Black Hole!

L.A. NOW
Southern California — this just in
October 31, 2011 | 10:06 pm

California’s bullet train will cost an estimated $98.5 billion to build over the next 20 years, an amount far higher than any previous projection, according to a business plan scheduled to be unveiled Tuesday.

The estimate includes possible future inflation that will drive up the cost of the line, which would send trains at up to 220 mph from Southern California to the Bay Area.

The cost growth results in large part from a major revision in the construction schedule. In the past, the state assumed the system would be completed by 2020 but now assumes construction would be finished in 2033. That stretched-out schedule and an assumption that future inflation would average 3% per year are two key reasons the overall estimated cost of the system almost doubled in the new business plan.

In the past, the California High Speed Rail Authority has estimated the cost of the system would be $43 billion, based on construction being finished in 2020.

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