Feb 12, 2019

California abandons $77 billion high-speed rail plan

California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Jane Tyska/Digital First Media/The Mercury News via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday that the state will no longer pursue plans to build an estimated $77 billion high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco because the project "would cost too much and respectfully take too long," per the AP.

Driving the news: Newsrom said the state will instead focus on the Central Valley part of the route, from Merced to Bakersfield.

The big picture: The project was years behind schedule with an estimated completion date of 2033.

  • It had been hamstrung by political backlash in the state, and polling showed that a majority of Californians disapproved of the plan as costs ballooned.
  • Similar proposals for high-speed trains on the East Coast, including along the heavily trafficked Northeast Corridor between Washington, D.C., and Boston, have also fallen apart due to opposition and massive cost estimates, per the New York Times.

Go deeper: The U.S. still has a long way to go on high-speed rail

Go deeper

The race to catch Nike's Vaporfly shoe before the 2020 Olympics

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Four months ago, on the very same weekend, Eliud Kipchoge became the first human to run a marathon in under two hours, and fellow Kenyan Brigid Kosgei shattered the women's marathon record.

Why it matters: Kipchoge and Kosgei were both wearing Nike's controversial Vaporfly sneakers, which many believed would be banned because of the performance boost provided by a carbon-fiber plate in the midsole that acted as a spring and saved the runner energy.

Go deeperArrow36 mins ago - Sports

Reassessing the global impact of the coronavirus

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Economists are rethinking projections about the broader economic consequences of the coronavirus outbreak after a surge of diagnoses and deaths outside Asia and an announcement from a top CDC official that Americans should be prepared for the virus to spread here.

What's happening: The coronavirus quickly went from an also-ran concern to the most talked-about issue at the National Association for Business Economics policy conference in Washington, D.C.

Tech can't remember what to do in a down market

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Wall Street's two-day-old coronavirus crash is a wakeup alarm for Silicon Valley.

The big picture: Tech has been booming for so long the industry barely remembers what a down market feels like — and most companies are ill-prepared for one.