A high-speed rail link between Atlanta and Chattanooga isn’t likely to happen because of a lack of money and political will, Chattanooga’s mayor told a newspaper outlet last week.
“Any kind of intercity rail doesn’t happen without large-scale federal investment,” the Chattanooga Times Free Press quoted Mayor Andy Berke as saying. “It’s pretty clear that the federal government is not in a position right now to do large-scale infrastructure investments.”
State and federal officials have long discussed building a rail connection between the two cities and have spent millions studying the feasibility of a line, the newspaper reported.
“It only works if the community is behind it,” Berke said, according to the Chattanooga Times Free Press report. “It’s a real investigation as to whether it’s economically feasible and there’s enough community support to make it realistic. And if there’s not, we shouldn’t do it.”
Meanwhile, officials in Chattanooga, a town made famous by the railroads, are debating a citywide light rail network.