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High-Speed Rail To Mountains Proposed To Ease Traffic Congestion

DENVER (CBS4)- A high-speed rail line is being proposed from Denver to the mountains in an effort to ease traffic congestion that keeps thousands of drivers stuck for hours along Interstate 70.

The Colorado Department of Transportation is proposing a high-speed rail line that would connect Denver International Airport to the Eagle County Airport. CDOT said it is possible once they find a few billion dollars.

(credit: CBS)

"Building more lanes isn't going to get us out of this situation and we need to begin looking at the transportation of the future to serve Colorado," said Clear Creek County Commissioner Tim Mauck.

A report released by CDOT on Wednesday identified two ways for a high-speed mass transit: regular rail lines and the more modern idea of magnetic levitation.

"The report identified Maglev Technologies specifically as a specific technology that's available. It's utilized elsewhere in the world that could be very successful along this corridor," said Mauck.

RELATED STORY: State Officials Blame Drivers For Mountain Tie-Ups

"Ten years ago this was a pipe dream but is now commercially operating in Shanghai," said Rail and Special Projects Manager David Krutsinger.

The report states high-speed rail could help cut travel times in half into some of Colorado's most popular destinations.

"This is setting the stage, setting the development of a passenger rail system in the corridor," said Krutsinger.

The problem now is finding roughly $10 billion to build it.

"There just isn't the money today so we need a new revenue source and that's the second part of prioritization for the mountain corridor, where do the folks want to put their money?" said Krutsinger.

"I think the next is to actually undertake an economic study for the Advanced Guideway System Feasibility Study. I think clear creek county is more than happy to lead that study, take the next steps to further find the opportunities that exist," said Mauck.

American Maglev Technologies is the company hoping to build this system. They said the study is a great first step now it's a matter of bringing stakeholders together to find out if this can financially work.

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