This policy brief ex-amines European best practicesregarding urban integration of high speed rail (HSR) stations to maximize local economic andsustainable urban development
benets. The research goal was
to identify lessons for cities inNorth America, especially in Cali-fornia, to achieve sustainabledevelopment through coordinat-ed land use and transportation
planning around HSR stations.
This brief summarizes researchconducted in Europe fromFebruary-May 2010 as a Com-
parative Domestic Policy Fellow
for the German Marshall Fund
of the United States, drawing onliterature review, site visits, andinterviews with transportation
professionals, urban planners,academics, and government of-
cials in Italy, France, Germany,and Spain.
Comparative Domestic Policy Program
High speed rail (HSR) is a relatively new and rapidly expanding trans-portation mode, one with potentially powerul benets or local economicdevelopment and urban orm aroundthe stations. European cities have longbeen shaped by rail transport, but HSRservice is creating new dynamics, withnew opportunities and challenges.Cities are seeking to maximize thebenets o HSR through coordinatedtransportation and land use planning,strengthening integrated mobility options that promote smart growthand livable communities.High speed rail is dened by the Euro-pean Union as rail service travelingat 160 mph (250 km/h) or aster onnew track, or 200 km/hr on existingtracks. Tracks are continuous weldedrail, and trains are electrically-poweredvia overhead lines, or a very smoothand quiet ride. HSR urther reducestravel times by eliminating roadway-level crossings and by not sharing theright-o-way with reight or slowerpassenger trains.
Planning High Speed Rail Stations for Sustainable Urban Development:European Case Studies
by Matt Nichols
1744 R Street NWWashington, DC 20009T 1 202 683 2650F 1 202 265 1662E email@example.com
February 7, 2011
Matt Nichols is the principal transportation planner for the City of Berkeley, California. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, or theCity of Berkeley.
Japan opened the rst HSR system, theShinkansen — oten reerred to as theBullet Train — in 1964. France estab-lished HSR in 1983 with the openingo the Paris-Lyon Train à GrandeVitesse (high-speed train), or TGV.HSR expanded with the Eurostar lineto the U.K. and in Germany, and beganto grow dramatically in the 1990s withrapid national expansion in Spain,Italy, and elsewhere. In Asia, Koreaand China built major HSR systems.Worldwide, HSR grew rom approxi-mately 3,100 to 6,200 miles (5,000-10,000 km) between 1997 and 2009.In 2009, an estimated 13,500 km o HSR was under construction. Planningwas underway or an additional 17,600km, with approximately hal o theplanned growth in Europe. The UnitedStates joined the HSR club in 2008,when a ederal allocation o $8 billionprovided support or nine HSR proj-ects. In Caliornia, $2.35 billion inederal unds and a $9.95 billion 2008state bond have given momentum tothe planned HSR system, which wouldrun 800 miles between 28 stations, and