Larry Salci
Consulting Services
Saturday, December 16, 2017
Texas High Speed Rail Project
President Bombardier Corporation and Vice Chairman, Texas TGV Corporation

The Texas High Speed Rail Act (the "HSR Act") was enacted by the Texas Legislature in 1989 to establish the Texas High Speed Rail Authority (THSRA) as an agency of the State of Texas for the purpose of awarding a franchise to construct, operate and maintain a high speed rail facility. In 1989 the Texas TGV Corporation was formed between Morrison Knudsen Corporation, Alsthom Transportation, and Bombardier Corporation, along with 3 minority partners and on 5-28-91 a 50 year Franchise was awarded to the Texas TGV Corp. by the THSRA.

As President of Bombardier Corporation, I was initially a member of the Texas TGV Corporation Board of Directors, oversaw the development of the TGV train set technical and cost proposal. Post franchise award I was appointed Vice Chairman and CEO of the Texas TGV Corporation by its Board of Directors and was responsible for the general management, budget, and finance of the Project from 1992-1993.

The Project scope was for HSR service between four major metropolitan areas of Houston, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Austin, and San Antonio (known as the Texas Triangle) The Texas TGV Corporation completed Preliminary Engineer with a Project cost estimate of $6.523 Billion.

Projected Travel Times to Selected Downtown Stations
  • Austin-Houston 1 hr. 14 min.
  • Dallas-San Antonio 1 hr. 58 min.
  • Houston-Dallas 1 hr. 41 min.
  • Ft. Worth-Houston 2 hrs. 22 min.
  • DFW Airport-Austin 1 hr. 28 min.
  • Austin-San Antonio 42 min.
Timetable for Completion-Construction of the system was to be accomplished in stages, with several segments under construction concurrently with the first completed segment planned for 2000 and full revenue service by 2003.

Franchise Required Financial Milestones:

  • Capitalization of $10 million within 5 days of Franchise award (achieved). The TGV Corp partners expended equity in excess of $45 million on the Project.
  • Finishing a "baseline plan for implementation" within 300 days of Franchise award (achieved)
  • Obtaining equity financing commitments in the amount of $170 million on or before Dec. 31, 1993 (achieved but not implemented). On Nov. 29 1993 The Texas TGV Corporation had $200 million placement for Equity Participation Notes issued by the Canadian Imperial Bank and S.G. Warburg Securities. However, the Texas TGV Corporation determined that the Project could not be financed with 100% private equity and the federal government declined to participate. Texas, by statute, was barred from participation. The Franchise was terminated.