Mordecai CAC High Speed Rail Letter of Position

Post date: Aug 30, 2010 4:10:56 PM

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Letter of Position

The following position of statement will be voted on at the September Meeting.

The Tier II Draft Environmental Impact Statement presented before the Raleigh community provides insight into a highly ambitious goal by providing high speed rail through the community of Mordecai and our region thereby providing a vital link to points south and north of the Raleigh metropolitan area. Much of the debate in the past few months involve the routing of the train through downtown Raleigh and the potential impact this route will have on those residents. Along with others in Wake County and the Raleigh metro area the Mordecai CAC supports the continued development of our area. Such development should adequately reflect the full economic opportunity of our region and also foster smart growth now and in the future. The two alternatives that have been put forth for the route of the high speed rail have been evaluated by the Passenger Rail Task Force and their recommendation is the Norfolk Southern Route would be the best route subject to specific conditions. The NC3 option does coincide more directly with the 2030 Comprehensive plan, does not call for elevated bridge over the Glenwood South District and also allows for more efficient transportation needs of the planned Union Depot station. These developments are forward looking and will help to boost growth in the downtown region.

However, the residents on the Norfolk Southern side of Capital Boulevard oppose this idea and have been very vocal about their concerns for routing the High Speed Rail through their community. We wish to let it be known to all concerned that the residents of the Mordecai CAC have similar concerns and feel that the same type of items need to be addressed should the rail go through the CSX side of the proposed route. Our community firmly believes in supporting our neighbors and those in opposition to the NC3 while maintaining that our own concerns are also relevant to the NC1 and NC2 options. The Mordecai CAC as a community wants our elected officials to closely scrutinize any recommendations that are made and we highly recommend that our leaders keep in mind the following:

    • Impact to existing neighborhoods should be minimized. Installation of sound abatement walls, pollution minimization controls, and or other such measures should be taken so as to limit this impact. These measures should be fully considered, planned in detail, and discussed with all concerned before any plan is finalized.
    • Property values should be protected and any degradation to quality of life in and around the affected areas should be kept to an absolute minimum. (Property devaluation can be aggravated by pollution including noise and light etc. and every effort needs to be made to minimize such impacts.)
    • Connectivity is a concern and efforts should be made to maintain the connectivity, not only between neighborhoods, but also between businesses and their customers.
    • Proper and thorough cost benefit analysis should be done on the areas affected by the proposed routes. We must ensure that due diligence has been done on any decision made and that efforts are made to create a win/win situation for all.
    • All economic benefits envisioned by this project must be considered in light of the long term economic impacts to the areas involved. (Here we are referring specifically to jobs and the future of downtown’s growth.)
    • Ensure that the transit needs of the community as a whole have been addressed and that the proposals put before the city council can be funded and that there is adequate ridership within our region.

In conclusion, our community expects that the council will determine the proper course of action for high speed rail and that every effort will be made to compensate those whose homes or businesses must be relocated at a fair value. We do look forward to this project in that it will move Raleigh into the future; however we want our civic leaders to adequately address concerns that have been expressed by all residents and businesses that are impacted.. We also expect that our leaders will take this opportunity to expand our local economy by fully evaluating the impacts of the high speed rail and its future to our area.

Learn More


    • North Carolina, Virginia and the Federal Railroad Administration announce the completion of a draft environmental statement (DEIS) that is a key step toward implementing high speed rail service in the two states and the Southeast.

    • Five-Points / NC3 Resource. Information about the High Speed Rail and the options for where to located it have been scarce. We’ve pulled together information and posted it here so you can find it all in one place.

In the Media

  • "Anybody in Raleigh FOR high-speed rail?" August 27th

  • "High-speed rail hearing tonight: "Alt. NC1/NC2" route gaining?"

  • "A state Department of Transportation rail engineer has given a negative review to a proposed five-block flyover that would lift fast trains above Capital Boulevard in order to steer clear of the Five Points neighborhood." August 31st

  • "Fears in Five Points... The Five Points Citizens Advisory Council voted 81-0 Thursday night to condemn a proposal that would route new passenger trains through the Norfolk Southern freight yard between Capital Boulevard and the Five Points area." August 31st

  • "Speakers at a packed public hearing Tuesday night criticized the state Department of Transportation’s ideas for routing high-speed passenger trains through downtown, and they urged the City Council to call for more study"