People of Gilroy oppose destroying farmland to construct a remote train station

There’s a good article in the Gilroy Dispatch about the proposed High Speed Rail system and potential train station in Gilroy, and it quotes CGF Advocate Julie Hutcheson.  One potential location is downtown at the existing station, while the other is far east of town where a lot of prime farmland would be lost:

Residents rail against proposed East Gilroy bullet train station

A study of two proposed locations for a high-speed rail station in Gilroy will address concerns of traffic circulation, parking, land use, economic impacts and other factors, a city official said during a South County Joint Planning Advisory Committee meeting Thursday night in Morgan Hill. 


 The California High-Speed Rail Authority has designated two possible locations for a station in Gilroy – downtown and east of Highway 101 just outside the city. The CHSRA will make its decision later this fall, Bischoff said.

Several residents who attended Thursday’s meeting, however, said the east Gilroy station shouldn’t be an option.

 Yvonne Sheets-Saucedo read a statement from Californians Advocating Responsible Rail Design claiming the east Gilroy station violated an existing 20-year agreement between Santa Clara County’s Local Agency Formation Commission, the city of Gilroy and the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors.

Jennifer Williams, executive director for the Santa Clara County Farm Bureau, said Thursday that land east of Gilroy was “the best remaining farmland,” and constructing a rail station in that region was “counter to everything in society we’re trying to protect.”

 Julie Hutcheson, an advocate for the Committee for Green Foothills, said she feared an east Gilroy station would contribute to a loss of agriculture, due to the station footprint and the tracks themselves.


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