High capacity corridors for high speed rail

Economics of high speed rail

The Australian Government decided to investigate high-speed rail between Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney and Brisbane in 2011 and 2012 and David Adams led the team undertaking economic analysis of possible routes in 2011.

The 2011 study followed the publication of a report that David Adams co-authored, East Coast High Capacity Infrastructure Corridors. This report proposed valuing a call option over high speed rail corridors.

The Phase 1 methodology proposed by David Adams progressively filtered route options, firstly using qualitative assessment and secondly using quantitative assessment. Both expenditure and revenue forecasts were incorporated into the quantitative assessment. Bill Lee brought experience from the California high speed rail.

David Adams proposed that Phase 2 should examine the appropriate role for Government in high speed rail, but the client chose to take another track.

Client outcome

It seems that high-speed rail may remain dormant in Australia until the economics is properly revisited.


Recent Work