A third federal government agency has given a stamp of approval for a high-speed rail project between Las Vegas and Victorville, Calif.
The Bureau of Land Management on Thursday issued a record of decision for the DesertXpress Enterprises LLC passenger rail line in Clark County and San Bernardino County, Calif.
The decision authorizes the use of right of way to build the line on public land administered by the BLM.
The DesertXpress project received similar approvals from the Surface Transportation Board in October and from the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Railroad Administration in July.
The BLM determined that about 821 acres of public land would be needed for the permanent right of way. An additional 95 acres would be needed for temporary construction use. The project also includes about 2,800 acres of private land.
DesertXpress plans to begin engineering and construction next year on the 185-mile double track that would run along Interstate 15.
The company plans to operate trains traveling at 150 mph, with ticket costs averaging $50 per passenger one way.
The company is pursuing a $4.9 billion federal loan to build the $6.5 billion project.