Transportation headlines, Thursday, May 12

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the library’s blog.

Amtrak faces congestion and criticism as it turns 40 (Washington Post)

Ridership is up, but the railroad still must often share its tracks with freight haulers and only one corridor — the Northeast — remains profitable. Many in Congress blast the subsidies the railroad needs while others say roads get government handouts, too, and that Amtrak would perform better if government would actually make some serious investments in it. Check out the accompanying photo gallery.

Washington, California and the curious case of the railroad to somewhere (Transport Politic)

Yonah Freemark says that despite the mounds of criticism, it makes sense to begin California’s high-speed rail project in the San Joaquin Valley. For one, it’s in between San Francisco and Los Angeles and thus a necessary part of the route. For another, it’s the part of the system where bullet trains will reach their highest speeds. Freemark also has issues with the report released this week by the California Legislative Analyst’s Office that found problems with the planning of the line.

In-N-Out comes to Texas (O.C. Register)

Texans go nuts as the first two stores of the burger chain open in the Lone Star State — along with the usual drive-through. I wonder if it will be like the drive-thru at stores here in the Golden State in which cars sit and idle and idle and idle and idle while waiting for those tasty burgers. I like In-N-Out, too, but do the respectable thing people and park the car and wait inside.