Tuesday, May 17, 2011

U.S. to host 8th World Congress on HSR

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The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and the International Union of Railways (UIC) on Tuesday formally announced that the 8th World Congress on High Speed Rail will take place in Philadelphia July 11-13, 2012. The World Congress is expected to attract more than 2,000 attendees worldwide to exchange views on the development and achievements of high speed rail.

uic_logo.jpgThe World Congress will feature international rail experts on transportation policy and technology. The World Congress will bring together both the public and private sectors to provide insight and best practices for implementing high-speed rail projects at every stage—from planning, financing, and construction, to operations and management. Additionally, the Congress will also feature an exhibit showcasing high-speed rail products and services.

“High speed is developing at an impressive pace around the world,” said UIC Director General Jean-Pierre Loubinoux. “High speed rail is often described as the ‘transport mode of the future’; it is good for mobility, sustainability, the environment and for people as it creates employment and business through infrastructure and new services.

“We are very happy to organize the 8th edition of our World Congress in the United States and hope that all our experiences and those of our members may contribute to making swift progress in high speed rail development in the USA, thereby enabling the USA to join the world’s high speed leaders,” added Loubinoux.

“As America reshapes our transportation options and advances high-speed and intercity passenger rail to meet the challenges of the 21st Century, UIC’s decision to hold the World Congress here will go a long way in ensuring that the United States draws on the knowledge and experience of experts from around the world,” said APTA President William Millar.

Partnering with UIC and APTA in hosting the World Congress are Amtrak and the Association of American Railroads, all UIC North American Members.

At a ceremony May 11 in New York, UIC’s Loubinoux joined Amtrak Vice President-High Speed Rail Al Engel, along with high-level representatives from both Russian Railways and East Japan Railway Co. (JR East), in signing declaration formally launching “the UIC Declaration on Sustainable Mobility and Transport,” which among other goals includes emphasizing global HSR and passenger rail development.