Arup Awarded CHSRA Contract

Written by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
(Rendering Courtesy of the CHSRA)

(Rendering Courtesy of the CHSRA)

The California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) has selected Arup as sustainability program manager for its planned 500-mile Phase 1 system from San Francisco to Los Angeles/Anaheim.

Leading a team of 12 consultants, Arup is charged with renewable energy modeling and procurement, climate change adaptation and resilience, setting sustainable design criteria, managing greenhouse gas and air quality emissions, carbon offsetting, and sustainability reporting. The group will also be conducting hazard analysis and developing resilient design approaches to mitigate climate change-related risks. The consultants are Arellano, BASE, Bio Studio, Build Momentum, Convey, ERP, GlobalASR, ICF, OMCI, Polytechnique, Strategen, and Terraverde.

“To further the environmental benefits of the [high-speed rail] system’s design, Arup is committed to incorporating proven, innovative strategies that advance sustainability,” the company said in its July 12 announcement of the contract award. “The new high-speed rail line will be designed to operate with 100% renewable energy, with an estimated capacity of 1.9 million MWh per year supported by solar power and battery storage systems.”

“We are excited to have Arup support the delivery of this ambitious project and help maintain our focus on setting a standard for sustainable infrastructure,” CHSRA Director of Planning and Sustainability Margaret Cederoth said. “We are eager deliver the backbone of sustainable transportation for California.”

The high-speed rail project has achieved Envision Platinum certification, the highest standard in the framework for sustainable, resilient and equitable infrastructure developed by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI), according to Arup, an ISI charter member. Arup said it will assist CHSRA in maintaining that certification “through a rigorous process of data collection and validation.” Additionally, the firm said it will help implement CHSRA-driven “sustainability strategies into the project specifications to ensure the construction of the rail infrastructure, systems, and stations include the use of zero-emission construction vehicles and minimize the embodied carbon of concrete and steel used to build the project.” Arup said it will also maintain CHSRA’s first-party local program for carbon offsetting.

Last fall, Foster + Partners and Arup (F+P Arup) won an approximately $35 million contract for design and support services for CHSRA’s Merced, Fresno, Kings/Tulare and Bakersfield stations.

In a related development, CHSRA earlier this year released its 2023 project update report.

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