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Possible Texas bullet train gets major win, but at the cost of landowners

Texas State Supreme Court ruled 5-3 in favor of train project seizing private land, but in accordance to the Fifth Amendment in the Bill of Rights.

DALLAS — The company proposing a $30-billion project to build a high-speed bullet train that will shorten the commute from Dallas to Houston by two and a half hours received a win on Monday, but it may come at a cost to landowners.

On Monday, the Texas State Supreme Court ruled in a 5-3 decision in favor of Texas Central's project that'll run through Central Texas and said the organization was entitled to private land of the planned trail connecting the two major cities on the basis of "eminent domain."

"Eminent domain" is a Fifth Amendment right from the Bill of Rights that says the government can seize privately-owned property, but as long as they pay for it. 

In the High Speed Rail Alliance's article, Texas Central can pay fair-market rates to acquire the land needed to construct the 240-mile railway, which would turn a four-hour drive into a 90-minute train ride.

The commute from Dallas to Houston is one of the fastest growing super commute in the country. Part of that commute is a stretch of Interstate 45 was ranked the nation's most dangerous road in America, according to our sister station KHOU.

Texas Central celebrated this Supreme Court decision, in a quote from our sister station in Dallas, WFAA, saying, "We are appreciative to the Texas Supreme Court for their time and consideration of this important issue as we continue work on this innovative high-speed passenger train rail."

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