By Nick Allen, Los Angeles4:00PM BST 04 Jun 2012
California voters are experiencing buyers' remorse over a $68.4 billion (£44.4 billion) high speed rail project which critics say risks becoming a "bullet train to nowhere."
Ambitious plans for a fast track linking Los Angeles and San Francisco at speeds of up to 220mph in just over two-and-a-half hours were slimly approved by 53 per cent in a statewide ballot in 2008. That allowed the state to raise $10 billion from bonds and secured an injection of $3.5 billion in stimulus money from the Obama
administration. There is currently no direct train route between the two.
The project is still $54.9 billion short of what is needed, raising fears that the state will be unable to find the funds to finish later sections, and could be left with a futuristic rail line linking minor cities and farming communities.
Amid disillusion over the cost and handling of the project, voters have now turned against what was supposed to become a symbol of state pride.