High-Speed Rail Service From St. Louis and Chicago Becoming Reality

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Published on December 20 2012 2:34 pm
Last Updated on July 14 2013 4:07 pm
Written by Millie Lange

High-speed rail service between St. Louis and Chicago is about to become a reality in Illinois.

The Federal Railroad Administration Wednesday chose a plan for a rail line along the so-called Rock Island Corridor because it's the most efficient route. The FRA also selected a route to pass through Springfield.

The one-and-a-half-billiion-dollar line will boast trains traveling at speeds of more than 100-miles-an-hour.  Most of the high-speed line will be done in 2015.

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Illinois tops the region in train crash fatalities. Union Pacific's Northern Region consists of nine states.

In 2011, crossing incidents led to 75 Illinois deaths. Rounding out the top three were Iowa at 23 and Missouri at 20. Union Pacific also reminds drivers to use caution during extreme winter weather.

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A climatologist in Cornell University's Department of Earth and Atmospheric Science is predicting chances for a white Christmas.

Samantha Borisoff says it is guaranteed in Fairbanks, Alaska while St. Louis only has a 26 percent chance for the white stuff. Those odds look a little better for New Years with a 38 percent chance for precipitation.

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Drivers are saving a bit of money these days. Gas prices have dipped below $3 in parts of Central and Southern Illinois.

They're as low as $2.85 in Bloomington, Normal. Springfield and East St. Louis are seeing prices hover around the $3 mark. Prices are around $3.20 in Rock Island, Carbondale and Rushville.

Experts say gas prices typically drop in the winter months plus, problems with refineries have been ironed out. Gas prices are still about $3.76 in the Chicago area. That's actually about four cents higher than this time last year.