It would take very little tweaking to make the U.S. DoT’s high speed rail plan run through Valdosta to get from Macon to Jacksonville, instead of bypassing to the east.
Macon-Valdosta-Jacksonville is, after all, the historic route, and the tracks are still there and in use for freight.
first phase of the DoT’s plan,
“applications will focus on projects that can be completed quickly and yield measurable, near-term job creation and other public benefits”
So who in Valdosta or Lowndes County is talking to DoT about this?
Where could you go on the railroad?
Quite a few places, in 1918:
Found on Georgia's Railroad History & Heritage, by Steve Storey
And Valdosta was right in the middle of it all.
There used to be a train called the Royal Palm that ran from Detroit and Buffalo via Cincinnati, Atlanta, and Macon to Jacksonville.
This schedule is for 1953
Jacksonville Transit Blog brings this up while quoting a Valdosta Daily Times article about Valdosta's new transportation plan.
Hm, 5 million people in Atlanta, 3/4 million in Jacksonville, and Valdosta halfway in between….