Hello everyone. Thank you so much for joining us. Well, we’ve just seen the Line 55 train from Minneapolis/St Paul arrive here at Chicago’s historic Union Station, and that means a very important thing has happened. The third phase of the GoobNet Highly Effective Accelerated Railway Transit for Accessing National Destinations with a Special Opportunity to Unify Locations train network is off and running!
Phase 2 opened some time ago, and at that time we urged you, as we will again now, to take a moment and thank all of the many people who worked so hard and so long to make this third phase a reality. There were thousands of construction workers who built the tracks, assembled the train cars, made the engines, bolted in the seats, constructed these new terminals, installed the ticket windows and kiosks. Many of you are here today. Thank you so much for your hard work. And many of you will also be here to perform ongoing maintenance on everything that you’ve built. Thank you again. And thank you as well to everyone who is already hard at work operating these trains, selling and managing your tickets, and making sure that you are healthy, happy, and well fed on these trains. Seriously, I’m jealous of those of you on Line 95. Have you tried those soft pretzels they’re serving in the dinner cars on there? Fantastic.
So let’s talk now about what changes have been made to the network this time. There actually aren’t any new lines this time, but we have laid down about six thousand kilometres of new track. What that means, of course, is that we have finally completed a nationwide high speed railway network that extends from coast to coast!
Yes, both lines 10 and 80 can take you from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Line 10, the Southern Sun Line, has completed the Phoenix to San Antonio leg. Line 80, the Gold Line, has completed the portion from Reno to Omaha. And that means, of course, that those of us here in Chicago, and anywhere else in the East, South, and Midwest, can now reach the West, and vice versa. So watch out for those Angelenos and their sunglasses.
The other additions we’ve made are important, but they’re steps toward even greater things to come. The extension of Lines 20 and 95 into Virginia and North Carolina is a great step in its own right, but both lines will have more additions coming in the next phase. Likewise, the Line 55 extension to Minneapolis/St Paul is actually going to become part of the new Line 90 when Phase 4 is complete.
That’s all coming in the future. For now, we can be pleased about the many large cities that have joined us in this new phase, including Salt Lake City, Denver, El Paso, Charlotte, Milwaukee, and, as we mentioned a moment ago, Minneapolis/St Paul. In fact, the hometowns of all nineteen MLS clubs are now accessible. So are all 30 NBA teams and 24 of the 30 NHL teams.
But most importantly, with Phase 3 running, you can, for the first time ever, ride overnight from Chicago to San Francisco. So come along, everyone! Let’s all get on the Gold Line!
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