Minnesota transport officials propose spending up to $5 billion to improve rail

For years, rail advocates have touted the environmental and financial advantages of moving people and freight by rail. Now they have support from Minnesota transportation officials, who propose investing billions of dollars over the next 20 years in improved rail service. The snag is where to find the money.

Freight and passenger rail service in this country reached a high point in the World War II era. But the rise of cars and truck transport -- combined with cheap gas -- were already signaling the demise of rail.

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