2,000 Construction Jobs Created on the High-Speed Rail Project


The California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) was joined by workers representing multiple local union halls to announce that more than 2,000 construction jobs have been created since the start of the high-speed rail project. Strong partnerships have been made with the State Building and Construction Trades Council, the Fresno Regional Workforce Development Board and many other groups to train and hire a skilled workforce to build the nation’s first high-speed rail system.

Not only has this project created jobs, but each design-builder is implementing the project’s Targeted Worker Program. Under the Authority’s Community Benefits Agreement, 30 percent of all project work hours are to be performed by National Targeted Workers. Each design-builder is meeting or exceeding this goal. Out of the 2,000 workers dispatched to the project, 145 reported living in Madera County, with 954 living in Fresno County and 172 living in Kern County.

Fresno resident Foster Ellis, 28, was dispatched as the 2,000th worker for the high-speed rail project and is a traffic control technician for Associated Traffic Safety. “I work everywhere from Madera to Fresno or wherever they send me. I’m never in one spot,” said Ellis, who has also been with the Labors Union Local 294 for seven years. “I’m really excited to see this project get done; I think it will make Fresno grow a lot.”

Today’s speakers included High-Speed Rail Authority Chief Operating Officer, Joe Hedges, Central Valley Regional Director, Diana Gomez, Labor and Workforce Development Agency Secretary, David Lanier, Northern California Regional Director for the State Building and Construction Trades Council, Bob Jennings and Secretary and Treasurer for the Building and Construction Trades Council for Madera, Fresno, Kings and Tulare counties, Chuck Riojas.

The Authority currently has 119 miles under construction within three construction packages. Design-builders Tutor-Perini/Zachry/Parsons, Dragados-Flatiron/Joint Venture, and California Rail Builders have more than 20 active construction sites, with several more expected to open in the coming months. This work totals more than $3 billion in construction commitments.

“This project milestone represents significant progress on the nation’s first high-speed rail system,” said Chief Operating Officer Joe Hedges. “The workers we are recognizing today are the ones that are going out every day to work on more than two dozen active construction sites in the Central Valley. Once we expand out from the Valley to the north and the south, there are going to be hundreds of major structures that will need to be built, creating thousands of jobs and new opportunities.”

For more information on careers with the California High-Speed Rail Authority, please visit: http://www.hsr.ca.gov/About/Careers/index.html. To sign-up for the Construction Pre-Apprentice training program through the Fresno Regional Workforce Development Board, please visit: https://www.valleybuild.net/

SOURCE: California High-Speed Rail Authority

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