CXS Regional Commuter Rail System
We are all waiting for CSX to announce their new Regional Commuter Rail System. It is rumored that the freight-rail company has learned that there might be more profit in transporting people than goods.
The tagline is:
“Haulin’ ass, grass or gas –
nobody rides for free”
The CSX plan is to sell and/or lease their existing heavy-rail lines to communities throughout the eastern seaboard and pass them off as “commuter” lines. CSX is estimating that this will net them about a bazillion dollars AND it will allow CSX to continue to use these same rail lines for freight, at NO cost to them.
The first step in this new CSX Regional Commuter Rail System is to convince the various effected communities to accept the notion that existing CSX rail lines will best serve the riding public in each locale.
The second step is to get the communities to understand that this will be a great way for them tear down housing along “the other side of the tracks” and call it Transit Oriented Development (TOD). Hillsborough County Florida has been working on this but instead refers to it as TAMPA Oriented Development.
Lastly, the displaced low-income renters along the rail TOD will then be qualified for first-time, low-income home buyer mortgages. These mortgages get bundled into tax-exempt, mortgage-backed securities guaranteed by Federal taxpayers. Fortunes will be made by banks, developers, builders, brokers, attorneys, security sellers, title companies and investors.
Unfortunately for the county governments involved, these mortgage-backed securities will no longer generate transfer fees each time the properties are subsequently sold. Oh, and foreclosure irregularities will tie up courts for years.
Although the downsides of this investment scheme have cost counties billions of dollars, just think how profitable it will be for those people who already have too much money.
<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen