No Stops in Connecticut for Amtrak's New High Speed Train

The railroad is building a new Washington to Boston line that would cut directly through the state. A slower train would stop in Danbury, Waterbury and Hartford.

Amtrak is moving forward with plans to spend $115 billion improving rail service between Washington D.C., and Boston, including a proposal for a new high speed rail line that would cut through the middle of Connecticut.

That latter plan has some state officials concerned because the proposal currently does not include any stops along the Connecticut portion of the route, according to a story published today in the Hartford Courant.

Amtrak's proposal for the new rail service would include a high speed portion with trains that would operate at up to 220 miles per hour along the new line that would be built from Danbury to Providence and which would cut diagonally across the state. A second tier service along that high speed line would include stops only in Danbury, Waterbury and Hartford, the Courant reports.

The new line, which is part of Amtrak's long-term plans, would cut directly through numerous eastern Connecticut towns. You can see a detailed report on Amtrak's proposal here.

RalphieLockwood August 22, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Amtrak should be dismantled. What a horrific boondoggle foisted upon the American taxpayers! Not even close to profitable and a high-speed rail is poised to be an even bigger boondoggle. Sad that we get shafted with these big ticket projects that only drain our country of capital.
Jonathan Hochman August 22, 2012 at 04:11 AM
Amtrak makes 200 million per year profit on Northeast Corridor services, on 500 million revenue. The trains are full. Expanding service in this region makes good sense. The only reason Amtrak loses money is that the Congress requires rail services in rural areas. Fine, that is economic development, but don't blame Amtrak. Our CT Congresspeople need to make sure there are stops in CT, and local connections along he line. I am sure they will take care of it. This proposed service will be great for the CT economy.
Jonathan Hochman August 22, 2012 at 04:57 AM
Reading Amtrak's proposal, there definitely are stops in CT on the Express and Regional trains. A Super Express train proposed in the distant future might go from NYC to Boston without stopping. The proposal also suggests Amtrak would make the new line available for local commuter rail services. This looks like a big win for CT. Please read the proposal. http://www.amtrak.com/ccurl/453/325/Amtrak-Vision-for-the-Northeast-Corridor.pdf
AlanS August 27, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Many folks - are woefully misinformed when it comes to rail; Amtrak in particular, and general media reporting on passenger rail (rail period) is poor at best. Bus companies and airlines benefit from massive public outlays via trust funds, trust funds Amtrak is not fortunate to have or benefit from. Their should be a public investment mechanism for intercity rail (Amtrak) like there is for all other transportation modes. A note worth mentioning also is that the highway trust fund is being propped up by general tax funds; not just federal gas tax funds. Bolt Bus and Megabus are not cleaning Amtraks clock- not even close and they are not faster in the northeast although generally traveling over the federal speed limit when they blow by me on the highway. The slowest portion of Amtrak's Northeast Corridor is New Rochelle to New Haven; and the only part not operated/dispatched by Amtrak but rather the Metro-North commuter railroad; (which should change). North of New Haven and South of New York City Amtrak trains routinely travel in excess of 125MPH over large distances and up to maximum 150MPH and 135MPH respectively. This plans implementation would be a great investment in the future.
AlanS August 28, 2012 at 02:54 PM
Another point: While true HSR will be a great investment; despite the media, Amtrak's northeast corridor does not make money. That only approaches truth if infrastructure and maintenance is not in the equation. All passenger transportation relies on federal dollars. Amtrak's comes over the table while aviation and highway budgets are built in & receive far less scrutiny. Amtrak has preserved a necessary national system. It’s vital long distance trains account for 45% of its total passenger miles (one passenger traveling one mile) & come closer to covering their operating expenses than trains operating on the Amtrak owned northeast corridor. Separating infrastructure from operations is not the answer (as Great Britain found out) proper balanced investment is. Some cry for privatization; forgetting private railroads exited rail passenger business because they were unwilling to underwrite its increasing losses while the government poured tens of billions into aviation and highways. Despite anemic funding, Amtrak continues to set ridership records & as of 2010 covered 84% of its operating expenses, more than any other nationalized passenger rail system. This plan would be implemented incrementally and would bring incremental benefits until its completion. Amtrak has an industry respected peer reviewed 220MPH HSR plan and it operates the only North American high speed PTC railroad; arguably the most complex in the world. Amtrak can get it done.


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