Governor Rell: Gov. Rell: CT Wins $120 M for New Haven-Hartford-Springfield Rail Project


{Seal of the State of Connecticut}

STATE OF CONNECTICUT
EXECUTIVE CHAMBERS
HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT  06106

M. Jodi Rell
Governor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 25, 2010
Contact: 
860-524-7313

Governor Rell: Connecticut Wins $120 Million for New Haven-Hartford-Springfield Rail Project

 

 

            Governor M. Jodi Rell today announced that Connecticut is receiving a $120 million grant from the federal government to support the long-planned New Haven-Hartford-Springfield, Massachusetts (NHHS) high-speed rail line project – a major victory for the state and a critical step forward for the project.

 

            The goal is to establish high-speed, intercity rail service on the 62-mile line within five years. Connecticut is working jointly with Massachusetts and Vermont to expand service through the heart of New England. The NHHS line would eventually extend to Vermont and on to Montreal.

 

            “This is truly a great day in Connecticut – and this is a hard-earned and well-deserved celebration,” Governor Rell said during a news conference at the Meriden Train Station. “It’s a great day for commuters, a great day for business and economic development all along the central Connecticut corridor and a great day for the future of transportation – not only here but throughout New England.

 

            “This funding will be paired with money already approved by the state Bond Commission to make important upgrades to the existing route, allowing us to run trains in both directions at the same time, dramatically increasing speeds and improving service all along the route,” the Governor said.

 

            Governor Rell recalled that in April the state hosted U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, riding from New Haven to Hartford on an Amtrak conference car then meeting with state legislators, Massachusetts officials and members of Congress from both states to discuss plans for the rail project.

 

            “Afterward, this is what Secretary LaHood had to say,” Governor Rell recalled today. “‘Connecticut has its act together – and good things happen when states have their act together.’” He was right – and today very good things are happening.”

 

            It is expected that the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield line will:

 

  • Reduce the number of vehicles on roads by approximately 4,000 cars each day
  • Increase the connectivity of rail and bus systems at all train stations, including the proposed Hartford-New Britain Busway
  • Foster better linkages between Bradley International Airport and the region
  • Generate close to 4,000 jobs
  • Create opportunities for transit-oriented development at rail stations along the line
  • Save 1 billion gallons of fossil fuel annually
  • Reduce carbon emissions by over 10,000 tons a year

            The state had initially requested $220 million from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) for the project. Although the grant announced today is less than the full request, Governor Rell said the state remains committed to moving forward.

 

            “This is still a sizable commitment by the FRA – one that shows the federal government recognizes the value of our plan and the dedication of all of our partners,” the Governor said. “We will have to make adjustments in our plans to reflect the level of funding – but our belief in the promise of this project is unchanged. There are future rounds of funding that we will be pursuing with the same vision and vigor and it is our intention to see it through to completion, because we understand how much it means to the future of our state – and our region.”

 

            Earlier this year, Connecticut received $40 million in federal funding for the construction of double-tracking on a 10-mile stretch of the corridor between Newington and Berlin. That funding was matched by a state commitment of $26 million.



Content Last Modified on 10/25/2010 3:09:01 PM






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