Connecticut was awarded $30 million in federal dollars to complete the third phase of its New Haven to Hartford to Springfield high-speed commuter rail project, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced Monday.
The money is a fraction of the $2.4 billion that Florida Gov. Rick Scott declined from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
“This is great news and a win for the State of Connecticut as we seek to increase mass transportation throughout the region in order to create new jobs and make our state more attractive to businesses,” Malloy said. “The rail project will form the backbone of an interconnected, regional rail network linking key economic centers through the northeast corridor. Supporting up to 50 daily passenger trains and reaching speeds up to 110 miles an hour, this line will provide some of the best rail service in the nation.”
When the funds became available in March, Malloy instructed the state DOT to pursue the money as he reached out to federal officials including President Barack Obama and U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, according to a prepared statement from the Malloy administration.
Malloy thanked Connecticut’s congressional delegation, in particular Rep. John Larson, D-1st, for his help in securing the funds. He also thanked the governors of Vermont and Massachusetts for helping the Connecticut put its application together. That application was submitted in April.
Amtrak also received $450 million for the Philadelphia to New York portion of its rail. Malloy said upgrades to that line will help reduce congestion in the Stamford to New Haven portion the rail.
The state is hoping to launch the new service in 2016, with the design phase of the project completed by 2013, the press release said. When operational, the project is expected to offer service every 30 minutes during peak rush-hour times and every 60 minutes for the rest of the day.