The Patrick Administration today took the next steps to dramatically improve passenger rail, submitting a formal application for High-Speed and Intercity Passenger Rail federal stimulus funds. The proposals submitted in this first round of applications would support two key projects:
1. Knowledge Corridor – Connecticut River Line
This $68 million project will rehabilitate the Connecticut River line to allow Amtrak to reroute Vermonter service to this line providing faster service and restored access to the cities of Northampton, and Greenfield. The application would support final design and construction.
2. Inland Route between Boston and Springfield
The Inland Route connects the cities of Springfield, Worcester, and Boston. This route was designed as a high-speed rail corridor by the Federal Railroad Administration but currently operates at regular speeds. Upgrading the Inland Route to high-speed standards between Boston and Springfield would require improvements including restoring double track between Worcester and Springfield. The application seeks funding for engineering work to prepare for the double-tracking, with applications for additional project components to follow in future rounds.
Additional applications for individual “ready-to-go” projects will be due on October 2, 2009.