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Source : Amtrak
December 1, 2023
Author : Patty Allen
Is the old railway tunnels and bridges along the North East Corridor making your heart beat faster than the fastest Amtrak train? Or are you constantly delayed when taking the train to work? This is about to change and for the better!
The Northeast Corridor is one of the busiest railway systems in the country, and a monetary stimulus here would not just lead to infrastructure improvements but also more jobs, continued economic growth, and improved quality of life.
President Biden announced $16.4 billion in federal funding for 25 different passenger projects on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor. This funding is being sanctioned through the Federal Road Administration's Federal State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Grant Program.
This mammoth funding will help rebuild and upgrade infrastructure over a century old, including tracks, power systems, signals, and stations.
Connecticut is set to receive $2 billion of these funds to fund 10 projects.
"When Congress was writing the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, my number one priority was making sure any legislation we passed made long-term, historic investments in modernizing the Northeast Corridor. I'm thrilled that Connecticut is receiving $2 billion in federal funding to make our rail system faster, safer, and more advanced," Senator Murphy explained.
The Connecticut River Bridge, a 116-year-old bridge used by Amtrak's main line and intercity services, as well as Connecticut Shore Line East and freight trains, will receive nearly half of the funding – $827 million.
Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2nd District, said that the bridge was "structurally deficient" since 2006.
The funding will go to constructing a new moveable bridge connecting Old Saybrook and Old Lyme. The project, set to begin construction in 2024, will allow trains to travel at speeds of up to 70 mph on the bridge.
According to Amtrak, the new bridge is designed to last for 150 years.
Gov. Ned Lamont said, "When it comes to rail, you will be able to get from New London to New Haven, to Stamford, New York, or up to Hartford much faster, more time to be at home with your family faster to be able to get to and from work."
The WALK Bridge Replacement Project will receive $465 million in federal funding to replace its existing bridge with a new resilient bridge structure that improves the safety and reliability of real service along the NEC and the New Haven Line.
Another $245.92 million will be granted for the Davon Bridge Replacement Project. It will help construct a safe and reliable bridge crossing for rail over the river and provide marine navigation underneath. According to state officials, this bridge is an essential transportation link between Stamford and New Haven on Metro-North Railroad's New Haven Line and between New York and Boston on Amtrak's Northeast corridor, carrying 6,300 passengers daily.
$112.8 million is being allocated for the New Haven Line Power Improvement Program, while $119.32 went to Devon Bridge Interim Repairs.
The IIJA allocates $104.87 million in funding to the Hartford Line Rail Program Double Track Phase 3B Project to improve the three single track sections of about 6.2 miles to double track sections. This will increase passenger rail service frequency and speed, addressing intercity transportation needs in Connecticut, Central Mass., Boston, and Vermont.
Additionally, $23.2 million will be awarded to the Saugatuck River Bridge to replace its movable bridge in Westport. These modifications are anticipated to increase safety and enable trains to run at their fastest authorized speed.
Funding worth $71.65 million has been allocated for the New Haven Line Track Improvement and Mobily Enhancement, $15.4 million for the New Haven Line Network Infrastructure Upgrade, and $4 million for the New Haven to Providence Capacity Planning Study.
The Gateway Hudson River Tunnel in New York and New Jersey, the Frederick Douglass Tunnel in Maryland, the Susquehanna River Bridge in Maryland, and Penn Station Access in New York are significant national projects that will receive federal funding.