Passenger Rail Expansion Tied To Stimulus

12/29/09 6:06AM

Vermont transportation officials should learn within the next few months whether they will receive a $73 million federal grant that could help expand passenger rail service from Rutland to Burlington.

The state of Vermont has applied for the federal stimulus funding to upgrade the railroad tracks along the western side of the state.

Vermont Transportation Agency rail chief Joe Flynn tells the Barre Times Argus that upgrading the tracks with the stimulus money would enable the state to expand Amtrak's Ethan Allen Express train, which now travels between New York City and Rutland.

A requirement of the grant is that the upgrade be completed within two construction seasons.

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