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The Vision for the New England High-speed and Intercity Rail Network collectively developed by the Departments of Transportation in the six New England states provides a vision for rail in the region and a commitment to work together. The rail system as envisioned will 'provide a foundation for economic competitiveness and promote livable communities through a network of High-Speed and Intercity Passenger rail routes connecting every major city in New England with smaller cities and rural areas and internationally to Montreal.'
The New Haven-Hartford-Springfield (NHHS) Rail Program will provide significant new regional passenger rail service options as a key component of a robust and vibrant multi-modal regional transportation system. With funding from the new High-Speed Intercity Rail Program created by President Barack Obama in 2009, and Connecticut, the NHHS Rail Program will provide the infrastructure and trains to operate some of the nation’s best passenger rail services. As the gateway to New England, the NHHS Rail Program will also facilitate improved service to Massachusetts, Vermont and eventually Montreal. New train service will connect communities, generate sustainable economic growth, help build energy independence, and provide links to travel corridors and markets within and beyond the region.
In the future, The CTrail Hartford Line rail service will operate at speeds up to 110 mph, cutting travel time between Springfield and New Haven to as little as 81 minutes. Travelers at New Haven, Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin, Hartford, Windsor, Windsor Locks and Springfield will be able to board trains approximately every 30 minutes during the peak morning and evening rush hour and hourly during the rest of day, with direct or connecting service to New York City and multiple frequencies to Boston or Vermont (via Springfield). New train stations also are planned at North Haven, Newington, West Hartford and Enfield.
The NHHS Rail Program is a key and necessary component of a broader New England passenger rail vision developed by the Governors in the Northeast.
The vision calls for a significant expansion of intercity passenger rail service across New England and the Northeast linking into the high-speed Northeast Corridor spine. New passenger rail service would serve key Northeast markets:
Many of these new services operate over the NHHS corridor. As a result, upgrade of the NHHS corridor to accommodate the planned increases in service is a pre-condition to this regional service expansion. Connecticut is working closely with Massachusetts and Vermont to coordinate the planning and funding for the Program and implementation of the vision for New England.