|Vermont’s rail network obtained a significant boost Thursday — a $9 million federal grant to upgrade a 20-mile section of track between Burlington and Rutland. The track upgrades, which will take place from Rutland north to Leicester, will allow freight trains to carry heavier loads at faster speeds.
“While the purpose of this grant is to improve freight service,” Bernie said, “the investment in these tracks will, hopefully, facilitate the expansion of Amtrak’s Ethan Allen passenger service – one day creating a rail connection from Burlington to Rutland and on to New York.” In western Vermont, Amtrak’s daily passenger service starts in Rutland and travels to New York City by way of Albany, N.Y.
Thursday’s grant announcement brings the total of federal rail investment into Vermont to nearly $70 million since 2009. That includes $52 million of federal stimulus funds invested into the Vermont segment of “The Vermonter” rail line, which provides passenger service from St. Albans, Vt., to Washington, D.C.
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