Governor Ned Lamont (D) and Joseph Giulietti, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation, recently sat down with Stephen Gardner – the newly appointed president and CEO of Amtrak – to discuss how Amtrak could help support opportunities to advance state rail infrastructure projects.
[Above photo by the Connecticut DOT. Left to right: Amtrak’s Gardner, Gov. Lamont, and Connecticut DOT’s Giulietti.]
During the meeting, Gov. Lamont reinforced that “now is the time” to invest in rail infrastructure and bring faster trains to Connecticut, which would improve the state’s economy, growth, and quality of life.
In particular, he said Connecticut rail service would benefit from $30 billion in competitive grants available for the Northeast Corridor within the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or IIJA signed into law in November 2021.
Gov. Lamont pointed to his state’s TIME FOR CT initiative – launched in June 2021 to develop faster and more frequent train service between Connecticut and New York – and the CONNECT NEC 2035 initiative, issued by the Northeast Corridor Commission in July 2021, would benefit from such “robust” competitive grant funding.
“Connecticut’s rail line is the lifeline of the northeast,” the governor noted in a statement. “We have a partnership in Amtrak that has been successful over the years and we look forward to that continuing. I know that together we will be able to implement the TIME FOR CT plan that will bring more services and amenities to the travelers in Connecticut.”
“The partnership between Amtrak and the Connecticut Department of Transportation is essential to the future of rail in Connecticut,” added Connecticut DOT’s Giulietti.
“I know by working together – Amtrak and the state – we will be able to bring more services and amenities to Connecticut’s rail passengers,” he said. “We are looking forward to pursuing funding for key priorities, including TIME FOR CT.”
“We have a strong, long-standing partnership with Connecticut and the Connecticut Department of Transportation as we all remain committed to ensuring that we provide safe and reliable train service, while also sharing a vision of improved speeds and service expansion, to better serve the citizens of Connecticut and the region,” Amtrak’s Gardner said.
“We look forward to improving on our collaboration to create an overall better experience for Connecticut residents and travelers,” he added.