Governor M. Jodi Rell and Transportation Commissioner Stephen E. Korta II today announced that the Guilford Train Station opened Monday, November 28th to the public.  The newly constructed Guilford station is part of an overall $25 million dollar effort by the Connecticut Department of Transportation to improve safety and operations on Shore Line East. New stations in Branford and Clinton opened to commuters this past August. 

“It is great to see this station open for public use.  The work completed at the Guilford Train Station provides a safe and convenient location for Connecticut commuters to board Shore Line East trains,” said Governor M. Jodi Rell. “The State is moving forward with many new and exciting initiatives to improve rail service in the state, and I look forward to our continuing efforts to provide updated first-class service to our residents.”

The newly constructed facility in Guilford offers access on both sides of the railway, with a pedestrian overpass allowing commuters to park or be dropped off on either side of the tracks.  The train station is located on the south side with boarding for service in either direction.  The south side of the station provides for 176 newly-paved parking spaces free of charge to commuters.  On the north side, a drop off area and limited handicap parking area connects to a pedestrian overpass for commuters to access the train station boarding platform.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation constructed the Branford, Guilford and Clinton train stations to replace the older existing lower platform decks.  The new stations have increased access and service, with improved functions such as handicapped accessibility, high-level platforms to allow for level boarding on trains, a commuter shelter area, a convenient commuter drop off area, increased parking and enhanced lighting.  A total of five new stations will be built over the next several years.  The Madison and Westbrook Stations are scheduled to begin construction in 2006. 

“The Branford, Guilford, and Clinton Train Stations provide safe and convenient locations for commuters to park and board the train.  The increased free parking and customer-friendly stations match the Department’s commitment to provide better services to our in-state commuters,” said Commissioner Stephen Korta, II. 

Over the past several months, SLE has experienced a 9 percent increase in total monthly rides comparing statistics from 2005 to 2004. Shore Line East marked the highest increase this past month, gaining nearly 9.5 percent on average for daily rides from October 2005 compared to October 2004. 

Shore Line East has provided on average 1,600 rides per day or 405,000 rides per year with service from Monday through Friday.  Trains do not operate on Saturday, Sunday or major holidays.  Shore Line East Service connects at New Haven, Bridgeport and Stamford stations for Metro-North service to New York City.  Reduced combined Shore Line East/Metro-North monthly commuter tickets are available.

Shore Line East trains are owned and operated by the DOT under contract with Amtrak to provide daily rail operations.  SLE commuter operations began in May of 1990 serving seven stations along the 33-mile segment of Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor between New Haven and Old Saybrook.  The DOT extended service to New London in 1996.  The State Street Station, which provides access to downtown New Haven, was opened in 2003.

Connecticut Department of Transportation

Current Rail Activities

Governor’s Transportation Initiative

  • The $1.3 billion Transportation Improvement Program provides for the design and purchase of 342 passenger cars for the New Haven Line as well as a new rail maintenance facility and other public transportation initiatives. 

Specifically the Governor’s Transportation Package (SB-2000) included:

  • $667 million for new rail cars on the New Haven Line,
  • $300 million for new rail maintenance facilities,
  • $187 million for “congestion mitigation” measures on Interstate 95 from Greenwich to North Stonington,
  • $150 million for improvements to I-84 and I-91, as well as other state roads and highways,
  • $7.5 million for new transit buses.

M-8 Passenger Rail Car Fleet Replacement Program

  • The Connecticut Department of Transportation and MTA/Metro North have embarked on an aggressive program to replace the older passenger rail car fleet on the New Haven Line.
  • A 17 % increase in ridership during the last decade on the New Haven Line combined with an average 4% monthly increase in 2005, makes the need to replace older rail cars a priority. The new M-8 Fleet will address the issue of consistent service and additional seating.
  • Work has already begun.  An engineering firm has been hired to provide technical specifications and engineering services for design of the new cars.

Running Repair Shop for Rail Maintenance in New Haven

  • Running Repair Shop, approved on the July Bond Commission, is underway.  Relocation of road work and prep construction are currently being done.

The M-2 Car Rehabilitation/Overhaul Project

  • Underway since 2001, completing the rehab of nearly a third of the passenger cars to date.
  • As of October 1, 2005, 43 pairs or 86 passenger cars have been rehabilitated and put back in service.
  • The M-2 Critical System Replacement Program includes window replacement, cleaning and replacement of passenger seats, new painting on the outside of the cars, and a new upgraded electrical system to include replacing heating, A/C, lighting and propulsion systems, and a new sealed waste disposal system.
  • To date nearly:

-            98% of all window repair and glazing,

-            34% of the electronic work,

-            33% of the outside painting, and

-            30% of the seat replacements are completed.