FOR RELEASE:2/23/2007
TELEPHONE: (860) 594-3062
Fax: (860) 594-3066

Governor Rell Proposes $5 Million

to Begin Train Station Improvements

Station Inspection Report Posted Online

Governor M. Jodi Rell and the Department of Transportation (DOT) today released the details of the DOT’s Rail Station Inspection Report. In her 2007-2009 budget, Governor Rell committed $5 million in her third transportation package as a kick-off to fund a statewide rail station improvement program to be managed by DOT.  The $5 million seed money will address immediate maintenance and amenity issues as identified in each Station Inspection Report. 

“If we are going to accomplish our mission of getting more commuters out of their cars and onto trains, we need – our commuters deserve – safe, attractive and functional stations and parking facilities.  I have already committed $5 million toward addressing the issues outlined in this report, and we will be building on our local partnerships to keep these enhancements moving forward.  Providing a more convenient and hassle-free commute will go a long way toward our main goal of making Connecticut a better place to do business,” said Governor Rell.

The rail station inspection reports were requested by Governor Rell on June 30, 2006.  DOT assigned staff to perform field reviews and an overall assessments of 36 train stations in Connecticut along the New Haven Rail Line (NHL) and the Branch Lines (Danbury, New Canaan and Waterbury).  In compiling the reports, the DOT team reviewed the recent studies on rail station governance and station conditions to ensure an accurate and comprehensive program.

“It is the Department’s goal to provide the support and amenities at our train stations desired by our commuters as an integral part of the Connecticut rail service.  Sound structures, good lighting and signage, cleanliness, comfortable waiting areas and benches are some of the many reasonable concerns our commuters want addressed by the Department and the municipalities,” said Commissioner Ralph J. Carpenter. “We will working over the next few months with local municipalities to address the immediate maintenance issues and will look to the next several years to bring these stations to a level that is expected by Connecticut rail riders.” 

The DOT reviewed highway access, parking, platforms, canopies, stairs and ramps, illumination, walkways and paths, ticket vending machines, shelters, diversity of New Haven Line station buildings, waiting rooms and concession areas, paint, taxi stands and bus access, signage, public address and variable message sign systems, fencing, litter, ADA access, station amenities, kiosks and information, station color scheme, railings, light fixtures, trash and recycling containers, bicycle racks and lockers, and platform and station clocks.

The Department estimates that $100 million will be needed over the next 5-10 years to complete the first four categories work required: short-term maintenance, “state of good repair,” platform improvements and amenity upgrades. Major capital project costs are estimated at an additional $289 million and would include extension of high-level platform and canopies, replacement or addition of shelters, and major ADA improvements. It should be noted that these numbers are by no means the full responsibility of the state and funding sources have not yet been identified.

The State of Connecticut owns all but three of the 36 New Haven Line stations. Of the remaining three stations, Bridgeport and South Norwalk are owned by the municipality, and Greenwich is privately owned. The State has delegated the maintenance and operation of 24 stations to municipalities and their transit districts or parking authorities.  DOT and its contract operators are responsible for the 12 remaining facilities.  The Department’s Office of Rail will be sending a letter to each responsible party of the 24 rail stations over the next month to initiate repairs and upgrades.

The reports can be viewed on the DOT Website at