Governor Lamont, Connecticut Congressional Delegation Announce Nearly $2 Billion From Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for Rail Projects Across the State
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, U.S. Representative John Larson (CT-01), U.S. Representative Joe Courtney (CT-02), U.S. Representative Rosa DeLauro (CT-03), U.S. Representative Jim Himes (CT-04), and U.S. Representative Jahana Hayes (CT-05) today announced the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has selected ten projects in Connecticut for a total of nearly $2 billion in federal funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). The grants are funded through the Northeast Corridor (NEC) Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Program, which received an increase of $24 billion thanks to the IIJA.
This NEC Federal-State Partnership investment will be supported by nearly $400 million in state funding that Governor Lamont and members of the State Bond Commission voted to approve in October.
Governor Lamont said, “President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law continues delivering for Connecticut and the entire region. The Northeast Corridor is the busiest rail line in the nation, and improvements here mean more jobs, continued economic growth, and improved quality of life. Many of our railroad bridges are more than 100 years old, and this major investment of funding ensures that trains can operate with higher speeds and fewer disruptions well into the future. I applaud and thank President Biden and the members of Connecticut’s Congressional delegation for working with our administration to secure this funding for our state.”
Senator Murphy said, “When Congress was writing the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, my number one priority was making sure any legislation we passed made long-term, historic investments in modernizing the Northeast Corridor. I’m thrilled that Connecticut is receiving $2 billion in federal funding to make our rail system faster, safer, and more advanced. Investing in the future of rail in Connecticut is a no-brainer – it makes life easier for travelers and commuters, boosts economic growth, creates good-paying jobs, and helps fight the climate crisis. I will always be a champion for the NEC in Washington.”
Senator Blumenthal said, “This massive, history-making rail money – a federal $2 billion investment – means faster train trips and more good-paying construction jobs for Connecticut. It will be strikingly visible and impactful in our everyday lives – replacing aged bridges and unsteady tracks, vastly enhancing safety and reliability, promoting more on time, affordable travel. It will empower a transportation transformation, bringing our rail system into the 21st century. Federal investment in our crumbling infrastructure is long overdue, and I’m thrilled that our delegation has fought hard and successfully for dollars our state needs and deserves.”
Representative Larson said, “The Hartford Line unites the cities of Springfield, Hartford, and New Haven via passenger rail, expanding transit connections and economic opportunity for residents and businesses across our ‘Knowledge Corridor.’ I am thrilled to announce record infrastructure funding the Connecticut delegation secured for track repairs and expansions across the Northeast Corridor, including more than $100 million dedicated to Hartford Line improvements. These investments will support more frequent and reliable passenger rail service to better connect residents across the region.”
Representative Courtney said, “This long overdue transformational grant for the Connecticut River Bridge comes after a determination in 2006 that the bridge was ‘structurally deficient’ and repair work was no longer capable of keeping it functional. Despite chronic underfunding of Amtrak’s capital accounts, I have worked with my colleagues in the Connecticut delegation since 2007 to secure initial funding of $130.4 million for design and planning of this project. Today’s announcement of an additional $826 million federal grant ensures that the entire construction phase will be fully funded, and not delayed any more by incremental piecemeal grants. This development will provide a stable horizon for contractors to acquire materials and workforce, and is a testament to the importance of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed in 2021 that provided a historic level of resources to Amtrak. Make no mistake – this monumental investment was only possible because of this law. When this new bridge is finished, rail traffic will be safer and faster, for passengers on the Northeast Corridor-Acela Express, Northeast Regional, and Shoreline East, as well as freight traffic. It is a generational investment for the most heavily traveled rail system in America that will pay dividends for decades to come.”
Representative DeLauro said, “I’m proud to join Governor Lamont today to celebrate the bold investment of $2 billion in Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funding across the state of Connecticut. These upgrades being announced today will ensure that rail infrastructure will continue to be recognized as a critical component in statewide and regional transportation. When I was Chair of the House Appropriations Committee I helped pass the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act so government could enhance accessibility, mobility, and the customer experience for thousands of New Haven County residents who use this mode of transportation every day. When we invest in our public transit system, we ensure that everyone has access to opportunity which is vital in amplifying economic activity along Connecticut’s shoreline.”
Representative Himes said, “After years in Congress fighting for federal money to upgrade and replace Norwalk’s Walk Bridge and the Westport Saugatuck River Bridge, I am elated to have helped secure nearly $500 million to bring these projects across the finish line. I spend much of my time as a representative thinking about how to modernize the rail systems and bridges in our community, but the best part about receiving a grant like this is knowing that eventually my constituents won’t have to think about infrastructure at all. Rather than stressing about traffic delays or train disruptions, commuters will be free to think about that big project at work, an upcoming homework assignment, or whatever else matters most in their lives. Today is one of those moments when we get to celebrate real progress that will make a difference for the next hundred years.”
Representative Hayes said, “The monumental investments of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) continue to truly impact the day-to-day life of residents across the state. This time it’s $2 billion for Connecticut rail and bridge projects to connect more communities. Great to see the IIJA transform our state through improved infrastructure and good-paying jobs.”
Connecticut Transportation Commissioner Garrett Eucalitto said, “This grant funding helps address a backlog of major projects and improvements that will help improve the safety and reliability of rail service, offer operational flexibility and provide for increased capacity, speed, and efficiencies of rail transportation along the Northeast Corridor. Thank you to the FRA for supporting these projects and thank you to Governor Lamont and state legislature for ensuring we had the matching funds ready to go with our grant applications.”
Connecticut will receive a total of $1,998,799,600 in funding for ten projects, including:
- $826.65 million for the Connecticut River Bridge Replacement Project: This project includes construction to replace the existing 116-year-old Connecticut River bridge between Old Saybrook and Old Lyme, with a modern and resilient new moveable bridge immediately to the south of the existing structure. The bridge serves the NEC main line as well as Amtrak’s intercity services, Connecticut Shore Line East commuter service, and freight operators.
- $465 million for the WALK Bridge Replacement Project: This project will replace the existing deteriorated bridge with a resilient bridge structure to improve safety and reliability of rail service along the New Haven Line and NEC, while improving navigational capacity and dependability for marine traffic in the Norwalk River.
- $245.92 million for the Devon Bridge Replacement Project: This project will provide a safe and reliable bridge crossing for rail over the river and marine navigation under the rail. The Devon Bridge serves as a critical transportation link between Stamford and New Haven on MNR’s New Haven Line and between New York and Boston on Amtrak’s NEC and carries 6,300 passengers every day.
- $122.8 million for the New Haven Line Power Improvement Program: This project is a phased approach to replace power equipment across three areas of the New Haven Line Power System, including replacement of two signal substations, two balancing substations, and power apparatus at three supply substations.
- $119.32 million for Devon Bridge Interim Repairs: This project will ensure the bridge can be structurally reliable until a major rehabilitation or replacement can occur as described in the Devon Bridge Replacement description above.
- $104.87 million for the Hartford Line Rail Program Double Track Phase 3B Project: This project will improve three single-track sections (totaling approximately 6.2 miles of track improvements) to double track sections to increase the frequency and speed of passenger rail service and to address the intercity transportation needs of Connecticut, Central Massachusetts, Boston, and Vermont.
- $71.65 million for the New Haven Line Track Improvement and Mobility Enhancement Part 1 and 3: This project includes project development and final design for track improvements between mileposts 56.8 and 60.1 on the New Haven Line in Connecticut as well as reconstruction of seven rail overpass bridges and upgrade of all tracks to FRA Class 6 standards, track realignments, installation of a new interlocking, replacement of catenary system components, and railbed drainage improvements.
- $23.2 million for the Saugatuck River Bridge Replacement: This project will replace the bascule bridge which carries four railroad tracks over the Saugatuck River in Westport, which will improve safety and allow increases to the maximum authorized speed through this section of track.
- $15.4 million for the New Haven Line Network Infrastructure Upgrade Project: This project will provide security infrastructure upgrades at stations throughout Metro-North Railroad territory and at Cos Cob bridge and network connectivity at 60 locations by connecting them into the 144-fiber optic back bone.
- $4 million for the New Haven to Providence Capacity Planning Study: This project is a planning study for future infrastructure, speed, and capacity improvement options between New Haven and Providence, Rhode Island.
In addition to the $1.1 billion received by the Connecticut Department of Transportation in this round of grants, the FRA has also provided a letter of intent to the state agency committing upwards of $2 billion for the future construction of the Devon Bridge Replacement Project.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Grant Program funds capital projects that reduce the state of good repair backlog, improve performance, or expand or establish new intercity passenger rail service, including privately operated intercity passenger rail service.