Suozzi Leads Over 20 Members of Congress from New York and New England Calling for Federal Authorization of North Atlantic Rail Corporation to Build High-Speed Rail Across the Entire Northeast
Today, Congressman Tom Suozzi (D-Long Island, Queens) led 22 Members of Congress from the states most affected in an urgent call to authorize the North Atlantic Rail Corporation (NARC) to receive federal funds to design, build, and oversee a high-speed rail (HSR) project across the Northeast. The first of its kind, the bold and forward-thinking project would increase frequency and reliability of travel across the region, while fueling economic growth, creating thousands of jobs for decades to come, and reducing carbon emissions.
The letter -- backed by influential Members of Congress such as Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Gregory Meeks, Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern, House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, and Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark -- represent a large bloc of elected officials from the seven states affected who believe now is the time for Congress to act urgently and authorize the building of high-speed rail across the Northeast.
“Now is the time to authorize this massive high-speed rail project which will not only dramatically improve the quality of life and economy of the seven states affected, it will also produce an enormous amount of jobs,” said Suozzi. “With infrastructure talk happening in Washington every day, now is the time for a big, bold investment in a high-speed rail that will further economic prosperity in the Northeast for years to come. It’s on all of us in the Northeast to build a coalition and do all we can to make high-speed rail a reality.”
“We are writing to request that you and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee strongly consider the inclusion of authorization for North Atlantic Rail Corporation (NARC), in the surface transportation reauthorization. This authorization will be the delivery vehicle for the North Atlantic Rail (NAR) Network, a bold transportation infrastructure project under consideration for the New York/New England region. The North Atlantic Rail Network will be the nation’s first integrated high-speed, high-performance, and regional rail network, serving the seven-state New York/New England region. It can serve as a prototype for new 21st-century rail networks in the nation’s other megaregions,” the lawmakers wrote in their letter.
Regional stakeholders who support this letter led by Suozzi includes New York Laborers; North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters; Long Island Association; Windham Chamber of Commerce; The Rauch Foundation; A Better City; The Providence Foundation; Pawtucket Foundation; Metro Hartford Alliance; Stony Brook University; Central Connecticut Chambers of Commerce; Rhode Island Building Trades.
The North Atlantic Rail’s proposal would create a new 100-minute HSR service between New York City and Boston, using both existing publicly-owned rail and utility corridors and new rights-of-way. Drastically reducing travel times, the rail project would increase frequency and reliability of travel across the Northeast. For Long Island, it will include a new high-speed rail line from Ronkonkoma to Penn Station, a tunnel-line from Ronkonkoma to New England across the Long Island Sound; modernization of LIRR Main Line to Riverhead and Oyster Bay Branch, and the creation of 4 new stations in the Bronx. Regionally, stations would also be located at all of the mid-sized cities and suburban centers, along with new stations serving major universities and research institutions adjoining the corridor.
Text of the letter can be found here.
The letter was signed by U.S. Representatives Tom Suozzi (NY), Richard Neal (MA), Gregory Meeks (NY), Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (NY), Katherine Clark (MA), John Larson (CT), Seth Moulton (MA), Jim Himes (CT), David Cicilline (RI), Stephen Lynch (MA), Ritchie Torres (NY), Chris Pappas (NH), Kathleen Rice (NY), Jim Langevin (RI), Jake Auchincloss (MA), Peter Welch (VT), Grace Meng (NY), Jim McGovern (MA), Bill Keating (MA), Annie Kuster (NH), Chellie Pingree (ME), Ayanna Pressley (MA), and Lori Trahan (MA).
A breakdown of reduction in travel time between major High Speed Rail posts across the region are found below:
New York City to Boston, Massachusetts: Travel time would be reduced to 100 minutes. Currently, travel time from New York City to Boston via train averages around four hours.
Jamaica, Queens to New York City: Travel time will be reduced to 10 minutes. Currently, travel time from Jamaica Queens to New York City via train averages around 30 minutes.
Jamaica, Queens to New Haven: Travel time will be reduced to 36 minutes. Currently, travel time from Jamaica, Queens to New Haven via train averages around 2 hours.
New York City to New Haven, Connecticut: Travel time would be reduced to 46 minutes. Currently, travel time from New Haven to New York City via train averages around 94 minutes.
Hartford, Connecticut to New Haven, Connecticut: Travel time would be reduced to 18 minutes. Currently, travel time from Hartford to New Haven via train averages around 53 minutes.
Springfield, Massachusetts to Boston, Massachusetts: Travel time will be reduced to 97 minutes. Currently, travel time from Springfield to Boston via train averages around 148 minutes.
Springfield, Massachusetts to Providence, Massachusetts: Travel time will be reduced to 70 minutes. Currently, travel time from Springfield to Providence via train averages around 5 hours.