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Old 01-20-2016, 08:34 AM
 
Location: Northeast states
11,910 posts, read 9,811,974 times
Reputation: 3499

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“Our companies are leaving Connecticut for Boston,” Old Lyme resident Daniel Warren said at the Hartford hearing, referring to General Electric’s recent announcement that it will leave its Fairfield headquarters. “It’s not just because of taxes — it’s because [Boston] is a town where people want to live. A strong rail connection, I think, is the future for our area … we need to make a bold, strong statement.”

Connecticut residents from across the state aired their opinions at a public hearing held in Hartford last Wednesday with representatives from the Federal Railroad Administration. Many attendees expressed concern that a proposed section of new track running from Old Saybrook, Connecticut to Kenyon, Rhode Island might have a negative impact on the environment and the region’s historic town centers. Other attendees, however, were enthusiastic about the proposals that might establish a high-speed rail line running from Boston to Washington, D.C. They said access to mass transit is important for millennials across the state.



Steve Mitchell — a board member from the East Coast Greenway Alliance, a body that oversees the administration and construction of a proposed Maine-to-Florida bike path — also spoke at the hearing. Mitchell said allowing bicycles on trains might help Connecticut attract young professionals, as millennials favor to bicycle-friendly cities like Boston.
Joseph McGee, vice president of public policy and programs for the Business Council of Fairfield County, was skeptical of both ideas, which involve substantial amounts of potentially costly tunneling in Connecticut. He told the News that devoting those funds to improving the current four-track line running between New Haven and New York might be more efficient.


“We think it’d be much cheaper, and it’s reinforcing the historic commitment to these growth corridors that have existed for 150 years linking New Haven and New York,” McGee said. “You’re proposing enormous environmental challenges, when for far less money and far less disruption, you may be able to accomplish similar things with existing rail lines.”
McGee also cast doubt on the wisdom of pursuing high-speed intercity travel rather than what he described as a more urgently needed high-speed commuter rail system connecting New York to New Haven and other towns in Connecticut. The prospect of reaching Boston in 90 minutes from New Haven sounds exciting, he said, but a 60-minute travel time between New Haven and New York offers greater opportunities for economic growth.

http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2016/0...-amtrak-plans/
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Old 01-20-2016, 08:58 AM
 
4,627 posts, read 4,944,331 times
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well, we definitely need to improve rail in the state. I've noted on here several times in the past, I took Amtrak Acela from New London to Philly several months back - the New London to New Haven trip is quick, but then the train slows to a crawl for a good portion of the New Haven to Stamford trip. (It also slows to a crawl after Newark Penn Station. The Acela stops at New London, New Haven and Stamford on their morning trip from Boston to Philly

If the New Haven to Stamford rail can be improved/upgraded to equal the New London to New Haven speed, you'd cut some serious time off the Boston to NYC or Philly trip. New London to Penn Station in New York is 2:20 in time - faster than a car during rush hour by a good deal, but it could easily be under 2 hours. (I've driven from East Lyme to JFK on a Saturday morning and made it in less than 2 hours, but no chance of that during on a weekday, and I missed a flight once when it took me 6 hours to make it to JFK...)

(Longer term - NJ needs to improve their section that goes from Newark to Philly as well, but that's not CT's concern right now.)
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Old 01-20-2016, 09:05 AM
 
Location: Northeast states
11,910 posts, read 9,811,974 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewJeffCT View Post
well, we definitely need to improve rail in the state. I've noted on here several times in the past, I took Amtrak Acela from New London to Philly several months back - the New London to New Haven trip is quick, but then the train slows to a crawl for a good portion of the New Haven to Stamford trip. (It also slows to a crawl after Newark Penn Station. The Acela stops at New London, New Haven and Stamford on their morning trip from Boston to Philly

If the New Haven to Stamford rail can be improved/upgraded to equal the New London to New Haven speed, you'd cut some serious time off the Boston to NYC or Philly trip. New London to Penn Station in New York is 2:20 in time - faster than a car during rush hour by a good deal, but it could easily be under 2 hours. (I've driven from East Lyme to JFK on a Saturday morning and made it in less than 2 hours, but no chance of that during on a weekday, and I missed a flight once when it took me 6 hours to make it to JFK...)

(Longer term - NJ needs to improve their section that goes from Newark to Philly as well, but that's not CT's concern right now.)
I like Center City in Philly it feel like smaller Manhattan
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Old 01-20-2016, 09:17 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
29,463 posts, read 46,347,411 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctguy87 View Post
Nice list. If there are to be tolls, the borders would be ideal - but I can see that being met with opposition from those in Greenwich, Enfield, Danbury, etc, with an argument that people will take local roads to cross the border. I'm sure some would, but it wouldn't be worth the effort. The worst possible scenario would be to toll CT River bridges that people are required to take if they live and work on opposite sides of the river. I would be against something along those lines.

Parking does need to be expanded at many train stations - Milford comes to mind. State owned garages where the funds collected go directly into a transportation fund is a win win.
As I have said dozens of times here, the Feds will not allow just border tolls. The tolls will have to be spread across the entire roadway. Jay
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Old 01-20-2016, 09:31 AM
 
453 posts, read 430,345 times
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Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
As I have said dozens of times here, the Feds will not allow just border tolls. The tolls will have to be spread across the entire roadway. Jay
Source? I've never heard of this. Every news article that comes up in google searching says the state is looking most in-depth at border tolls.
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Old 01-20-2016, 12:41 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
29,463 posts, read 46,347,411 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctguy87 View Post
Source? I've never heard of this. Every news article that comes up in google searching says the state is looking most in-depth at border tolls.
Then you have not read this thread completely. There is no source since this is a FHWA (Federal Highway Administration) policy decision. They are not going not want to start border wars between states over tolls.

So you know FHWA is the branch of the US Department of Transportation that controls interstate highways in our country. Interstate highways that currently have tolls were built before the Interstate Highway law went into effect back in the late 50's. They also receive less funding from the federal highway trust fund. I-95 in Connecticut was one of those highways up until the 80's when Connecticut did away with tolls. The state now receives and has received more federal money for the maintenance and rebuilding of I-95 than they did before tolls were removed.

Allowing tolls on interstate highways is a newly enacted special exception that FHWA has granted several states for projects they deem important enough to warrant an exception because without the money the construction would not happen in a timely manner. Connecticut received that exception for I-95 from New Haven to New York, I-84 in Hartford and I-84 from Waterbury to Danbury. Even though they received that exception, they have to go by FHWA policy to implement tolls. If not they could lose Federal money and risk having to repay FHWA for the millions that have been received for highway upgrades and maintenance over the years. This has not been tested but I doubt Connecticut or any state for that matter would be willing to try and tie up millions because they only want to toll people coming into our state. Jay
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Old 01-20-2016, 01:48 PM
 
453 posts, read 430,345 times
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If it's an FHWA policy decision, it would be documented and be able to be proven. Border tolls are at the forefront of ideas in every article from the last 12 months about CT tolls.

Drive to Reinstate Connecticut Tolls Would Start at Border - WSJ
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Old 01-20-2016, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
29,463 posts, read 46,347,411 times
Reputation: 9137
Quote:
Originally Posted by ctguy87 View Post
If it's an FHWA policy decision, it would be documented and be able to be proven. Border tolls are at the forefront of ideas in every article from the last 12 months about CT tolls.

Drive to Reinstate Connecticut Tolls Would Start at Border - WSJ
You can't read the article without a subscription but the title says it all: "... tolls would start at the border". It does not say "be at the border". And if you want to plow through piles of FHWA papers be my guest. I stand by what I said, FHWA is NOT going to allow the state to just place a toll at the border. Jay
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Old 01-20-2016, 02:01 PM
 
453 posts, read 430,345 times
Reputation: 282
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
You can't read the article without a subscription but the title says it all: "... tolls would start at the border". It does not say "be at the border". And if you want to plow through piles of FHWA papers be my guest. I stand by what I said, FHWA is NOT going to allow the state to just place a toll at the border. Jay
What you are stating has no precedent and cannot be stated definitively. FHWA has never made that stipulation in the past and there is no reason to believe they would start in CT.
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Old 01-20-2016, 03:54 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
29,463 posts, read 46,347,411 times
Reputation: 9137
Quote:
Originally Posted by ctguy87 View Post
What you are stating has no precedent and cannot be stated definitively. FHWA has never made that stipulation in the past and there is no reason to believe they would start in CT.
They have made no stipulation in the past because this program is new and no state has even used it yet. I have attended presentations given by CTDOT on their I-95 Congestion Relief Study and the question was asked and answered by CTDOT officials there. For tolls to be added to I-95 they have to be added for ALL USERS of the highway, not just those at the state line. They could also be added to any new lane added to the highway alone. You can read the studies conducted by CDM Smith on this at the website below. Jay

Welcome - CT Congestion Study
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