Economic Development: Smart Growth, Tourism and Business Benefit
Train service is a community asset that increases property value and sparks train-station centered smart-growth which improves land-use patterns. People move, hire and build because of train service.
By linking the universities and towns of its area, the Central Corridor Line will improve access to regional economic engines.
The region will be more attractive and competitive for tourist dollars, benefiting retail shops, restaurants, lodging, resorts and the entire economy.
Mobility for People, Knowledge and Quality of Life
The Central Corridor Line provides direct rail service between the three of the five flagship state university campuses in New England (UVM, UMass/ Amherst & UConn/Storrs), including the two largest campuses. The Central Corridor Line will link these campuses with other colleges and New England urban centers. Campus users are one of the most frequent and dependable categories of rail riders. A hub at Palmer would reach 90,000 students within 30 miles.
Train travel improves our quality of life, as riders avoid the cost of fuel, tolls, parking and wear and tear while eliminating the need to cope with highway stress and congestion. The train is quieter and safer than driving. Passengers can increase their productivity the moment they board.
As our population ages, alternatives to driving are especially important. As is providing mobility for the disabled.
The Central Corridor Line benefits areas that have been left out by other rail plans so it provides regional balance.
The Central Corridor Line is a critically important north-south freight connection for New England — and for Canada and Europe via the deep water port at New London. Freight rail service is an essential foundation for a sustainable ’green’ economy, and freight rail improvements support expanded passenger rail service.
Currently this route is not able to handle the national weight limit of 286,000 lbs. Freight customers receive cars that are not fully loaded, which puts area industries at a competitive disadvantage. Improving the tracks for passenger trains would also fix this freight issue.