Baker touts expanded train service in state’s western region

June 12, 2018

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) — Massachusetts officials plan to hire a consultant to study the possibility of passenger rail service between Boston and Springfield.

Republican Gov. Charlie Baker announced the feasibility study on Tuesday at Union Station in Springfield, while also announcing that passenger rail service between that city and Greenfield will begin on an experimental basis next spring.

Rail service between Boston and Springfield has long been sought by western Massachusetts officials, several of whom attended the event. Democratic U.S. Rep. Richard Neal called it a potential “game changer” for the region.

The Springfield-to-Greenfield service will be operated by Amtrak but funded by the state.

Baker also noted that expanded passenger rail service on the 62-mile Hartford Line between Springfield and New Haven, Connecticut begins June 16, with trains running about every 45 minutes.