Sometimes, I really hate traffic in Connecticut. 95 is a nightmare and 91 is not that much better. However, our travel woes may soon be over once this commuter rail comes into the picture.
Yes. You read that right. It’s finally happening.
Hartford Courant reports that the long-overdue Hartford to New Haven line becomes a reality this May. And, before you compare it to that bus line to nowhere, people will actually use this. Also, it might come in handy for those really wanting to avoid tolls.
Because you know they will come… we just don’t know when.
So far, the line will run 17 daily round trips and stop in Meriden, Berlin, and Wallingford. A trip to Hartford to New Haven will take about 45 minutes.
This commuter rail will run under the name CT Rail. Already it received $769 million from state transportation chiefs who have a stake in the new line.
Most of all, environmental advocates say a commuter rail is the answer to pollution, congestion, and gas consumption. Right now, projections forecast the rail line will take a minimum of 1 million cars off the road by 2030.
Which means, it’ll drive down the demand for gas, which will reduce the price at the pump. On top of that, they predict air pollution will drop by tens of thousands of metric tons.
However, as expected, some people critically panned the announcement. The biggest complaint had to do with the state’s dwindling Special Transportation Fund.
Also, residents complained that this announcement came at the worst possible time. Meaning, just as the state said it’ll cut Shoreline East service.
Richard Andreski, the state’s bureau chief of public transportation, summed up the sour notes:
“The timing is unfortunate. We’re introducing new services as we’re taking away existing ones — in some ways, it’s a right-pocket, left-pocket situation.”
Several workers who rely on Metro North’s Shore Line East to get to work criticized the move. Several workers say their commutes will suffer because of this new commuter line. So far, no proposals came forward about restoring cuts to that particular line.
In addition, because the state suspended future projects, it jeopardizes the construction of new train stations in North Haven and West Hartford.
However, the response to this new commuter line is mostly positive. In fact, many believe this is just what Hartford needs to get back on the map.
Many say Hartford lays forgotten because of its location and economic woes. Supporters hail the commuter line as a new way to bring residents into the state capital.
Also, predictions that the line will positively affect Hartford Yard Goats games surfaced.
Either way, a new way to commute to Hartford arrives this May. Do you think it’ll do more harm than good? Write your predictions in the comments below.