Union Station

Officlas in hard hats tour Union Station
WAMC

Eight months away from the scheduled completion of the renovation of Union Station in Springfield, Amtrak officials toured the work site today with the goal of providing suggestions to make the $88.5 million publicly funded project a success.

WAMC

A new advocacy group is pushing for more rail service in the Pioneer Valley of western Massachusetts.

The founders of Trains in The Valley will host a public meeting later today in Northampton which will include a website launch.  

WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Trains in The Valley co-founder Ben Hecksher.

WAMC

Commuter trains could begin running on new high speed rail tracks in western Massachusetts with stops in Springfield, Holyoke, Northampton and Greenfield as soon as the spring of 2017.  That was the prediction this week from the state’s top transportation official. 

Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollock said MassDOT will develop a memorandum of understanding with the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission for a demonstration project on the Knowledge Corridor rail line.

"  We would see it as a pilot service," Pollack said.

WAMC

The redevelopment of Union Station in Springfield, Massachusetts into a regional transportation hub – a project that took decades to realize – is one year away from completion

The $88.5 million taxpayer-funded project is on-time and on-budget according to Christopher Moskal, executive director of the Springfield Redevelopment Authority.

"Right on budget, right on time we should be open to the public in late December ( 2016)," said Moskal.

WAMC

Massachusetts U.S. Senator Edward Markey has been in western Massachusetts the last two days. Markey met with mayors in North Adams, Northampton, Pittsfield and Springfield.

After meeting with Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno in his city hall office Tuesday afternoon, Markey said the common denominator to help boost the economies of the cities of western Massachusetts is transportation.  He said he is hopeful Congress can strike a deal to keep federal funds flowing to highway, bridge, and rail projects for the next three years.

WAMC

What officials said is the final piece of funding for a major transportation project in western Massachusetts was announced today in Springfield.

Massachusetts is committing the remaining funds needed to complete the redevelopment of Union Station in Springfield into an intermodal regional transportation hub. It brings the total amount of federal, state, and local funds for the project to $88.5 million.

WAMC

Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito is working to build strong ties between the Baker administration and municipal government leaders.   She is doing it one small meeting at a time as she travels around the state. 

Polito has visited more than 40 municipalities in Massachusetts since late January, leaving her with more than 300 to go. Her plan is to visit all 351 communities in the state before her first four-year term is up.

A series of construction and redevelopment projects will be accomplished in 2017 that officials in Springfield, Massachusetts believe will allow the city to shed its image as a decaying former industrial city.    Springfield’s chief development officer laid out a vision of the city’s economic future – some of it admittedly speculative -- in a presentation last night to business leaders and civic boosters.

WAMC

A new era of train travel has arrived in western Massachusetts. High-speed passenger service has come to the region because of new tracks, crossing signals and other upgrades paid for by the multi-billion dollar economic recovery bill passed by the Congress in 2009.

WAMC

A new financing plan was announced today to accelerate the redevelopment of Union Station in Springfield, Massachusetts

       City officials said a proposed addition of $3.2 million in local funds along with a previously announced $4.2 million grant from the state will allow the transit-focused elements of the project to be completed simultaneously with tenant-ready commercial space and additional parking.

     "It is a big achievement having all the money that is now needed to get this project done," said Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno.

WAMC

With an $82 million renovation of the derelict Union Station in Springfield, Massachusetts under way, officials went looking for guidance from transit-oriented development in two Connecticut cities.

A delegation of business and civic leaders from greater Springfield got a possible glimpse of the future when they looked out over the ornate great hall of Union Station in New Haven, Ct. where 11,000 people a day pass through mostly off commuter trains to New York City.

Ridership rose dramatically on Pioneer Valley Transit Authority buses after Massachusetts state-financed service changes took effect earlier this year.  Nationally, it appears public transit is growing more popular.

   Ridership jumped 12 percent in September and 9 percent in October as the state’s second-largest transit authority rolled out the biggest change in fixed-route bus schedules in nearly a decade.  PVTA Administrator Mary MacInnes said she was thrilled by the latest ridership data.

Sturmovik at en.wikipedia

A $73 million project to restore passenger rail service along the Connecticut River line in Massachusetts, dubbed the Knowledge Corridor, is on track to be finished by the end of this year. The rail infrastructure improvements bring the promise of speedier Amtrak service and the potential for commuter rail service.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Dana Roscoe, a transportation expert with the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission.

Sturmovik at en.wikipedia

Massachusetts is facing huge budget deficits in its highway and mass transit systems. The Patrick administration is likely to call early next year for higher taxes and tolls.  The state, meanwhile, is putting millions of dollars more into a major transportation project in western Massachusetts.   WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

WAMC

A general contractor has been selected to manage the building of a major transportation project in western Massachusetts.  A recent influx of federal  funds  has the long  stalled redevelopment of Springfield’s derelict train station back on the fast track, as WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports

WAMC

The Obama administration Monday announced more than $700 million for transportation projects across the country. The administration’s transportation secretary visited Springfield Massachusetts to highlight one of the projects.   WAMC”s Pioneer  Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.