Higher-speed trains and inter-city rail service in New England remain on track despite a congressional budget deal that eliminated spending.
Transportation officials in Connecticut and Massachusetts say money has already been allocated from stimulus spending in 2009 and other federal funds. Work on a higher-speed rail line in Vermont was completed in 2012, and officials are looking to extend rail service from the shoreline of Long Island Sound to western Massachusetts.
Timothy Brennan is executive director of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission in Springfield, Mass. He says a $73 million project to rebuild a north-south rail line connecting Springfield, Holyoke, Northampton and Greenfield will be finished by year's end.
He says trains will travel at an average speed of 70 mph, making it competitive with cars along Interstate 91.