WHAT: Several alternatives for accommodating anticipated increases in freight and passenger rail traffic through Springfield have been studied as part of the Chicago to St. Louis High-Speed Rail Environmental Impact Study (EIS). The alternatives have been narrowed down and a recommended alternative, along with its environmental impacts, will be presented at an open house for the Springfield Rail Improvements Project Advisory Group. This is the last major advisory group meeting before the study’s public hearing. Release of the EIS and the public hearing are the next steps toward selecting an alternative that will add a second track to increase the number of high-speed trains and daily round trips from Chicago to St. Louis. The media is invited to attend a briefing on the date and location listed below, which is prior to the open house for advisory group members.
WHO: Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will be presenting.
WHEN: Thursday, June 28, 2012 at 2:30 p.m., President Abraham Lincoln Hotel and Conference Center / Ballroom / 701 East Adams Street / Springfield, IL 62701
WHY: The current Chicago to St. Louis corridor operates on a single track that is shared by both traditional freight and Amtrak passenger rail service. The Chicago to St. Louis High-Speed Rail EIS is looking at alternatives for adding a second track. In addition, the other rail lines through Springfield anticipate traffic growth. Numerous alternatives for minimizing the impacts of this increasing rail traffic were studied in detail and narrowed down based on a set of evaluation criteria that included vehicle delay reductions, safety, noise and environmental impacts. The result is the recommendation of one alternative through Springfield.