PALMER, Mass. (WWLP) – A rally went underway in Palmer Sunday night for residents who support the return of a rail stop in town.
“It’s been an ongoing restoration project and our ultimate goal is to have a train service here once again,” said Scarlet Lamothe, owner of the Steaming Tender Restaurant.
The Steaming Tender Restaurant was once the town’s train station, and people have been advocating for much of their lives to bring back rail service. This industrial revolution station has been fully restored to bring back its full potential as both a restaurant and a station shop.
“It’s exciting because it’s been in the works for a long, long, long time,” Lamothe continued. “My father worked on it ever since he bought the building, and I know a lot of people look forward to that…. it’s been almost 50 years since we’ve seen the passenger service here.”
Sunday’s event was in support of the East West Rail service in Palmer. Now advocates are trying to bring a rail service back to the town to boost the local economy.
I think it shows how much people are excited about the promise of a rail. What it means for Palmer, what it means for central and western Massachusetts, the jobs that it’ll create.
…. It’s also important for the environment… It’ll take thousands of cars off the roads, cleaner air, it’ll help with housing prices, connecting people with homes that they can afford. And it’ll create thousands and thousands of jobs.Senator Eric Lesser
Many public leaders support the effort and believe it could bring an economic boost to the area. The idea for a railway connecting western Massachusetts with the rest of the state has been years in the making.
Many business owners are enthusiastic about the idea of the expansion, hoping that it points to overall revitalization throughout the Commonwealth.