Safety and security grant proposed for Amtrak trains between Springfield and Northfield

Local News

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) submitted a grant application to improve safety for passengers traveling on the Knowledge Corridor Rail in western Massachusetts.

The proposal includes $18 million to improve safety along the Knowledge Corridor of four passenger trains that stops in Springfield, Holyoke, Northampton, and Greenfield.

Knowledge Corridor passenger rail improvements would include the following:

  • Security fencing to minimize trespassing
  • Blue Light Emergency Call Box Stations
  • CCTV cameras at stations
  • Expanded Amtrak police radio coverage
  • Buried fiber optic cable throughout the corridor
  • Innovative surveillance equipment such as an aerial drone
  • Polaris Ranger Utility Task Vehicle
  • T-20 hand-thrown switch machines along the line

The application submitted for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s federal Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) Grant Program also included a disproportionate amount of Amtrak reported incidents and arrests.

“This federal discretionary grant program gives us an opportunity to take on multi-modal projects that will increase and improve safer public travel options across the Commonwealth,” said Acting Transportation Secretary and CEO Jamey Tesler. “RAISE Grants have the potential to open doors to safer, more efficient, and more secure travel where we have seen a demand from the public for improved connections and we appreciate the support of community members and advocates who have worked closely with members of the MassDOT team to put forth these comprehensive project applications.”

The RAISE grants are scheduled to be awarded by November 22, 2021.

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