The Vermont Transportation Board at 6 p.m. on November 16 will hold a public forum in White River Junction on transportation policy associated with trains, both passenger and freight. The Board wants to discuss railroad related issues with the public – including passenger expansion to Montreal, rail-side economic development and living with railroads as neighbors – to determine how future policy can be shaped to best position Vermont’s rail interests to meet the needs of the state residents.
The forum, which will be held at the Hotel Coolidge at 39 South Main Street, is one of seven such public conversations the Board is holding around the state. Topics the Board plans to discuss include:
- Living with railroads as neighbors, and the issues they present.
- Passenger rail expansion along Vermont’s western corridor between Rutland and Burlington.
- Passenger rail expansion from various points in Vermont to Montreal.
- Truck traffic through villages and town centers, and the effect of rail expansion.
- Adjacent rail-side economic development and planning for increased rail activity.
- Starting commuter rail service linking Brattleboro to various points in Massachusetts.
- Rail Safety, including crossings, trespassing and response to potential emergency incidents.
“Vermont is poised to significantly expand passenger rail in the very near future, while at the same time the state also is seeking growth opportunities for both the movement and off-loading of freight,” said David Coen, Acting Chair of the Transportation Board. “As a result, we want to have a conversation with Vermonters to both hear their suggestions as well as understand their concerns regarding these new services and how the state uses its rail lines.”
People who cannot attend a forum can submit written comment by visiting the Board’s website at http://tboard.vermont.gov/. For more information, contact John Zicconi at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 802-828-2942.