HSRA Promotes New Train Service at Wisconsin Capitol

Alliance staff and volunteers shared information about proposed train service with a bipartisan group of Wisconsin lawmakers and staffers who represent about one-quarter of the districts in the state. The presentations and discussion were part of a Legislative Day at the Wisconsin Capitol on February 1. The Alliance worked with All Aboard Wisconsin and WisARP to plan the event, which also included briefings from state transportation officials on Wisconsin’s plans for expanded passenger service.

The Legislative Day aimed to help elected officials and their staff members understand the process that Wisconsin—and dozens of other states—have now embarked on through the Federal Railroad Administration’s new Corridor ID program. In December, the FRA awarded Wisconsin five out of 69 Corridor ID grants in 44 states nationwide. Proposed service in Wisconsin would directly serve eight of the state’s 10 largest cities, as opposed to just two today.

The Legislative Day also aimed to show statewide support. For example, the mayors of two cities in Wisconsin’s Fox Valley, Menasha and Kaukauna, talked about the importance of establishing train service between Milwaukee and Green Bay. This line would serve the communities they lead, and the mayors conveyed strong support from both citizens and local business leaders.

State officials explained that the Corridor ID process will detail facts on the ground and show the viability of proposed new service. They also shared how improving infrastructure can benefit both freight railroads and passenger trains, as well as providing alternatives to long drives for rural residents.

You can learn more about the Alliance’s vision for train service in the Midwest here.

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