It's been 34 years since the fine folks of Roanoke, Va., have had intercity rail service, but that's about to change.
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell today announced that the Commonwealth of Virginia, Norfolk Southern, Amtrak and the City of Roanoke have joined together to start work to extend Amtrak Virginia's rail service from Lynchburg to Roanoke.
"We're cutting a lot of ribbons," McDonnell says. "We're building new roads and railways all around the Commonwealth. All of this will lead to new jobs for our citizens, and a more prosperous Virginia. And right here in Roanoke, it means the return of intercity passenger rail service to the Star City. "
Extending the state's highly-successful Lynchburg line is anticipated to take between three and four years.
"This new service to Roanoke connects passengers to other areas of the Commonwealth as well as cities along the Northeast Corridor," says Amtrak President and CEO Joe Boardman. "We offer travelers a safe, efficient and reliable alternative that mitigates the effect of high gas prices and pervasive highway and airline congestion."
Once the Roanoke service is added, passengers will be able to access Amtrak's national network of more than 500 destinations, including the Big Apple, the City of Brotherly Love and the Nation's Capitol all just a short ride away on the Northeast Corridor.
We're thrilled to be working with the Commonwealth to bring intercity rail to more communities!