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Rail Proposal Calls For Long Island Sound Tunnel

High-speed rail project would cost $103 billion for new service between Washington D.C. and Boston, make Long Island an important hub.

The fabled cross-Sound tunnel, a project that's taken on many forms and spanned the decades, has gained new life as part of a high-speed rail proposal serving 27 million passengers connecting Boston with Washington D.C.  

As part of a pitch to Amtrak for its Northeast Corridor vision plan, the University of Pennsylvania's School of Design called for a tunnel spanning the Long Island Sound from Port Jefferson to Milford, Conn., according to The Hartford Courant.

That's nothing new for Long Islanders, who were told when the first section of the that the roadway would eventually connect Oyster Bay with Rye, N.Y. The Rte. 135 tunnel never materialized.

The 450-mile, $103 billion route offered up by PennDesign would include an 18-mile long tunnel, phase two of the overall project to be completed by 2035. The rail would make in Ronkonkoma a hub and move west to undisclosed stops in Suffolk and Nassau en route to JFK Airport and then New York City.

Under the cross-Sound plan, Long Island would be linked more closely with New Haven and Hartford.

Amtrak's own proposal, with trains reaching top speeds of 200 mph, bypasses Long Island entirely and is estimated at $151 billion.

The dual plans are both part of an overall effort that has taken shape since President Barack Obama took office to improve rail service in the so-called Northeast "mega-region," and get more high-speed trains in service between Washington and Boston.

Half of the new rail system would be built adjacent to existing lines, such as the Long Island Rail Road, the PennDesign report said. It would cut down congestion on roadways and at airports, reduce pollution and traffic deaths as well as for Long Islanders.

Another benefit to the new rail line, the report said, would be coupling with the telecom industry to lay fiber optic cable and energy companies for natural gas pipelines.

With reporting by  and .

meowkats4 September 09, 2012 at 01:24 AM
We have this same article on our Patch here in Connecticut, Amtrak was thinking about going through Connecticut with NO STOPS, then someone here in Connecticut must have put their political foot down and then it was agreed the plans would have 3 stops in Connecticut. Two days later out came the plan of University of Pennsylvania's School of Design, again coming down from Boston right through Connecticut and going under the Long Island Sound! I agree, we need to see more infrastructure being done here in the good ole USA. We have fallen behind compared to other countries. We need to know more about this whole thing. These trains are going to run at very high speeds and NOT make a lot of STOPS (Boston to Washington D.C.)
Fred September 09, 2012 at 01:48 PM
first of all, the Amtrak plan that avoids LI costs 151 bill as opposed to the cross sound idea at 101 bill, so I'm sure our government will pick the most expensive one ( more patronage jobs, pork spending). Second, whose saying that this train is actually stopping here. Having Acela trains rocket through Port Jeff at 200 mph every hour doesn't exactly help our economy. The idea of connecting LI to CT by tunnel or bridge is logical, in fact almost necessary, but lets face it, it will never get done. I can't put up a 5 foot fence this town without months of paperwork and a ton of money.
Jason September 09, 2012 at 02:29 PM
Just another scam where they quote 103 billion and 180 billion dollars later, the project is still unfinished and your taxes have doubled. No thanks.
Paul Packer September 09, 2012 at 03:15 PM
This would create a lot more business opportunities and create a lot more jobs in Long Island. And a rail line eliminates the car traffic that an automobile bridge or tunnel would create. I'd like to hear more details about the plans. This could be a big economic boon for LI.
LivingSmall September 28, 2012 at 06:28 PM
Don't worry. The Mayan calendar didn't go that high.

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