Improvements are underway to the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield corridor that will pave the way for increased commuter rail service in 2018. Connecticut Department of Transportation plans to move the fleet of diesel-hauled trains currently serving its Shore Line East route between New Haven and New London, Conn., to the new Springfield Line service. Part of CDOT’s fleet of M-8 electric multiple-unit (EMU) cars will be used to cover SLE schedules on the electrified Northeast Corridor. In an interview published in the Hartford Courant, CDOT rail administrator Carl Jackson predicted the new trains will build ridership and improve on-time performance on Shore Line East, which celebrated its 25th year of service in June. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy expanded Shore Line East service in 2013, and annual ridership now totals about 660,000.
—Passenger Train Journal