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Amtrak hopes to reduce I-25 traffic by creating a passenger rail along the Front Range

The proposed route would extend from Cheyenne, Wy to Pueblo, CO
Published: Apr. 13, 2021 at 6:49 AM MDT
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PUEBLO, Colo. (KKTV) - Amtrak and leaders from the Front Range Commision held the first meeting discussing a possible railway system that would extend from Cheyenne, Wyoming to Pueblo, Colorado Monday morning.

Community leaders say this rail system would greatly help the local enonomy across the Front Range and would reduce traffic along I-25. Jill Gabler, a member of Colorado Springs Council Member and the Front Range Commissioner, says 85% of the state’s population growth is happening along the Front Range and members from the commision agree having this Amtrak railway would be a great option for residents.

During the meeting Dale Steenbergen, the President/CEO of the Greater Cheyenne Chamber said “with the current growth and travel on I-25 between Cheyenne and Denver we would need 16 lanes down the North part of the front range, so this is just so important for a future”.

11 News spoke to several people from Pueblo who were excited about the possibilty of the passenger rail coming to the area and would use the service. Porfi Arrieta, a long time Pueblo resident, has driven up the I-25 corridor many times and says this passenger rail would be a great option that would ease some of the stress of driving up the Front Range.

“Timewise I think it would be a nice little trip, like if it has those sporadic stops, but it would be a nice drive to get off the highway and let someone else do the driving. I think it’s a terrific idea,” said Arrieta.

Pueblo County says the Amtrak station would be located at the Union Depot off of B Street. The County created a survey in 2016 to determine where the best place for the station. Two other locations were included as possible places, but the public decided Union Depot was the best option.

According to Amtrak the his project is stil in the begining phase and there is not a specific timeline or cost of the project in mind just yet. This all depends on how many passenger rails are needed. Although, the company does have several rail systems across the US and hopes to have this project and others built by 2035.

Sal Pace, the Front Range Commission Vice Chair says the project would be funded through grants, and taxpayer money and the issue would possibly be on the ballot in 2023 or 2025.

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