Friday, August 10, 2012

FRA sets scoping meetings for NEC FUTURE

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The Department of Transportation Friday released its schedule for public scoping meetings, to be overseen by the Federal Railroad Administration, that form part of the environmental review process for NEC FUTURE, involving upgrades to Amtrak's Northeast Corridor (NEC) between Washington, D.C. and Boston.

"The meetings are opportunities for the public to give their input on alternatives for future Northeast Corridor rail service, and to inform them about the NEC FUTURE program," DOT said.

"NEC FUTURE will develop a framework for passenger rail capacity and service improvements through 2040, including an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to assess alternatives for passenger rail improvements in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act. The Draft EIS is expected to be completed mid-2014 with a Final EIS and Record of Decision in 2015. Concurrent with the EIS, the NEC FUTURE program will develop a Service Development Plan (SDP) focused on passenger rail service and possible alternatives for the corridor. Together, the SDP and EIS will comprise the Passenger Rail Corridor Investment Plan for the NEC," DOT said.

Those unable to attend a meeting may submit comments to the project's website, The comment period concludes on Friday, Sept. 14, 2012.

All meetings are scheduled to be held from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., with a brief project overview scheduled for 5:30 p.m. The meeting schedule, which begins Monday, Aug. 13, includes:

Aug. 13: State Transportation Building, 10 Park Plaza, Boston;

Aug. 14: Shubert Theater, 247 College Street, New Haven;

Aug. 15: University of Baltimore, Thumel Conference Facilities, 11 W. Mount Royal Street, Baltimore, Md.;

Aug. 15: North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority One Newark Center, 17th Floor, Newark, N.J.;

Aug. 16: Farley Post Office/Moynihan Station 380 W. 33rd Street, Room 4500, New York;

Aug. 20: SEPTA Board Room Complex 1234 Market Street, Mezzanine Level, Philadelphia;

Aug. 20: Carvel State Office Building 820 N. French Street, Wilmington, Del.;

Aug. 21: Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments 777 N. Capitol St. NE, Suite 300, Washington, D.C.;

Aug. 22: Department of Administration One Capitol Hill, Providence, R.I.

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