December 19, 2022 4:20pm
Local leaders discuss Amtrak’s future in Greater Louisville
A few weeks ago, GLI convened representatives from Amtrak, Louisville Metro Government, Mayor-Elect Greenberg’s transition team, Louisville Tourism, Kentuckiana Regional Planning & Development Agency (KIPDA), TARC, Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), and more to discuss the future of passenger rail service in Greater Louisville. Amtrak presented proposed routes and next steps for Louisville to apply for grant funding to conduct a feasibility study on the proposed routes, times, frequency of service, and costs to the city and state.
GLI has advocated for expansion of passenger rail since the federal government passed the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which allocated funding to the Federal Railroad Administration for expanded passenger rail service across the US. Adding an additional point of connectivity to the Greater Louisville region is a major benefit for tourism and talent attraction.
Louisville Metro Government has already completed the first step of the process to express interest in routes, now they will work with GLI and other community partners to complete the application for a grant to conduct the feasibility study. Grants will be awarded in summer of 2023 and the study will take approximately one year to complete before the local government will determine whether to move forward.
While routes are subject to change, there is substantial interest in a route that runs from Chicago to Indianapolis and ends in Louisville. Partners also advocated for extending service through Nashville to further connect Greater Louisville with its two largest peer cities.
According to Amtrak representatives, the service would have to offer time and costs savings to be effective and Amtrak strives to make all routes “driving time competitive”. Representatives from Indiana are also highly supportive of including Louisville in the route to further connect with the region.
GLI will continue coordinating with partners on this effort and updating investors as we know more.