Plan to Study Front Range Passenger Rail Heads to the House

· Feb. 24, 2017, 8:45 am

A proposal to study whether passenger rail is viable along the Front Range has cleared the State Senate. It now heads to the House.

Senate Bill 153 would consider Front Range rail and extending the existing Amtrak Southwest Chief line in southern Colorado. Supporters say it would help rural communities and connect urban parts of the state to outlying areas.

It's also part of a larger discussion happening this legislative session on ways to ease traffic congestion along the I-25 corridor and plan for population increases.

The measure passed easily, but many worry whether it would be financially feasible in the long run, depending on how much money the state would have to contribute.

If passed, the existing Southwest Chief commission would not sunset this summer as originally scheduled and would expand its mission to include the exploration of passenger rail along Colorado's Front Range.

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