January 24, 2013 Statement from Amtrak President and CEO Joe Boardman on Governor McDonnell’s Plan to Return Passenger Rail to Roanoke

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WASHINGTON – Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell announced today a plan to return passenger rail service to Roanoke. The statement below is from Amtrak President and CEO Joe Boardman:

“Amtrak applauds Governor McDonnell for continuing to offer a true vision and tangible support of intercity passenger rail as a relief to the growing problems of highway congestion. Passenger rail is a vital alternative in Virginia’s overall transportation solution and will be a contributor to Virginia’s future economic success.

“Today’s announcement marks the beginning of the return of intercity passenger rail to Roanoke as Amtrak Virginia. It would be the fourth expansion of intercity passenger rail in the Commonwealth since 2009 following new or additional service to Lynchburg, Richmond and Norfolk. These services are made possible through a partnership between Virginia’s Department of Rail and Public Transportation, Amtrak and the host railroads along the routes.”

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Amtrak is America’s Railroad®, the nation’s intercity passenger rail service and its high-speed rail operator. Amtrak and its state and commuter partners move people, the economy and the nation forward. Formally known as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, Amtrak is governed by a nine member board of directors appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Anthony R. Coscia is board chairman and Jeffrey R. Moreland is vice chairman. In FY 2014, nearly 31 million passengers traveled on Amtrak on more than 300 daily trains – at speeds up to 150 mph (241 kph) – that connect 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian Provinces. Enjoy the journey® at Amtrak.com or call 800-USA-RAIL for schedules, fares and more information. Like us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter (@Amtrak) and check out our blog at blog.amtrak.com.