State Department of Transportation Commissioner James P. Redeker, left, alongside Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman, holds a news conference in Wallingford in July about the Hartford commuter rail line. The state DOT released proposed fares for the line Monday. (Monica Jorge / Hartford Courant)
The state Department of Transportation Monday announced proposed fares for the Hartford Line commuter rail that will begin service in May.
A one-way trip between Hartford and New Haven will run $8. A trip along the entire length of the rail line — Springfield to New Haven — will cost $12.75.
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By comparison, an Amtrak train ticket between Hartford and New Haven started at $16 Monday while the cheapest fare between Springfield and New Haven was $24.
According to a news release from the DOT, there will be discounts for commuters including weekly and monthly passes and 10-trip tickets.
When service begins there will be 17 round-trip trains between New Haven and Hartford on weekdays. A dozen of those trains will continue to Springfield. Trains will arrive at stations in New Haven, Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin and Hartford every 45 minutes during peak hours and every 60 to 90 minutes during off-peak periods.
The trains will reach speeds of up to 110 mph for an average trip between Springfield and New Haven of 81 minutes, eight minutes faster than Amtrak. The service will run between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m.
Construction of the new rail line has been ongoing for several years and officials hope its completion will bring a boost to economic development around the new train stations.
“We are committed to modernizing Connecticut’s transportation infrastructure, which had been neglected for far too long,” Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said in a written statement. “When the CTrail Hartford Line launches, it will be a game-changer for the state. It will position Connecticut as a more attractive place for new business investment, provide transit options for our current residents and will attract new residents who don’t want to be automobile dependent.”
The DOT is accepting comments on the new fares through Nov. 27 by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or mail and has also scheduled three public comment forums: at 5 p.m. Nov. 13 at the New Haven Hall of Records; 4 p.m. Nov. 14 at Capital Community College in Hartford; and 5:30 p.m. Nov. 15 at the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission in Springfield.
The state and federal governments have put $642 million into the Hartford Line so far. That’s enough for service to start in May serving New Haven, Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin, Hartford, Windsor, Windsor Locks and Springfield.
Eventually, the daily schedule will expand to 25 round trips, and stations in Enfield, North Haven, West Hartford and Newington will be added.
A joint venture of TransitAmerica Services and Alternate Concepts — which together serve about 57 million riders and provide 318,000 trips annually across the United States — was chosen over Amtrak and three other bidders to operate the new rail line.
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