TDX Reaffirms Support for Entire Route - TransDominion Express


TDX Reaffirms Support for Entire Route

With several years of work supporting us, 2005 marks the most exciting advances for the TDX yet! Between plans for the TDX Demo and passage of the Rail Enhancement Fund, we are inundated with preparations!

Even with all the good news to be reported, there remains a need to set the record straight. It has never wavered from its original mission. TransDominion Express, Inc. reaffirms its original goal to establish modern passenger rail to connect southwest Virginia to both Richmond and Washington, D.C., following the originally established route with Lynchburg as the hub from which a leg to Richmond and another to Washington, D.C. will extend.

Anything published or spoken to the contrary is simply disinformation. The Committee, working closely with the administration, has held steadfast to this commitment to the communities previously slated for inclusion. Farmville, alone, due to Norfolk Southern’s decision to move existing track elsewhere, will require modified and rerouted service.

A recent proposal to replace the northern Virginia TDX connection with Virginia Railway Express (VRE) is neither a part of the Commonwealth’s current plan, nor entirely in variance with the overall plan for a unified passenger rail system. Although there have been precursory discussions of coordination between TDX and VRE, this is better described as a facet of long range planning for future overlapping or supplementary services.

From our perspective, a VRE replacement would do nothing to connect anyone south or west of Charlottesville to northern Virginia, or to D.C., so it is not a viable response to our goal of uniting the Commonwealth by rail.

The TDX committee is working to qualify the proposed Demo line for the newly established Rail Enhancement Fund. The demonstration route serving the Bristol to Richmond segment is in the planning stages. This incremental start has encouraged serious advances for passenger rail not only in Virginia, but in neighboring Tennessee, as well!

Having been a primary proponent for rail funding over the past several years, Barbara Hartley, liaison for the TDX, was an invited guest at the June 17 signing of the Rail Enhancement Fund bill, in Norfolk. Working with Senator William Wampler (Bristol) and VDRPT Director, Karen Rae, the TDX was named in Virginia’s budget language, as a potential recipient of some of those funds.

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