Commute time is one of the top considerations that people look at when they decide where to relocate jobs, yet the Hartford Courant correctly notes that ours is “the most heavily congested corridor in the country.” For years I have been delivering the message to the Capitol that transportation policy should make Fairfield County a gateway to New England, not an economic cul-de-sac, and I have gotten results.
After winning the long fight to keep our Norwalk to Danbury rail line open, I have replaced an unachievable Super 7 highway plan with road widening throughout our corridor that has significantly relieved congestion, and I repealed the statute that had prevented us from utilizing the Super 7 land for greenway activities, such as the Norwalk River Trail pedestrian and bike project.
Despite resistance, I have secured the funding for upgrading the Danbury rail line’s signal system so we can increase capacity and train speed. I assisted in bringing 300 new rail cars to the main line, and building a new rail maintenance yard.
Train stations in our area are receiving much needed upgrades and refurbishments and more parking spaces have been created. Fortunately for the already overburdened taxpayer, I successfully opposed the re-introduction of tolls and we secured private investments to completely upgrade all of our old highway rest stops. I also made sure that our Public Transportation Commission had representation from Fairfield County.
This is the era of mass transit and as a leading spokesperson and decision maker on the Transportation Committee I hope to build on our successes in order to modernize our roads and rail through initiatives like renovating Stamford’s train station, adding entrance/exit lanes on I-95, improving our branch lines, and in the long term, studying high speed and light rail around transit-oriented development.