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The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) has scheduled six hearings in March to solicit public comments on a recently released Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for a proposed high-speed rail service between New York City and Niagara Falls, N.Y.The hearings will be held March 4 through March 12, NYSDOT officials said in a press release.The DEIS advances five alternatives for further study on the Empire Corridor, including a base alternative that would continue existing Amtrak service with some operational and service improvements; and four "build" alternatives that would continue existing service on existing tracks while adding a new, segregated high-speed right-of-way reserved exclusively for passenger trains and paralleling the existing alignment.
"This service will give the state a strategic advantage in creating jobs, protecting our environment, and stimulating economic growth," NYSDOT officials said in a prepared statement. "Travelers and businesses will be attracted by fast, frequent, reliable, and comfortable passenger rail service. Adding to the appeal are anticipated improvements in on-time performance and reliability resulting from investments in this 463-mile rail corridor between New York City and Niagara Falls."