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Amtrak on Dec. 29 plans to begin Vermonter service to the "Knowledge Corridor," operating along a rail line that runs parallel to Interstate 91 between New Haven, Conn., and the Massachusetts border with Vermont, the railroad announced Saturday.Restoration of service to the corridor has been a goal of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, according to an Amtrak press release. MassDOT and Patrick led the effort to improve the Pan Am Southern tracks and shorten trip times within Massachusetts, Amtrak officials said.The service — which will run on a federally upgraded track — will include stops in Greenfield and Northampton, Mass. In 2015, Vermonter service will add a stop in Holyoke, Mass., when station work is completed. The added stops due to the reroute will replace service provided to the Amherst station, which will end Dec. 28.The Vermonter operates daily between Washington and St. Albans, Vt., with service to Philadelphia, New York City, Hartford, Springfield, Mass., and Essex Junction, Vt. In fiscal-year 2014, ridership on the route increased 6.6 percent, Amtrak officials said.
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