That’s according to Amtrak. Government Affairs Director Derrick Jones told the meeting of the Western Illinois Amtrak Coalition this afternoon in Galesburg that they’re continuing a Department of Transportation-ordered study to investigate the line’s feasibility.
Jones says while there’s a lot of work to be done, it seems like such a line would work.
“We would like to have some sort of service up and running sooner rather than later and we have had much success around the nation with dedicated motor coach connections,” says Jones. “Where you would have over the road, sort of greyhound or charter style coaches that are designed to meet the arrivals and departures of the trains.”
Jones says, however, the study is being done in a sort-of stair-step approach — in that operating costs need to be figured out, followed by connecting Peoria to the Amtrak services in Normal.
Another phase would be connecting Decatur with Champaign and Normal and other routes already with Amtrak services, followed by a full corridor analysis.
Some field investigations will begin, Jones says, next month.