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CT receives $2 billion for rail infrastructure improvements

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Connecticut’s rail passengers can expect to see shorter travel times to and from New York as a result of $2 billion in federal funds.

That’s according to U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, who on Monday joined several federal, state and local officials at a press conference by the Devon rail bridge in Milford.

“Within the next 10 years with this investment, we will be able to move people from Bridgeport to New York City 20 minutes faster,” Murphy said.

The faster travel times aren’t a result of getting faster trains but upgrading and replacing several aging rail bridges in the state, according to officials. The money is coming from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. But officials say it’s not just going to result in faster trains; it will also bring in well-paying union jobs and further entice companies to set up business within the state.

The Devon Bridge will get interim repairs but will eventually be replaced, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal said.

“They are both necessary because this bridge is 118 years old, and it’s outlived its safe and useful life and so have 24 other bridges and projects in Connecticut, every one of the 25 projects funded by this measure are 100 years old or more,” Blumenthal said.

It will cost $119 million to repair the Devon Bridge and another $245 million to replace it, according to Gov. Ned Lamont’s office.

Murphy said the projects will attract good-paying jobs.

“It just means a lot of jobs … you’re talking about tens of thousands of good-paying union jobs with decent wages and benefits and pensions that are going to come to Connecticut in order to get this work done,” Murphy said.

Other bridges in the state will be replaced as well, such as ones near Saugatuck, Old Saybrook and Old Lyme, ,according to Garrett T. Eucalitto, Connecticut Department of Transportation Commissioner. Those projects will get most of the funding — $826 million.

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