Pinal mayors support Amtrak expansion proposal

A new proposal for expanded rail service, “Amtrak Connects US,” includes a line that would run through Phoenix and then south to Tucson with stops in Queen Creek and Coolidge along the way. /Amtrak

By Aaron Dorman | Pinal Central

Since 1996, the Amtrak passengers traveling to Phoenix have had to stop in the city of Maricopa, 25 miles to the south, and take shuttle transportation to the larger city.

However, that could change soon. Part of Amtrak’s recently unveiled expansion plans include adding rail service that would connect Tucson and Phoenix with three round trips a day and include several new stops in Pinal County.

Last week, 11 mayors within the metro region sent a letter to Arizona’s congressional delegation in support of the proposal.

“We enthusiastically support Amtrak’s vision to bring passenger rail service to our communities,” the letter reads. “Frequent and reliable rail service will expand economic opportunities and provide important regional connections between our cities and towns.”

The current Amtrak line that runs from Tucson to Los Angeles is part of the Sunset Limited route. In Casa Grande and Eloy, the rail line runs adjacent to Jimmie Kerr Boulevard and Frontier Street.

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