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Passengers on Amtrak’s Hiawatha line who need additional round-trip routes between Milwaukee and Chicago could get their wish.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation told the Milwaukee Business Journal that is preparing a study about increasing the daily round trips from seven to 10. Reporter Sean Ryan writes that ridership on Amtrak in the corridor remains strong at 804,861 for 2014, an 8.5 percent increase over 2013.

Jen Adamski-Torres rides Amtrak to work almost every day, and she said an additional morning route that gets her into Milwaukee prior to 7:35 a.m. would be great. She’d also like more afternoon choices.

“Riders I spoke with – including myself – would like a earlier arrival into Milwaukee in the morning, like 7:35,” she said. “The afternoon could benefit as well. Right now, we only have a 3 or 5:45 p.m. to choose from, so something in the middle of that would be ideal.”

The Hiawatha line stops in Glenview, IL, and Sturtevant on its way to and fro from Milwaukee to Chicago.

If the study is ready this summer and made public, the state will hold public hearings late this summer so the federal government can give its okay this fall. Should that approval come through, the state can apply for the necessary grants to help fund the new runs, the story continues.

MBJ is also reporting that a second daily run for the Empire line between Chicago and the Twin Cities could also be part of the state’s plan to maintain and improve existing railroad corridors across Wisconsin. The Empire line stops in Milwaukee as well as La Crosse.


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