Should the high-speed rail proposal be extended to Pittsfield?

Extending the proposed east-west connector to include Berkshire County isn't a done deal at this point

PITTSFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Berkshire County legislators have supported Senator Eric Lesser’s legislation to fund a feasibility and impact study of high speed rail service that would connect Boston to Springfield.

However, the Berkshire County delegation favors extending the boundaries from Boston to Pittsfield.

22News found strong support from the business community for high speed rail service extending to this city of sixty thousand.

Jonathan Butler, President of CEO 1Berkshire, told 22News, “Anything that creates a more direct link with Boston and the metro area in the eastern part of the state would be significant. It would provide a lot of connectivity for our business community.”

22News found that Pittsfield has an inter-modal transportation complex, similar to Springfield’s Union Station for buses and trains.

The concept of high speed service from Boston to Pittsfield appeals to one young traveler.

“High speed rail from here to Boston would seem really nice. It’s kind of difficult to get anywhere around here. But with that we’d be able to get to a major city,” said Ian Douglas of Pittsfield.

The state legislature approved funding for Senator Lesser’s high speed rail study one year ago, only to have it vetoed by Governor Baker.

Extending the proposed east-west connector to include Berkshire County isn’t a done deal at this point.

East-West rail expansion could give residents access to high-paying jobs in Boston