Despite the rainy weather, dozens of people turned out for the event from labor, transit, environment, and government organizations to celebrate the day that was over a decade in the making.
The press conference featured a big group of speakers including Governor Dannel Malloy, Congressman John Larson, State Senator Terry Gerratana, Connecticut Department of Transportation Commissioner Jim Redeker, representatives from the Federal Highway and Federal Transit Administrations, Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, Oz Griebel of MetroHartford Alliance, Mary Glassman of the Capitol Region Council of Governments, and Ed Reilly of the Hartford Building Trades Council.
After all of the speeches, the various elected officials donned hard hats and picked up shovels and officially broke ground on the project.
The event was held in Hartford at the site of what will be the new Parkville station along CTfastrak. The Parkville station will be one of the 11 stations along the 9.4 mile bus rapid transit line.
We released the following statement after the ceremony:
“Today is a great day for the future of Connecticut’s transportation infrastructure. Today signals the start of a project that will give offer residents a 21st century rapid transit option, the first of its kind in Connecticut, to take them from New Britain to Hartford and connect them to other parts of the state. It marks the start of an influx of jobs for our construction workers, engineers, and bus drivers, which will help to revive our struggling economy. It signals that there is an end in sight for those who spend hours sitting in traffic on I-84. We have been waiting for over a decade to break ground on this project, and thank Governor Malloy and Commissioner Redeker for leading us to this day.”
Posted by Rebecca Kaplan, director of communications for CFE/Save the Sound