There may be hope that the Amtrak station remains in Ettrick after all.
After the Federal Railroad Administration recently abandoned without explanation a study that recommended a future Amtrak station be located on the Boulevard in Colonial Heights, a representative of Virginians for Highspeed Rail notes that the Commonwealth Transportation Board has now approved upgrades to the Ettrick station.
Danny Plaugher, executive director of Virginians for Highspeed Rail, said the state’s Six-Year Transportation Improvement Plan that was approved by the CTB on June 19 includes $5.7 million to upgrade and modernize the Ettrick station. Also funded, Plaugher said, were $28.4 million to sustain Amtrak service to the Ettrick station over the next six years and $11.1 million to add a third Amtrak regional train from the Ettrick station to Norfolk.
“It shows a commitment by the commonwealth to invest and improve their preferred station, which is Ettrick,” Plaugher said in an email. “The Greater Petersburg/Ettrick station is slated for a lot more service in the future, including four more trains to Norfolk (one of which is funded in the six-year plan) and four more trains to Raleigh/Charlotte, N.C.”
A call to Matoaca District supervisor Steve Elswick for comment was not returned.