Representative Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA) issued the following statement on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s announcement of a $500,000 Corridor Identification and Development Program grant for a rail corridor connecting Reading to Philadelphia:
“The positive impact of restoring the historic Reading rail line to our community cannot be overstated,” said Rep. Houlahan. “For years, I’ve heard from constituents and businesses about what passenger rail would mean to them and our local economy. I successfully requested $750,000 in Community Project Funding back in 2021 to build the necessary foundation for this historic announcement that will advance this vital infrastructure project. This project has had broad support from the Commissioners of Chester and Berks Counties, the mayors of Reading and Phoenixville, multiple governors from our Commonwealth, and the Biden Administration. Our collaboration demonstrates the strength of the Reading rail line.”
Earlier this year, Houlahan wrote a letter of support alongside Representatives Madeleine Dean (D-PA) and Dan Meuser (R-PA) to DOT Administrator Bose, requesting consideration of the Schulkill River Passenger Rail Authority’s (SPRA) application to the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Corridor Identification and Development Program. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), which Houlahan voted for, authorized the Secretary of Transportation to establish the Corridor Identification and Development Program to develop passenger rail corridors across the country.
The Reading rail line would run on an existing rail alignment that has not had passenger trains running since 1983. It will also have new intermediate stops in Pottstown, Phoenixville and potentially Norristown, PA with four to eight daily roundtrips connecting southeastern Pennsylvanians with Philadelphia and New York, NY, from Reading.