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Monday, 07 October 2013 09:27

Amtrak, Michigan investing in state's rail lines

(AREA) -- Amtrak and Michigan plan to invest millions of dollars over the coming years to improve service on the state's three passenger train lines. Upgraded tracks between Kalamazoo and Dearborn will allow trains to travel faster, leading to shorter trips. More amenities are being ordered and officials hope that increased ridership will mean lower state subsidies for service. Michigan for years has underwritten the Blue Water line between Port Huron and Chicago, which includes a stop in East Lansing, and the Pere Marquette between Grand Rapids and Chicago. Changes mean the state also must pick up the tab for the Wolverine between Pontiac and Chicago. Michigan taxpayers will pay more than $25 million for the fiscal year that started last week to operate the lines.