Rockford could see Amtrak by 2011

Efforts to bring passenger rail service back to the stateline are moving right on track. political leaders from all over our area... are rallying together to bring Amtrak here by 2011.

It's the start of a grass roots campaign called "Northwest Blackhawk Express". Dozens of state and local leaders have formed a coalition fighting for community support to bring Amtrak service to the stateline. If money from the state's capitol plan comes here, the route would travel from Dubuque to Chicago and would stop in Rockford ,Freeport, and Belvidere. Supporters say we're the closest we've ever been to bringing passenger rail service to Rockford. They say it's up to the community to show support.

"This isn't a technical part of the process but it is a formal part of the process" said Chamber of Commerce President, Einar Forsman.." The elected officials respond to voters and so we have to raise our voice to a higher level and put our voices together to let them know this is important" he said at the rally

There are already plans to revitalize rail yards on South Main street for a modern train station and could start bringing trains through by fall of 2011. Without community support, more than 150 million dollars in capitol plan money will not come to our community.

Please visit our homepage for a link to a petition in support of bringing Amtrak to the stateline.