By Molly McKay, of Mystic, and transportation chairwoman of the Connecticut Sierra Club. She is also a member of The Courant’s Place Board of Contributors.
The proposed 9.4-mile New Britain-to-Hartford busway — a paved corridor exclusively for buses that would connect only four communities: New Britain, Newington, West Hartford and Hartford — could cause the permanent loss of rail rights-of-way and deal a drastic blow to the state's passenger and freight rail service.
The busway is estimated to cost $570 million. And that’s just the estimate.
This costly project will harm passenger and freight rail systems in Connecticut and throughout New England. It would pave over an existing rail right-of-way between Newington and New Britain. That right-of-way is part of the former Highland Line, which provided passenger service from Waterbury to Hartford.