Passenger Rail Station Location and Design Analysis

The Housatonic Railroad Company is working to re-introduce passenger rail service between the Berkshires and New York City.   The Berkshire Regional Planning Commission conducted a comprehensive planning study to evaluate the most feasible locations for up to six passenger rail facilities, prepare recommendations for facility upgrades at downtown Pittsfield’s intermodal facility and to maximize opportunities for the directly affected communities and the entire Berkshires to benefit from station locations through increased economic, job and housing opportunities, as well as tax revenues. Four station locations were recommended, one each in Pittsfield, Lee, Great Barrington and Sheffield. Preliminary sketches were also developed along with station area plans for each of the four recommended locations. The study also includes the estimated economic benefits of the restored rail service, potential noise and vibration impacts and mitigation tools, and refined ridership estimates.