CTrail Hartford Line, also known as New Haven-Hartford-Springfield (NHHS) Rail project, is a proposed passenger rail service between New Haven, Connecticut, and Springfield, Massachusetts, in New England, US.

Construction on the project began in 2015 and services are expected to commence in May 2018.

The CTrail Hartford Line service will be operated and managed by a joint venture of TransitAmerica Services and Alternate Concepts for a period of five years, under a $45m contract with the Connecticut Department of Transportation.

The 100km-long rail line is expected to facilitate faster, frequent and bi-directional commuter transportation between New Haven, Hartford and Springfield.

The project is a joint effort between the states of Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont, the Federal Railroad Administration, and Amtrak. It is expected to create up to 13,000 new jobs.

Hartford Line development details

Hartford Line is aimed to provide a reliable regional passenger rail service using the existing Amtrak New Haven-Springfield Line and Hartford Line trains.

The new line will create connections to Amtrak-operated Acela high-speed rail and Metro-North train service operating on the New Haven Line to New York, and Shore Line East service on the Northeast Corridor to New London and Boston.

It will also facilitate direct or connecting services from stations along the Hartford Line route to Vermont.

Additionally, the service will allow passengers to connect with an express bus line that runs from Hartford to Bradley International Airport.

Design and construction

The environmental assessment of the Hartford Line project was completed in January 2012, while the design was finalised in October 2014.

The project involves the construction of a second track parallel to the single-track sections of the New Haven-Springfield Line between New Haven and Windsor. It also includes modernisation of 180 bridges and culverts to incorporate double tracking.

Up to 38 at‐grade crossings along the New Haven-Springfield rail corridor will be upgraded to improve safety.

The programme also covers upgrade of the track and signalling systems, improvement of existing stations and construction of new stations.

Hartford Line route and station details

The Hartford Line passenger service currently includes New Haven Union Station, New Haven State Street Station, Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin, Hartford Union Station, Windsor, Windsor Locks and Springfield stations.

“The service will reduce the travel time between Springfield and New Haven by 81 minutes.”

The new railway stations at North Haven, Newington, West Hartford, and Enfield are expected to be available for service by 2022.

The stations will feature overhead pedestrian bridges, parking lots, automatic snowmelt systems, high-level platforms, passenger information display systems, loop bicycle racks, ticket vending machines, and electronic vehicle charging stations.

Rolling stock details

The Hartford Line commuter rail corridor will initially use 17 high-speed roundtrip trains between New Haven and Hartford on weekdays, of which 12 will continue to Springfield. A total of 13 roundtrips will be operated between New Haven and Hartford on weekends, of which nine services extend to Springfield.

The trains will travel with 45-minute headway in peak hours and 90-minute headway during the off-peak period. The service will reduce the travel time between Springfield and New Haven by 81 minutes.

The railway line will utilise a total of 25 roundtrip trains with 30-minute peak and 60-minute off-peak service when fully operational by 2030.

The trains will run at speeds ranging between 128km/h and 177km/h.


The estimated cost of the Hartford Line passenger rail project is $1.17bn. The project has received $769.1m from the state and federal authorities.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) provided $190.9m to the State of Connecticut to support the construction of track and new rail stations, as well as for track improvements.

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) contributed $13.9m for study and conceptual designs of new rail stations of the Hartford Line commuter service.

Funding of $564.3m was provided by the State of Connecticut for the project design and construction.

Hartford Line rail project benefits

The Hartford Line rail project is anticipated to support social and economic development in the states of Connecticut and Massachusetts. It is expected to increase the annual distance travelled by passengers from 52 million miles to 133 million miles and add 1.26 million new trips a year by 2030.

The programme will support environmental sustainability by saving more than 3.5 million gallons of fuel a year.