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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Amtrak to begin serving renovated Castleton, Vt., depot

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As the result of growing and anticipated demand for passenger rail service to Castleton State College and Lake Bomoseen, Amtrak and the Vermont Agency of Transportation said that state-supported Ethan Allen Express trains will make twice daily stops at the recently renovated Castleton, Vt., station beginning January 2, 2010. The southbound Ethan Allen Express, train #292 scheduled to arrive Saturday at 11:02 a.m., will be the first train to officially stop at the station.

The historically refurbished Castleton Depot, originally built in 1850, is replacing the small outdoor Fair Haven stop, which will continue to accept passengers through January 9, 2010.

"The new station is beautifully remodeled and will offer Amtrak passengers first-class accommodations," said Vermont Agency of Transportation Secretary David Dill. "Castleton is a perfect location for a train stop as the college is right down the street and picturesque Lake Bomoseen is just a stone's throw from the village."

The Castleton Depot is privately owned by Mary Ann and Val Jakubowski whose family purchased the property from the Delaware and Hudson Railroad in 1966 and began renovations in 2005. The rehabilitated station offers passengers an indoor waiting room, complementary parking and meets accessibility requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

In addition, it provides convenient access to the downtown area and will be open one hour prior to scheduled arrivals and departures of Ethan Allen Express trains that operate between Rutland, Vt., and New York, N.Y., via Albany, N.Y. The Green Mountain Country Depot deli, bakery and coffee shop also is located in the building. Amtrak and the Vermont Agency of Transportation will be working to enhance station parking capacity and upgrade the existing platforms at the renovated facility.

"Amtrak is delighted to have a new station stop in Castleton that provides area residents direct access to rail transportation and visitors a connection to area attractions, " said Michael DeCataldo, Amtrak General Superintendent Northeast Division.

The Depot will be unstaffed. However passengers have several different options for making reservations and purchasing tickets.

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