Peoria Council votes to approve planning funding for Amtrak proposal

Amtrack has stations in Marshall, Longview, and Mineola.
Amtrack has stations in Marshall, Longview, and Mineola.
Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 10:00 PM CST
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - Will Amtrak play in Peoria? City Council is hoping so as they vote to take another step toward bringing the option to the river city.

The only member to vote against the move Tuesday night was At-Large member John Kelly.

The vote was to approve the ability to pledge 20%, or $250,000 toward the planning. IDOT is expected to pay $250,000 as well, with $2.5 million from federal funding.

Right now, the closest Amtrak station is in Normal, providing passengers rides to big cities like St Louis and Chicago.

Council member Kelly is worried ridership just won’t be enough to keep it going.

“To me, I think the intentions are very, very good. But, it seems like a boondoggle to me of very massive proportions,” said Kelly.

The overall project is expected to cost more than $2.5 billion, but a recent survey with more than 31,000 responses showed strong, positive reaction from residents to the proposal.

With this vote of approval, the project can move forward to the planning stages.

Want to learn more? Click HERE for the feasibility study.