You can have a voice in the future of Illinois' rail systems.  There are nearly 10,000 miles of tracks that serve both passenger and freight needs.  The Illinois Department of Transportation is holding a public hearing next Thursday, August 16 from 4-7pm at the Alton Holiday Inn to discuss the future of the state's rail system.

This is one in a series of meetings around the state that will help agency officials determine concerns and areas of potential improvement.  A meeting on the final location of a new train station in Alton will be held at some point in the future.  Agency spokesman Guy Tridgell says this meeting will cover different ground.  

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At the coming meeting, alternatives will be discussed for accomodating the higher speed trains, including a full build-out, which includes adding a second track.  The current Chicago to St. Louis corridor operates on a single track that is shared by both traditional freight and Amtrak passenger rail service.

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