State

Quinn, Durbin tout high-speed rail construction

CHICAGO (AP) – The next phase of construction on a high-speed rail route between Chicago and St. Louis is to begin next month.

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin announced Tuesday that the $685 million project is scheduled to start April 5 and estimated to create more than 6,000 direct and indirect jobs.

With high-speed trains eventually able to travel up to 110 mph, the travel time between St. Louis and Chicago would be cut to less than four hours.

Illinois has been awarded $1.2 billion in federal money to expand passenger rail and the state has promised to kick in another $42 million.

Last year, Quinn and Durbin debuted the first upgrades to a 90-mile stretch of track from Alton to Lincoln.

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