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Agreement to bring passenger rail to Roanoke

Thursday - 1/9/2014, 4:06pm  ET

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- Gov. Bob McDonnell says passenger train service is heading to Roanoke for the first time in more than 30 years.

McDonnell on Thursday announced an agreement between the Department of Rail and Public Transportation and Norfolk Southern to improve rail related infrastructure between Lynchburg and Roanoke.

Officials say the improvements will allow passenger rail to once again serve the Roanoke region.

The agreement includes track additions and realignments, signal and communication upgrades and a platform and train servicing facility in downtown Roanoke.

Dedicated funding for Amtrak Virginia trains was included in McDonnell's 2013 transportation package to continue support for existing services and expanding passenger rail options.

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