BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — The Burlington City Council has approved a number of agreements needed to move forward with a plan to bring passenger rail service to the city.

The resolutions advance several agreements and licenses between the city, Vermont Rail System, Vermont Agency of Transportation, ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain and the Lake Champlain Transportation Company, the Burlington Free Press reported. The City Council passed them unanimously this week.

The newly aligned track, which is now closer to the Union Station platform, will allow the city’s bike path to run west of the railroad and to prepare for the arrival of Amtrak passenger trains, the newspaper reported.

“For decades many of you know that the city has identified these two goals of reintroducing passenger rail and relocating the bike path on the western side of the tracks, as priorities over many years and many planning documents,” Chapin Spencer, director of the Burlington Department of Public Works, told the council at its meeting.

The resolutions passed include giving the mayor and public works director authority to execute an agreement among the city, the Vermont Rail System and the state transportation agency to relocate and redevelop the bike path and bring service to the city.

The Ethan Allen Express train is slated to arrive by the end of the year or the beginning of next year, with the passenger line heading north from Rutland to Burlington, with stops in Middlebury and Vergennes, the newspaper reported.

(Copyright (c) 2020 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Join our Newsletter for the latest news right to your inbox