Governor Doyle: Governor Doyle, Senator Kohl Dedicate New Passenger Rail Station at General Mitchell International Airport

Ron Adams, Director, WisDOT Bureau of Rails and Harbors,
Marc Magliari, Amtrak Media Relations, 312-880-5390
Ethnie Groves, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2156

Rail Station Will Offer Transportation, Economic Links

MILWAUKEE – Governor Jim Doyle and U.S. Senator Herb Kohl
today joined federal, state, and local officials in dedicating a $6.8
million passenger rail facility at Milwaukee County’s General Mitchell
International Airport (GMIA). The station will serve rail passengers
connecting to the airport, along with rail-only passengers utilizing
Amtrak’s Hiawatha Service that provides seven daily round trips between
Chicago and Milwaukee. Milwaukee County and GMIA are providing a free
shuttle bus connection between the airport and rail station.

“Today, as we open this new passenger rail facility, we’re
also opening a new chapter in Wisconsin’s inter-connected transportation
system, and a doorway to new economic opportunities that will benefit the
entire state,” Governor Doyle said. “But we wouldn’t be here today without
a strong federal partnership, and I want to commend Senator Kohl’s hard work
and leadership in securing the federal earmark that funded this project.”

The approximately 1,600 square-foot heated station includes
restrooms and a seating area. Covered walkways lead from the drive-up area
to a 400-foot passenger-boarding platform. The station is located on the
western edge of the airport along existing Canadian Pacific Railway lines
and includes parking for 300 vehicles.

“Amtrak looks forward to building upon its growing Hiawatha
Service by introducing another rail-to-air connection,” said Barbara J.
Richardson, Amtrak Vice President, Sales and Marketing. “Our successful
experience in the East with the Baltimore Washington International Airport
(BWI) station demonstrates the great potential for the Milwaukee airport

BWI is in the top 20 of the more than 500 Amtrak
destinations, with more than a half-million passengers travelling annually
to and from the station in suburban Maryland. Along with the BWI and GMIA
stations, Amtrak has two other stations serving airports in the United
States: Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport in California and Newark Liberty
International Airport in New Jersey.

Along with offering the best on-time performance of any
Amtrak route at more than 90 percent, Amtrak’s Hiawatha Service continues to
serve more and more passengers – a record 470,186 in 2004. Each year, about
six million passengers pass through GMIA, which is serviced by 14 airlines
that offer direct or non-stop flights to 90 cities. There are 230 arrivals
and 230 departures out of GMIA every day.

“Midwest Airlines is pleased to work with the Wisconsin
Department of Transportation and Amtrak to help make this new service a
success,” said Timothy E. Hoeksema, Midwest Airlines chairman and chief
executive officer. “It will provide passengers traveling to and from
northern Illinois and Chicago faster and more convenient access to Mitchell
International Airport and Milwaukee’s hometown airline.”

Governor Doyle’s Grow Wisconsin” plan calls for strategic
investments in the state’s comprehensive transportation network to stimulate
economic growth.