Commuter rail service between New Haven and Springfield will launch in June, one month later than originally planned, the state Department of Transportation announced this week.
CTrail Hartford Line trains begin rolling Saturday, June 16, with free service throughout the weekend.
Full weekday service begins Monday, June 18 with trains running about every 45 minutes during morning and evening peak periods.
The 62-mile Hartford Line will run a total of 17 weekday trains daily between New Haven and Connecticut's capital, and 12 trips between Hartford and Springfield.
Riders can then connect through Metro North or Amtrak to New York City, Boston, and Vermont.
"This expanded service will transform travel options in the corridor between New Haven and Springfield, Massachusetts, and it will be a catalyst for economic development, and business and recreational travel," state Transportation Commissioner James Redeker said.
In an October 2017 CBIA survey, two-thirds of the I-91 corridor's business leaders reported traffic congestion and poor and deteriorating infrastructure were the most pressing transportation issues facing the region.
Trains can travel up to 110 mph, enabling commuters to go from New Haven to Springfield in 81 minutes, the DOT said.
The ride from New Haven to Hartford will take about 45 minutes with stops in Meriden, Wallingford, and Berlin.
Connecticut has spent about $650 million in state and federal funds on the new line and new stations in Berlin, Meriden, and Wallingford.
The overall project cost, including laying new tracks, is $1.2 billion.
Eighty percent of the line's projected $20 million annual operating budget will be covered for three years by the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program, which also subsidizes the CTfastrak bus rapid-transit service.
"Even before commencement of the service, the state's investment has already attracted new commercial and residential development, and has become the latest engine driving Connecticut's economy," Redeker said.