A plan to connect Fall River, New Bedford, and Taunton with Boston by commuter rail service would create between 3,500 and 3,800 new jobs by 2030, with two-thirds of those jobs in the region, according to a plan issued today by the Patrick administration.
Construction of the project itself would also generate 7,000 to 8,000 jobs, more than $1 billion in spending, and about $315 million in household income, according to the South Coast Economic Development and Land Use Corridor Plan.
Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray said in a statement that the report confirms that the project "will be a catalyst for economic and community development in the region. It will give thousands of people access to new job opportunities and a better connection to a growing area with more affordable housing prices."
Governor Deval Patrick, joined by Congressmen Barney Frank and James McGovern, released the plan at a news conference today at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, the governor's office said.
Three routes are being considered for the new service, but all the options connect the three Southeastern Massachusetts communities with Boston.
The report notes, however, that during the current tough economic times governments "face financial uncertainties that pose challenges to immediately advancing parts of the Corridor Plan."
Colin Durrant, a spokesman for the Executive Office of Transportation, said a funding plan is due out at the beginning of the year and will probably call for funding the project using several different sources, including state and federal stimulus funds.
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