Ascension Parish gets aboard plan for passenger railway

ASCENSION PARISH, LA (WAFB) - By a unanimous vote, Ascension Parish got up to speed with the Intrastate Rail Compact Thursday night.

The initiative is made up of board members from Baton Rouge, New Orleans and now Ascension Parish.

Beginning in March, this group will analyze results from current cost feasibility studies aimed at getting a passenger rail system up and running between the Capitol and Crescent cities and points in between.

"This is going to be monumental for their children and their children's children and I truly believe we can do this, we just have to set our mind to it and I'm determined to be a part of it," said Councilwoman Teri Casso.

The compact will also determine what federal funds may be available for what will be needed improvements to existing tracks and infrastructure.

"There's a lot of enthusiasm around the project how long will it take well these studies that will come out are really going to lay out that picture," said Rachel DiResto of the Center for Planning Excellence.

When and if this project truly rolls ahead remains to be seen but for Casso, who is a member of Ascension Parish's compact board, it will be worth the wait.

"I would suspect that there certainly will be a charge to ride the train but there was when my grandmother went so I'm just terribly excited," said Casso.

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