This diagram shows the many possible paths, or routes, that future trains could take between Washington, D.C. and Boston. It also shows connections that could potentially be provided to locations on other rail corridors.
The large circles represent the four “Primary Markets” along the NEC: Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. These four metropolitan areas generate most of the intercity and commuter rail ridership on the NEC today, and are projected to continue to be dominant drivers of ridership demand through 2040. For this reason, all of the alternatives developed include Philadelphia and New York City on the “main spine” route between Washington, D.C. and Boston.
The smaller black circles show intermediate markets that are on the existing spine or could potentially be included in a future “main spine.” Additional smaller markets, including some existing stops, potential stops on a future spine, and smaller markets on connecting corridors are not represented on this graphic.
The thick blue lines represent potential links between markets. The Initial Alternatives include each of these links in at least one alternative.