Metro-North taps advocate for Waterbury line

Metro-North railroad car. (WTNH)
Metro-North railroad car. (WTNH)

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Metro-North Railroad has appointed an advocate charged with improving service on Connecticut’s Waterbury line that commuters have criticized as substandard.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy praised Metro North on Thursday for its appointment of Mike Donnarumma as district superintendent on the New Haven Line. Officials say he’ll be responsible for paying particular attention to the Waterbury branch line.

Malloy said commuter complaints are justified. Many riders are angry at the frequency of buses used to replace out-of-service trains, poor weekend scheduling and cleanliness of rail cars. The governor says the state of the rail line is unacceptable.

Major improvements to the line, including a new signal system, have begun. Commuter trips on the Waterbury line have more than doubled, from 190,000 a year 10 years ago to about 400,000 now.

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