Public Meeting – Lewiston/Auburn Passenger Rail Service Plan

Public Meeting
Wednesday, March 27, 2019
Lewiston Library
Callahan Hall
6:00pm – 8:00pm

The Lewiston/Auburn Passenger Rail Service Plan Committee is hosting a public meeting on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 to discuss Service Scenarios for a passenger rail service between the communities of Lewiston/Auburn and Portland to present information to and gather feedback from the public regarding various scenarios. Click Here for meeting announcement.

Building upon the results of the ridership propensity analysis, which was developed as Phase 1 of this initiative, the group has focused on rail alignments and service levels which would support a high-frequency, commuter type rail service between the two regions. Route and station options, as well as potential schedules will be discussed as well as capital and operating cost estimates.


In 2015, the 127th Maine Legislature, in PL 2015, c. 267, Pt. YY, approved a $500,000 fund allocation and directed the Department of Transportation (MaineDOT), in consultation with the cities of Lewiston and Auburn and Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority (NNEPRA), to conduct a study and complete a plan for the implementation of passenger rail service between the cities of Lewiston and Auburn and the Amtrak Downeaster service. The municipalities of Lewiston and Auburn have contributed $50,000 toward the project cost.

NNEPRA is serving as the Project Manager for the Lewiston/Auburn Passenger Rail Service Plan (Plan). Through a competitive procurement process, VHB in partnership with WSP has been selected as the Project Consultant Team.

Overseeing the project, a nine-member Project Committee was established, to represent the diverse views and regional perspectives included representatives from NNEPRA and MaineDOT, as well as representatives from the Cities of Lewiston and Auburn.

Members include:

  • Lincoln Jeffers, Lewiston Director of Economic Development
  • Richard Grandmaison, Lewiston
  • John Myrand, Lewiston (replaced Rep. Jared Golden)
  • Representative Bettyann Sheats, Auburn
  • Jonathan Labonte, Former Mayor of Auburn
  • Robert Stone, Former Auburn City Councilor
  • Mary Ann Hayes, MaineDOT
  • Patricia Quinn, NNEPRA


This project has been organized into two distinct evaluations: (1) transit propensity assessment (i.e., ridership estimation); and (2) corridor considerations and operating service evaluations.

The first analysis involved an assessment of potential ridership. A range of ridership estimates were developed by evaluating the demographics and travel patterns in the area, by considering the potential development opportunities of a rail connection and by examining similar rail corridors across the country.

The Project Committee met monthly and has been involved in evaluating the demand of passenger rail between L-A and Portland. Click here for a summary of findings and click here for the complete propensity analysis.

The second evaluation has included the development of Service Scenarios, an assessment of infrastructure needs and costs to support various service scenarios, and a potential plan for implementation, which will be presented for comment at the meeting on March 27, 2019.

Feedback and questions related to the project may be directed to: