Mayor Collins announces creation of Cheyenne Passenger Rail Commission
Published on December 11, 2023
A new commission will help provide guidance and oversight for establishing passenger rail service in Cheyenne and serve as a local contact point for regional efforts.
Mayor Patrick Collins has created the Cheyenne Passenger Rail Commission, naming 10 members to the new board. The commission’s first meeting is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 15, at 10 a.m.
The commission will be tasked with promoting the return of passenger rail to Cheyenne, including working directly with Colorado’s Front Range Passenger Rail District and federal representatives, serving as a decision-making body for planning efforts, and pledging support for a Service Development Plan for the extension of passenger rail service to Wyoming.
“Bringing passenger rail back to Cheyenne would provide enormous benefits to our community,” Mayor Patrick Collins said. “Train service will make it easier to get up and down the Front Range and give us a major economic boost.”
Although Cheyenne has a rich railroad history, the city hasn’t had scheduled passenger rail service since 1997. However, momentum has grown significantly in recent years to establish passenger rail service along the Front Range Urban Corridor between Cheyenne and Pueblo, Colo.
In 2021, the state of Colorado established the Front Range Passenger Rail District to oversee the development of passenger rail along the I-25 corridor between Wyoming and New Mexico. Wyoming already has an ex-officio representative on that board.
Also in 2021, Amtrak announced a historic expansion plan that includes a Front Range regional service from Cheyenne to Pueblo, with potential stops in Fort Collins, Loveland, Longmont, Boulder, Denver, Littleton, Castle Rock, the USAF Academy, and Colorado Springs.
Finally, the 2021 federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provided for billions of dollars in passenger rail development funding.
The work of the Cheyenne Passenger Rail Commission will tie into those efforts.
“We have a historic opportunity to see passenger rail return to Cheyenne,” said Jeff Noffsinger, the director of the Cheyenne Metropolitan Planning Organization. “This is an exciting time for our community and we’re going to work hard to see this project come to fruition.”
Members of the commission include:
- Jeff Noffsinger, Cheyenne MPO Director
- Charles Bloom, Cheyenne Planning and Development Department Director
- Renee Smith, City of Cheyenne Grants Manager
- Dan Kline, WYDOT Systems Planning and Railroads
- Dale Steenbergen, Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce
- Ken Esquibel, Cheyenne City Councilmember
- Gunnar Malm, Laramie County Commissioner
- Rep. Landon Brown, Wyoming House of Representatives
- Justin Arnold, Laramie County Planning and Development Director
- Steve Borin, Cheyenne citizen representative
Like all City boards and commissions, Cheyenne Passenger Rail Commission meetings are open to the public. To learn more about the board and for meeting agendas, visit www.cheyennecity.org/passengerrail.