Passenger rail advocates meet in Dubuque to discuss Chicago service

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DUBUQUE, Iowa (KCRG) -- A group gathered in Dubuque on Monday to discuss the future of passenger rail between Chicago and the Key City.

A little more than a dozen men meet at the Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque on Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, to discuss the future of passenger rail between the Key City and Chicago. (Allison Wong, KCRG-TV9)

People at the meeting included representatives from Amtrak, Loras College, Travel Dubuque and more.

The future of passenger rail is largely up to lawmakers in Illinois, according to Amtrak reps. Marc Magliari, a spokesman for Amtrak, said during the meeting that the Illinois Department of Transportation needs to conduct a study which would examine the cost, best service plan options, and more.

City of Dubuque officials have advocated for service between Chicago and Dubuque in the past.

One advocate believes it would be good for Dubuque in many ways.

"We're a tourism center," David Solberg said. "We draw a lot of students from Chicago. It would help retain citizenship, it would retain and attract students, it would bring people in to see the magnificent facilities that we offer here."

Those in attendance said they will form coalitions with groups in Illinois and urge state and city lawmakers to show support.