A $10.4 billion train line connecting the Virgin Atlantic rail network to Branson is getting $10 million from the federal government, the state’s governor and local officials, as part of a plan to revitalize an old rail line.
The Virgin Atlantic line opened in the early 1990s, and its current owners, the Branson, Va.-based company, announced the line’s construction was scheduled to start in 2019.
The company had estimated it would cost $8.5 billion to complete the line.
It is not yet clear when it will open.
State officials, who are in talks with the company to extend the line, have been pushing for years to upgrade the line to include a new track, and the state is seeking $1.6 billion in federal funding for the project.
Virgin Atlantic’s rail line runs from Branson to Bristol, a town of about 1,000 people about 50 miles east of the Virginia border.
Virgin America, which is based in Virginia, operates the trains.
The railroad’s last major construction was in 2002, when it was finished for a year and a half and was due to close for another two years.
Virgin Atlantic also operates a small train line that connects to the Amtrak line in the U.S. Virgin is the only operator of Amtrak’s commuter rail service in the country.
The train service, which was shuttered in 2009, has more than 5,000 passengers a day.
The rail line, known as Branson Line, opened in 1994 to connect the Virgin Valley and Branson Valley Railway to the Brannan Expressway, a rail line that runs from New Orleans to St. Louis.
The line was designed by British architect Graham Stephenson.
It connects the two main railroad networks in Branson County, which includes Branson and Braintree.
It has more trains than the rest of the county combined, with more than 300 trains operating each day.