A second daily train from Seattle to Vancouver, B.C., could begin service next year, following a deal announced Thursday by the provincial government.
A passing track will be added to the BNSF corridor just north of the Canadian border. Currently, there is only one daily Amtrak round trip a day. Buses substitute for the train at other times.
"Hopefully, we can get up to four trains by 2012," said Bruce Agnew of the Seattle-based Discovery Institute's Cascadia Center, a longtime advocate for regional rail connections.
A provincial spokesman, Mike Long, said additional trains aren't planned now, but even a second train would help people reach the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.