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Bar cars returning to Metro-North commuter trains

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HARTFORD — Railroad cars equipped with bars for serving alcohol are returning to commuter trains running between New York City and Connecticut, restoring a tradition dating back 50 years to the delight of many commuters.

Democratic Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy announced Tuesday the state will buy another 60 cars for Metro-North‘s New Haven Line. He says 10 of them will be converted into bar cars under current plans. The first new bar car would go online by 2020.

Bar cars were retired in 2014 because they couldn’t be coupled to a new fleet of train cars. The cars had faux-wood paneling and red leather lounges that some riders say evoked a 1960s “Mad Men” vibe of martini gatherings.

Malloy says the New Haven Line remains the country’s busiest commuter rail line. The service carried more than 40 million passengers last year.