Trains For America

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New video by Onboard Midwest promotes HSR for St. Paul Union Depot

On the heels of the news earlier this summer that Ramsey County had approved the purchase of St. Paul Union Depot from the Postal Service and that its revitalization would be a part of the state’s application for rail stimulus dollars, comes this video by Onboard Midwest. Onboard Midwest seems to be a Twin Cities-based advocacy organization for Midwest High-Speed Rail, and they indicate that that Union Depot will be the terminus for the Twin Cities spur of the project.

I couldn’t find much in the way of hard evidence to either confirm or deny this. Any insights from TFA readers? In the past I’ve heard that Amtrak would be unlikely to want to move to Union Depot because it doesn’t have the service facilities that its current ugly/awful Midway Station has. Let’s hope Onboard Midwest is right about this one.

Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Politics, Regional USA Passenger Rail, United States High Speed Rail

2 Responses

  1. Nathanael says:

    High speed rail is absolutely 100% always planned to go to St. Paul Union Depot.

    First, the Post Office has to leave, and the government entity which is going to manage it has to take full possession.

    Then, it has to be refurbished.

    That will, of course, create all the servicing facilities Amtrak wants; there’s plenty of room. Currently that can’t be done because the Post Office is in said room. Amtrak has said clearly that it would love to move in as long as it doesn’t have to pay for it.

    Amtrak doesn’t want to pay for maintaining St. Paul Union Depot, but with the current plans it won’t have to; I don’t remember whether it’s St. Paul, the County, or the Regional Rail Authority which is taking control of the Depot, but it’s one of them. The push is consistent, from St. Paul, the county, and the Midwest High Speed Rail compact, so it’s pretty clearly going to happen. (As an aside, both St. Paul and the county it’s in, Ramsey IIRC, are among the most fanatical rail-supporters of all the governments in the entire Midwest.)

  2. Mr. Willkie says:

    I am for High-Speed Trains and therefore, do NOT great me wrong.
    However, St Paul-Chicago is only 410 Miles. 7 hours by I-94/90 and 8 hours by Amtrak. and then again. lots of flights. Delta and Southwest for Example. Thus saying 7 hours by Car, their is no towns from St Paul until Madison. and Madison has not seen Passenger Trains sense Milwaukee left if even 50 years ago, which is my life time. okay. we do NOT have enough options getting into Chicago, Interstate and Sub Towns. The Airport is off I-90, US 12. and other Turnpikes. I can hardly believe that their is enough money coming in to even begin to pay of this High Speed Train.
    It will not be cheeper then taking the SW Flight to Chicago even with 15% Tax Including Post 911 Tax.
    So. let us wait and see what happens.

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August 2009


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