Trains For America

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Romney: Amtrak a ‘classic example’ of unnecessary government spending – The Hill’s Transportation Report

Romney: Amtrak a ‘classic example’ of unnecessary government spending – The Hill’s Transportation Report.

Mitt Romney says the federal government cannot be all things to all people, HOWEVER, it can be the number one Sugar Daddy on earth for highway and airport special interests. He calls for privatizing Amtrak, Same old, same old.

The GOP presidential candidate says Amtrak should be privatized to save taxpayer money.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Thursday that the federal government could rein in spending if the national passenger rail service, Amtrak, was not national anymore.


Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Politics

U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood Announces $13.6 Million for Oregon Intercity Passenger Rail Projects

Federal Railroad Administration

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U.S.Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs
Washington, D.C.



U.S.  Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today awarded a $13.6 million grant to the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) to modernize the Portland Union Station, upgrade passenger rail service along Amtrak’s Cascades route and continue further development of an integrated, statewide rail network

“These investments will improve passenger and freight rail service in Oregon,” said Secretary LaHood. “By providing more efficient and reliable rail service, we are building a stronger economic future.”

A highlight of the rail dollars provided includes:

• $4 million to fund preliminary engineering and environmental work for track replacement and expansion, facility upgrades to comply with the Americans with Disability Act, as well as energy conservation measures at Portland Union Station. These improvements will reduce train station congestion and accommodate forecasted increases in passenger service.  ODOT will contribute $1 million to this project.

• $1.3 million to support final design and construction of additional work on the station’s roof and other structural upgrades, coupled with a $5.9 million grant previously awarded by FRA for roof replacement.  In addition to additional roof replacement and seismic upgrades, work will also include replacing gutters, downspouts, repairing skylights and windows, and insulation in the attic.

• $4.2 million for a draft and final environmental work and service planning to identify improvements for the Cascades route from Eugene to Portland, OR.  ODOT will contribute $5.8 million for this phase of the project.

Amtrak’s Cascades Service, which operates between Eugene, OR to Vancouver, BC, is one of the railroad’s fastest growing routes.  Ridership increased 10 percent in 2010 to a record-breaking 838,251 passengers, and is trending to break that record in 2011.

Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy, Regional USA Passenger Rail

They rob trains in San Antonio

Maybe some Little Rock passengers on board?

Today’s northbound Texas Eagle from San Antonio was robbed overnight while at San Antonio, with the cars in from LA being broken into as well as the staff car. All luggage was taken belonging to the passengers as well as the Amtrak staff that was downstairs in the cars. Reportedly, even the possessions of the Amtrak crew, including the conductor, were taken. Police believe it may have been done by a drug gang that hangs out in the area.

Filed under: Uncategorized

German Railway to serve London by 2013

Railway News | Rail News | Railway Jobs | Rail Jobs | Railway Exhibitions | Railway Magazines | News Library | Article.

Germany’s Deutsche Bahn has confirmed it will begin running services to London through the Channel Tunnel from December 2013 – later than originally hoped.

Filed under: International High Speed Rail

So, now we’re partners? – Garl B. Latham – MyProgressiveRailroading

So, now we’re partners? – Garl B. Latham – MyProgressiveRailroading.

Mr. Lathan takes Transportation Secretary LaHood to the woodshed over something that transportation professionals have done a damn poor job of explaining to the public. Namely, there is a real distinction between conventional passenger trains and true High Speed Rail. Latham persuasively argues that good conventional trains on good schedules are cheaper and marketable.

Then, he said a few more things which indicated his continued ignorance of the issues at hand and the administration’s real intent behind its persistent proposals.

Regarding the feds’ fatuousness, LaHood indicated that the current administration “strongly supports” both “high speed rail and freight rail.” For whatever reason(s), the DOT remains unclear on the most basic concept of all: true H.S.R. is literally incompatible with existing Class I railway infrastructure and operations!

Read it all at the link above.

Filed under: Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy, United States High Speed Rail

Hearings – U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation

Hearings – U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—For more than a century, intercity passenger rail has been the backbone of our transportation network, capably moving people throughout our nation to drive economic growth.  And for more than four decades, Amtrak has been our one and only national intercity passenger rail carrier—which Congress created to make this essential function continue when other railroads were shedding their passenger rail operations.

Since it was created in 1970, Amtrak has had a somewhat tortured history, being forced to survive on anemic budgets and whipsawed by near constant political micro management.  And yet, impressively, it continues do much more than just chug along.  In fact, this year, Amtrak is expected to again reach record-ridership levels with more than 30 million people taking the train.


Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Politics, Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy

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September 2011