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1=Mono Chan= Chan
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So what do we think of Anderson trying to reorient Amtrak towards corridor-based service?




Big Dick Anderson is an airline plant made to destroy Amtrak. It's not even subtle at this point.


Is it bad that I think this is a decent idea? You can't compete with airlines on long haul routes, and passenger rail works best in the 100-300 mile sweet spot of "spend all day driving or spend more time in the terminal at each end than you do in the air".


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Also interesting – Amtrak has made a map of potential corridor services by 2030. So this is what we could be looking at.


I would bet Amtrak's LD trains don't even make a dent in Delta's bottom line.


I'm kind of the opinion of "why not both?". LD trains will never compete but they do provide a niche public service for rural communities or those that can't fly. However, I completely agree that Amtrak's focus should be on corridor services. That's where Amtrak's future is. I just don't like that we're being made to choose between one or the other. Put out the money to support LD and expand corridor trains.


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I think that the number of LD trains can be safely downgraded without ruining everything. For instance, we don't need TWO Washington DC to Chicago overnight trains (Capitol Limited and Cardinal). Based on the ticket prices I've seen, you could probably eliminate the Cardinal/turn it into a day service from DC into WV and keep the Hoosier State (runs Chicago into Indiana on the non-Cardinal days on the Cardinal route) then make the Capitol Limited (the bed prices of which are less than half of the Cardinal, presumably because you can get way more beds in a Superliner than a Viewliner) the only DC-Chicago train.

Right now, there are three Chicago-to-West-Coast trains. Do we really need all three?

Way too many Florida services as well. Keep the Auto Train as it's a pretty big draw, and then a single Silver service should be plenty to link NYC/DC to Florida.You could probably take a couple of those Silver trains and turn them into day service for parts of Florida and the Carolinas.

As usual, the big argument against losing Long Distance trains is the tiny communities along the way that are served. Even if the Empire Builder stops in Bumfuck Montana at 3am, that's still a vital service for those kinds of communities, provides a link to the rest of the country that might otherwise not be attainable. Of course, Congress complains that Amtrak loses money, then when they say "Okay, let us kill the service through your flyover state" they get all pissy.


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Anderson is a post-Deregulation airline executive. He thinks what was good for Delta Airlines, will be good for Amtrak.

Airline executives are scumbags, pure and simple.


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I can already see just what would happen if Amtrak was run like a US-based airline. Some conductor would be like, "I'm sorry. You'll have to give up your seat and deboard, because a Platinum Elite Guest Rewards member wants to sit there."

And if you don't, well, the "Amtrak Police" will beat your ass bloody, and unceremoniously drag you down the aisle.


The NEC is a fucking money pit and the long distance trains are the only ones that actually have half a shot of financial stability. I'm tired of everyone buying into the notion that Amtrak should shed the long distance routes and focus on the NEC when all of the actual cost analysis and railroad press show that the long distance trains cost so much less to operate and, if marketed and run correctly, would give you a much better return.

Go look at how much deferred maintenance there is on the NEC. Look at how much it will cost to bring it to "good working order." It's in the magnitude of $60 billion. Or Amtrak could look at its current long distance routes and understand that a lot of people aren't taking the full train and are getting on and off at intermediate stops and time the trains accordingly. For instance, why does the west bound California Zephyr stop in Omaha, NE at 11 fucking PM?

The other thing strangling Amtrak is the inability to run intermediate length routes without state funding. It cripples their ability to expand long distance route ridership.

But basically my thoughts are that Conrail should have kept the NEC and charged people the appropriate costs to run on it, and Amtrak should keep its long distance routes.


>But basically my thoughts are that Conrail should have kept the NEC and charged people the appropriate costs to run on it, and Amtrak should keep its long distance routes.
To be fair, deferred maintenance started under Pensy so they would have still have had to deal with a ludicrous infrastructure debt.

But yeah the argument that the NEC is profitable is beyond laughable. The Gateway project alone could probably cover the expenses of every other Amtrak route for at least a decade.

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