Amtrak Adjusts Schedule of Pere Marquette to Accommodate Track Work

CHICAGO – Amtrak is temporarily adjusting the westbound schedule for the Pere Marquette service on the Chicago-Grand Rapids route to accommodate track work planned by CSX Transportation, the owner of the train’s route in Michigan. The temporary schedule will begin June 4 and continue through June 21, 2007. The westbound Pere Marquette (Train 371) will be scheduled to operate one hour earlier from all stations. The eastbound Pere Marquette (Train 370) schedule is unaffected. These changes will compensate for anticipated delays due to the track work. “While we recognize this temporary schedule change might cause some inconvenience for our passengers,

Amtrak Delivers Study of Passenger Rail Service between St. Louis and Springfield, Mo.

CHICAGO – Amtrak has provided a report to the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) that shows formidable obstacles to possible passenger rail service between St. Louis and Springfield, Mo. The report requested by MoDOT found strategic merit to the proposed route, including serving the state’s third largest metropolitan area, tourism potential, and connections to Amtrak’s national rail service. However, it would also require an initial significant capital investment and ongoing state operating support. The lack of a competitive trip time versus that of automobiles and a lower than expected ridership projection were also cited as concerns. Specifically, the report found

Reducing Human Error and Strengthening Hazardous Materials Tank Cars Top Rail Safety Agenda for 2007, says DOT Secretary Peters

WASHINGTON — The Department will issue a final rule to prevent human factor-caused train accidents and complete research for new hazardous materials tank car design standards this year to continue recent improvements in rail safety, U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters said as part of a progress report on a Department campaign to improve rail safety. She noted that preliminary data for 2006 shows the number of train accidents declined for the second year in a row and there were fewer highway-rail grade crossing collisions. Last year, train accidents dropped 11.3 percent over 2005 resulting in a train accident rate

CTA Trains, Buses Back to Normal

CHICAGO — Chicago Transit Authority rail and bus service is back to normal, a day after elevated trains and several bus routes that serve the Loop were temporarily rerouted due to a crane accident at a downtown construction site. CTA routes No. 20 Madison, No. 56 Milwaukee, No. 60 Blue Island/26th and No. 120 Navy Pier have returned to their regular routing eastbound. All CTA buses and trains rerouted due to the crane accident downtown are operating along their regular routes. Southbound Red Line trains will continue to operate over the elevated tracks until 1 a.m. Monday, May 21 due

CTA Trains and Buses Rerouted

CHICAGO — Chicago Transit Authority elevated trains and several bus routes that serve the Loop are temporarily rerouted due to a crane accident at a downtown construction site. Although trains are running, elevated trains will not serve stations along Wabash and Lake. Buses that normally travel on Washington and Madison are being rerouted. The following routes are affected: Green Line: Trains are operating into and out of the Loop via Van Buren and Wells. Brown Line: Inbound trains will only operate as far as the Belmont station before turning back. There will be no Brown Line service at Loop stations.

FRA Launches Two New Automated Inspection Vehicles to Detect Track Flaws; 100,000 Miles of Track to be Federally Inspected Each Year

WASHINGTON — Two new custom-built inspection vehicles equipped with state of the art technology to help identify track flaws that could lead to train derailments are now in service and will allow the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to triple the amount of track it inspects each year by automated means to nearly 100,000 miles, announced FRA Administrator Joseph H. Boardman. “Finding track problems and getting them fixed before a train accident occurs is key to safeguarding communities,” Boardman said. Boardman explained that the new automated track inspection vehicles increase the FRA’s fleet to five and are primarily used on high-volume

Amtrak-Illinois DOT Feasibility Study Determines Most Direct Route Best for Service to Rockford, Northwestern Illinois and Dubuque, Iowa

CHICAGO – After a period of extensive public involvement, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has chosen the most direct route as the best choice of four options for restoring rail service to a section of the state which lost passenger rail service more than 25 years ago. Following three community meetings and a web-based public comment period, IDOT has asked Amtrak to work with the CN railroad, which owns the tracks, to restore state-supported service when funding becomes available. “It is clear from the series of public meetings we’ve held over the last few months and the extensive amount

Ridership Surges as Amtrak Celebrates National Transportation Week

WASHINGTON – In recognition of National Transportation Week, Amtrak today announced that ridership across the country reached 14.3 million during the first seven months of the fiscal year, an increase of 5 percent over last year. The biggest growth was in Amtrak’s short-distance corridors outside the Northeast — routes of 500 miles or less — with more than 12.3 million passengers traveling. The Amtrak-owned Northeast Corridor (Washington, DC – New York – Boston) continues to be the railroad’s busiest route, with 5.7 million passengers traveling during the first seven months of the fiscal year (October 1, 2006 – March 31,

FRA Issues Grant to Nevada DOT to Complete Evaluation of Proposed Maglev Train

WASHINGTON — The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is issuing a $962,240 grant to the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) to complete preliminary environmental and engineering studies for a 35-mile segment of a proposed magnetic levitation (maglev) passenger train corridor between Las Vegas and Primm, Nev. Among the factors to be examined include: regional and local planning goals; current and future demographics and land use, growth and development patterns; as well as existing and planned transportation facilities and services. — Special to Railfanning.org News Wire

CTA to Relocate Historic Stationhouse

CHICAGO — The Chicago Transit Authority will relocate the existing historic stationhouse at Fullerton from 9:15 p.m. on Thursday, May 10 until 5 a.m. on Friday, May 11. Rail service will not be affected; however, Fullerton Avenue will be closed to through traffic between Sheffield and Halsted. CTA’s #74 Fullerton bus will be temporarily rerouted eastbound via Sheffield, Webster, Lincoln, Sheffield and Fullerton then resume the regular route. The stationhouse will be temporarily stored nearby until the work to install it at its permanent location is completed. The historic stationhouse will be refurbished and opened as an auxiliary entrance/exit for

1 2