Amtrak Standard Stations

Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, gprimr1, Amtrak67 of America, Tadman

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby Alcochaser » Mon Oct 09, 2017 1:48 am

Hammond IN may be the most original standard station out there left.

I think it's 100% original down to the pointless arrow.
User avatar
Alcochaser
 
Posts: 850
Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2004 4:20 am

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Mon Oct 09, 2017 5:57 am

It would appear that there is newspeak for Amshack in place - standard station.

Anyone here ever lay eyes upon one of the first to be built - Poinciana FL. This was to be the terminus of Amtrak's stillborn Auto-Trak service. It likely was one of the first to built after the rush to wisely get out of the Section 4.4 facilities (Richmond. Cincinnati, Kansas City, Jax).

Poinciana continued as a station stop until about 1975, and after all too many 0/0 "on-offs", the structure was razed.

Sometime during the '80's, I located the site and found a few artifacts such as pieces of Red and Blue plastic. Today, I'd place my bets the site has been redeveloped, or at least that is what the Googlemobile would suggest.
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 12891
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Aurora Sub; MP 18.71)

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby Greg Moore » Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:27 am

Gilbert B Norman wrote:It would appear that there is newspeak for Amshack in place - standard station.

Anyone here ever lay eyes upon one of the first to be built - Poinciana FL. This was to be the terminus of Amtrak's stillborn Auto-Trak service. It likely was one of the first to built after the rush to wisely get out of the Section 4.4 facilities (Richmond. Cincinnati, Kansas City, Jax).

Poinciana continued as a station stop until about 1975, and after all too many 0/0 "on-offs", the structure was razed.

Sometime during the '80's, I located the site and found a few artifacts such as pieces of Red and Blue plastic. Today, I'd place my bets the site has been redeveloped, or at least that is what the Googlemobile would suggest.


Not really newspeak. It's been since the beginning article on it and honestly, I don't think was a bad idea. Standardization can be a very good idea, especially when it comes to product design.

That said, their standard designs pretty much reflect the era (early 70s) and budget they sprung from. Which is unfortunate.
Check out QuiCR, Quick, Crowdsourced Responses for businesses.
Greg Moore
 
Posts: 4928
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 12:15 am

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:21 am

Well, but also consider what kind of decay Amtrak was fighting against in the Rainbow Era. An extremely high percentage of their inherited stations were completely decrepit, the tracks were decrepit, the equipment was decrepit. Standardization served a very important purpose in mending fences with customer service. Yeah, the equipment was still pretty sad...but by Year 3 or 4 it had been completely repainted in a consistent scheme and looked cleaner than it had in decades. Yeah, the tracks still sucked...but at least they had a master plan in motion for acquiring and sprucing up the NEC and had shuffled some money around to at least weed-spray a lot of their hosts' tracks on other major routes. And the standard stations, utilitarian as they were, were clean and functional where the ruins that preceded them were anything but. And historical preservation was still in the dark ages compared to all the historical station rebirths that have happened since, while new stations weren't being built with any sort of architectural distinction or faux-historical touches. Amtrak didn't have the wherewithal to make a clean sweep on very much physical plant back then...so the cross-country cookie-cutter Amshack "Marshall Plan" was one of the few viable plays they had to try to prove to the public that they cared about keeping and improving the passenger network for the long-term. And it worked. You got a friendly, consistent customer-facing experience not at all unlike an airline ticketing counter + boarding gate that Americans were familiar with. The train and the tracks may have been antiquated, but the travel experience as a whole got more orderly and wasn't nearly as chaotic as it was before.

Amshacks are butt-ugly and you'd have to be contrarian-in-love with ugly kitsch to want to historically preserve more than a couple examples of the travel equivalent of shag carpeting...but there's no question Amtrak wouldn't be here today if they hadn't built all those things in the name of standardized customer service experience.



Idea!: Somebody needs to create a near life-size fold-up Amshack with accurate furnishings that can be loaded onto the Exhibit Train and set up/broken down anywhere as a pop-up kiosk. Don't forget, their 50th Anniversary is less than 4 years away. It'd be like an artfully disguised shed or tent you could have historical exhibits inside, or pop up a podium to make a major local speech. Everything 1970's is kitsch nowadays, so they might as well embrace the kitsch that's in their own DNA for fun. :wink:
F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Posts: 7196
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2005 7:26 pm
Location: North Cambridge

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby BandA » Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:42 pm

It would have been interesting if you could disassemble these stations and move them to a new location. That sometimes happened in the pre-Amtrak days. Alas, the "durable materials" like cement and brick are not really modular.

Also interesting is how it recommends leaving masonry walls exposed on the inside. Exposed = uninsulated, poor energy efficiency. Which they would have known about by 1974. Hope that recommendation was ignored.

Amtrak is technically a private organization, so I assume they don't publish their documents into the public domain. The current "great stations" as opposed to "standard stations" say you can obtain drawings and design documents, but they are not on the public website. It's also a pain finding the documents for ADA compliance standards.
User avatar
BandA
 
Posts: 1880
Joined: Thu Oct 11, 2012 11:47 am

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby gokeefe » Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:34 pm

Gilbert B Norman wrote:It would appear that there is newspeak for Amshack in place - standard station.


Actually I specifically avoided "Amshak"/"Amshack" as this term tends to refer to temporary structures, modular or otherwise built in a bare utilitarian style that serve as makeshift passenger rail stations on Amtrak.

The Standard Stations were indeed bare and utilitarian in many respects but they were not temporary or makeshift and that is a pretty significant distinction in my eyes. In fact quite to the contrary the Standard Stations were specifically designed to be permanent emplacements to be maintained and operated for an indefinite period.

The fact that they have a uniform aesthetic is also a major distinguishing characteristic from the "Amshaks" whose common form factor is expediency.

I agree that Hammond-Whiting IN could be "the one". That place is truly amazing for just how much is original (right down to the seats it would appear). As with many things on Amtrak the "Standard Stations" were also a "first" in that they were the first ever nationwide standard design for rail passenger stations.

As an expression of national taste (or lack thereof) in that area I think they're also significant to period architecture.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9819
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby John_Perkowski » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:10 am

Lest we forget

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation is not the first railroad to have standard station structures.

I give you the Southern Pacific:
~John Perkowski: Moderator: General Discussion: Locomotives, Rolling Stock, and Equipment
Assistant Administrator: Railroad.net/forums
Please don't feed the spammers! If you see spam, please notify a Moderator
User avatar
John_Perkowski
 
Posts: 4474
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2004 5:12 pm
Location: Off the Q main near Parkville MO

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby R&DB » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:46 am

John_Perkowski wrote:Lest we forget

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation is not the first railroad to have standard station structures.

I give you the Southern Pacific:


See also Central Railroad of New Jersey: Red Bank, Matawan, Branchport Stations.
Harry
User avatar
R&DB
 
Posts: 184
Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 12:55 pm
Location: Sou.Sec. MP 53.6

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby gokeefe » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:07 pm

The current list of existing unmodified Standard Stations that still have Amtrak service:

Hammond-Whiting, IN; (HMI)

Grand Forks, ND; (GFK)

Interesting that upon further reading Richmond Staples Mill Road Station does not appear to be a "standard station". It's ironic to consider that a "Standard Station" potentially would have represented a significant upgrade over the 1975 design of RVR.

It makes me wonder if buildings like RVR were part of the reason for the creation of the Standard Stations Program in the first place.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9819
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby Roadgeek Adam » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:17 pm

MACTRAXX wrote:
The EGE wrote:Tri-State station in Catlettsburg, KY (built 1975, abandoned 1998) is still extant. Far as I know, it has not been used for anything since its closure.


EGE (and Everyone:)

From a Google Maps view TSS Station looks to be intact but modified and used as a CSX facility.
It is listed as "Pikes CSX" 101,135 12 Street Catlettsburg,KY 41129 alongside US 60 Center Street.

MACTRAXX


I was there in March. The structure is basically standing there extant. There were work permits on the building, but nothing going on. It looked empty though.

Image
...they are solid plastic, so don't settle for imitation.
User avatar
Roadgeek Adam
 
Posts: 1279
Joined: Sat Aug 01, 2009 8:01 am
Location: Somewhere in Western New York

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby gokeefe » Tue Oct 10, 2017 5:47 pm

Worth noting that TSS does not appear to have been a Standard Station. If it was the "buff" colored concrete block has been removed and the roofline altered.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9819
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby bretton88 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:26 pm

Omaha has to be on this list, a classic Amshack that has not been updated at all, though kept in good condition.
bretton88
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2017 11:57 pm

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby mtuandrew » Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:57 pm

As far as I know, MSP Midway hasn’t been updated or much changed since it closed as a public facility (now only a crew base), and still has the pointless arrow sign. Check out “730 Transfer Road, St. Paul, MN” on your favorite mapper software. That situation isn’t supposed to change in the foreseeable future, so we will have an unaltered 300A for a while at least.

And if you are in the neighborhood, the Twin City Model Railroad Museum just moved into the next building down and very much worth a visit. (If only they & Amtrak could have come to an agreement instead...)
User avatar
mtuandrew
 
Posts: 4082
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:59 am
Location: the Manassas Gap Independent Line

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby Roadgeek Adam » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:09 pm

bretton88 wrote:Omaha has to be on this list, a classic Amshack that has not been updated at all, though kept in good condition.


Grand Forks station also has one.

gokeefe wrote:Worth noting that TSS does not appear to have been a Standard Station. If it was the "buff" colored concrete block has been removed and the roofline altered.


https://csanders429.files.wordpress.com ... 0-1979.jpg

It also looked like that in active service.
...they are solid plastic, so don't settle for imitation.
User avatar
Roadgeek Adam
 
Posts: 1279
Joined: Sat Aug 01, 2009 8:01 am
Location: Somewhere in Western New York

Re: Amtrak Standard Stations

Postby gokeefe » Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:21 pm

The current list of unmodified Standard Stations with Amtrak service

Hammond-Whiting, IN; (HMI): Wolverine

Grand Forks, ND; (GFK): Empire Builder

Added Omaha & Carbondale

Omaha, NE; (OMA): California Zephyr

Carbondale, IL; (CDL): City of New Orleans, Illini, Saluki.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9819
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

PreviousNext

Return to Amtrak

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: johnpbarlow and 8 guests