MARC Trains to add weekend service

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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby Amtrak7 » Thu Mar 13, 2014 7:09 pm

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryla ... 0117.story

MARC will add a car or two to the weekend consists.
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby dt_rt40 » Fri Mar 14, 2014 12:53 pm

Great news that people are aware of it and using it.
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby MACTRAXX » Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:45 am

dt_rt40 wrote:Great news that people are aware of it and using it.


Rt40: I will second that - growing weekend ridership is the incentive to make this service change permanent...

Just remember "Use It or Lose It!"

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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby Arlington » Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:58 pm

MARC 677 on April 12 was so crowded (and 4 double deckers) that it was *full* before it reached BWI. About 100 of "us" (a mix of air-travelers and local blossom-viewers)were waiting at BWI to board.

To accommodate the crush, they put only "local" passengers on (to odenton, Bowie, New Carrollton), and instead commandeered Amtrak #89 (a NER that ordinarily does not stop at BWI) .

Congrats to Amtrak and MARC for coordinating that.

-------
For my Northbound return on Sunday on MARC 480, they ran a consist of 5 doubles and a single in the middle. There was plenty of room :-). ON that trip, many were going north for an Orioles game, but about 40 air travelers used the BWI shuttle bus to go to the airport (and 90% of them got off at Southwest's Terminal A stop).
"Trying to solve congestion by making roadways wider is like trying to solve obesity by buying bigger pants."--Charles Marohn
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby Arlington » Sun Apr 13, 2014 7:59 pm

http://www.wtop.com/109/3602316/Records ... is-weekend

Here's a fair use quote from WTOP:
Crowds also flocked to MARC trains as a way to avoid the massive backups on I-95.

"Saturday, we did find extremely crowded conditions, it was standing room only on some trains," Maryland Transit Administration spokesman Paul Shepard says.

Between the Cherry Blossoms parade, the Wizards at home at the Verizon Center and the Orioles home at Camden Yards, Shepard says the crowding was "sort of like a perfect storm there for having large crowds on a train."

Penn Line trains were full on Sunday too, but not as packed as the trains on Saturday that had some passengers standing up all the way from BWI to Union Station. Overall, Shepard describes this weekend's MARC trains as more crowded than on a normal weekday because of the nice weather and major events.

"It caused great demand for our MARC weekend service. We don't have figures yet, but we do believe when the final tally comes in, we're going to have some fantastic ridership results," Shepard says.

In December, there were about 4,000 trips on the Penn Line in the first weekend of service. By March, the number had climbed to 6,500 in a weekend, prompting MARC to add more cars to weekend trains.
"Trying to solve congestion by making roadways wider is like trying to solve obesity by buying bigger pants."--Charles Marohn
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby Arlington » Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:05 am

So, does anyone have MARC's May Weekend ridership numbers?

When last we left this story, WTOP was reporting 6,500 riders per weekend (in March having grown from 4,000 in the opening weekend).
Cherry Blossoms saw 13,000. So maybe a fair current estimate is 7,000 per weekend?

May had 4.5 weekends. We don't know how Memorial Days "behave" but let's assume they're "normal". We'd expect about 30,000 MARC weekend riders for the whole month of May.

Amtrak says it lost 10,000 passengers to MARC in May (see quote at end). That implies that for every 1 passenger MARC "cannibalized" from Amtrak, it "stimulated" about 2 more. MARC "stole" 10,000 from Amtrak and "stimulated" 20,000 more (admittedly, some of these were likelo stolen from WMATA's B30 (Greenbelt-BWI) and the MTA's light rail lines too)

We don't know how many WAS-BWI-BAL "locals" Amtrak kept, but, roughly, MARC weekend service has somewhere between doubled and tripled the train patronage WAS-BWI-BAL.

Amtrak writes in its May Performance Report (page A 3.2)
This route’s decline in ridership is traceable to south of New York markets, in particular the BAL-BWI-WAS segment which lost about 10,000 trips (-26%) in May due to the recent addition of MARC weekend service in those markets. However, some of these seats in this segment were backfilled with sales in higher revenue markets.
"Trying to solve congestion by making roadways wider is like trying to solve obesity by buying bigger pants."--Charles Marohn
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby TheOneKEA » Sun Aug 03, 2014 10:21 am

Now that weekend service has been established, I would like to see the MTA begin assisting Amtrak in their long-term planning to improve the WAS-BAL segment of the NEC. Specifically, it would be a big boost to the northbound service if Track A from WINANS to FULTON could be improved.
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Re: MARC Trains to add weekend service

Postby ThirdRail7 » Sun Aug 03, 2014 2:59 pm

TheOneKEA wrote:Now that weekend service has been established, I would like to see the MTA begin assisting Amtrak in their long-term planning to improve the WAS-BAL segment of the NEC. Specifically, it would be a big boost to the northbound service if Track A from WINANS to FULTON could be improved.


Other than putting in a high speed crossover from 1 to A at Winans, what would you can do to really improve it? I suppose you could raise it back to 80, but is it really worth the cost for such a short distance? This especially holds true if they plan to ditch the electrics.
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