Cardinal discussion

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

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gokeefe
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by gokeefe » Tue Apr 12, 2016 9:37 am

Every once in a while you find something like this:

From WCPO-TV in Cincinnati:
CINCINNATI — “Low-hanging fruit.”

That’s what railroad advocates have called restoring daily train service between Cincinnati and Chicago, hot off Congress' adoption of a new set of laws governing America’s interstate highways and railways over the next five years.
...
In the law, earmarks tax dollars specifically for maintaining, operating and enhancing Amtrak service — to the tune of $8 billion over the next five years.

Of the $8 billion Amtrak would get if the bill becomes law, $20 million each year would go toward “restoration and enhancement of passenger rail service," which is precisely what advocates want to see here in Cincinnati.
This is the first I have heard of these funds. I have no idea if they will be used for operating funds or capital improvements but its worth noting that Amtrak will in fact be receiving a funding increase to pay for increasing service. This is the first time in many many years that I can recall that Amtrak will receive appropriated funds specifically targeted towards increasing service.
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Backshophoss
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Backshophoss » Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:54 pm

While CP(+EHH) have given up for now(Justice Dept killed CP's "voting trust" plan),
NS needs to regroup and get back to "normal"
CSX would JUMP for that $$$,claiming that would be almost enough to stop the downgrade(maybe?)
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gokeefe
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by gokeefe » Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:06 am

All the more reason to believe that Amtrak is about to make a big move somewhere on their national system. You can see the signals with the potential Gulf Coaster. For now that might be the priority due to the populations served but I think the daily Cardinal is probably pretty high on the list.
gokeefe

Woody
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Woody » Wed Apr 13, 2016 10:46 am

Pick up about 350,000 more riders right there, slash operating losses per passenger/per mile/per etc., send customer satisfaction scores soaring, add to connectivity, improve the Amtrak brand, pick up a couple of new friends in Congress, help the results of other trains by spreading Amtrak's considerable fixed cost overhead a bit thinner over more train miles, make national advertising more efficient, and more.

All that's postponed for two years, due to the debacle with Nippon Sharyo's design failure. A devastating setback.

Greg Moore
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Greg Moore » Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:31 am

So as much as I hate to suggest it, take the Bi-level money that has to be spent by the end of 2017 and turn it to CAF and say, "give us 30-50-?" single level cars next year and push the sleeper's back.

Sure, they may not be ideal and don't really address the need for bi-levels, but they get more equipment with existing money on an existing production line and suddenly there's enough cars for expansion.
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gokeefe
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by gokeefe » Wed Apr 13, 2016 12:48 pm

Interesting proposal. I do feel that the bi-level order delay actually helps Amtrak in some surprising ways. In a rising revenue environment it puts them in a good position to go back to Congress and ask for more capital funds for wreck rebuilds of Superliner cars. It also positions them to make a strong case for more (and not less) capital funding for the rest of their fleet needs. The sequential funding of their capital needs is part of the reason why this is such a problem. They need simultaneous funding that relieves the constant operational strains faced by so many of their services across the board.
gokeefe

Greg Moore
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Greg Moore » Wed Apr 13, 2016 7:39 pm

It's a tough environment to ask for more money and Amtrak may want to wait until after the election. But, I think you're right. Amtrak is riding a string of successes and a changing demographic that is far more likely to take the train. This means I think Amtrak really needs to plan for growth anyway they can at this point (more routes, more service on existing routes, etc.)
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Alcochaser
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Re: Cardinal Crisis (CSX downgrade of lines)

Post by Alcochaser » Thu Apr 14, 2016 1:39 pm

In the mean time, the Axe moves closer on the CSX side.

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStor ... e-38362582" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Arlington
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Arlington » Mon Nov 28, 2016 5:49 pm

Here is a new article that I'm adding "for the record"

I believe the title is incorrect:
Amtrak eyes daily service along West Virginia routes

More like, "A bunch of civic boosters from along the route voted unanimously in a show vote in support of daily service".

Basically, the best you can say is that an Amtrak spokesperson took official note that:
“Shortly after the Cardinal Conference (in Cincinnati), the (West Virginia) Governor’s Conference on Tourism unanimously passed a motion in favor of daily Cardinal service
I read that as, "birds vote in favor of homeowners spreading more birdseed," but maybe you read it differently?
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Greg Moore
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Greg Moore » Mon Nov 28, 2016 6:44 pm

I suspect you're right, but I think the more support that comes from local support the easier it is to get the Feds to commit funds.

And I think it's proof that Amtrak isn't easily categorized as a Red State/Blue State issue.
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hs3730
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by hs3730 » Mon Nov 28, 2016 7:47 pm

Wonder if Iowa Pacific can be convinced (financially) into extending the Hoosier State to DC. I *think* they would only need one additional trainset.

mmi16
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by mmi16 » Mon Nov 28, 2016 8:37 pm

Arlington wrote:Here is a new article that I'm adding "for the record"
SNIP
And Amtrak's response will be if the birds want to fund the birdseed - with more than enough funds - Amtrak might begin the fight with CSX and Buckingham Branch to provide daily service. It will be a big fight as certain operating decisions get made to enable the 3 day per week operation that exists; significant other changes would have to be made to support daily operation and the birds most likely would have to fund those changes.
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Philly Amtrak Fan
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by Philly Amtrak Fan » Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:05 pm

hs3730 wrote:Wonder if Iowa Pacific can be convinced (financially) into extending the Hoosier State to DC. I *think* they would only need one additional trainset.
Does IP have sleepers available?

I'd try to get the Hoosier State to Cincinnati to give Cincinnati daily service (change the schedule to have reasonable times at Cincy). There's no financial reason to run it all the way to DC if I'm IP unless the schedule changes to make it worthwhile to go from IND or CIN to WAS as opposed to the current schedule.

mtuandrew
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by mtuandrew » Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:50 pm

Philly: they do, from the Pullman Rail Journey business. I also like the idea of the Hoosier to Cincinnati, or to Louisville if the financial support is stronger there. Both states have governments that eat up these public-private partnerships, so might throw some pennies towards the project.

twropr
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Post by twropr » Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:01 am

Has the Cardinal run any extra coaches or sleepers during the Thanksgiving holiday?
Andy

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