by Gilbert B Norman
justalurker66 wrote: ↑Fri Aug 12, 2022 6:49 pmMr. Lurker, I must wonder if the UP/C&NW North Line has had as much of a ridership decline as has BNSF?Gilbert B Norman wrote: ↑Fri Aug 12, 2022 8:15 amReason is simple; at least here in "the land of the Burlingtons", the business is gone and it's never coming back.BNSF service did drop more than the other lines (2019 vs 2021) but they still carried more passengers than any other district. The Heritage Corridor and South West Service were the hardest hit. Gone forever? I am not that pessimistic.
The reason I wonder is clearly that line serves the most affluent Chicagoland region (household income, real estate assessments, kids that go to Ivy League schools from the likes of New Trier, whatever), while the BNSF, by those measurements, I think comes in second. If the "high powered" lawyers and C-Suiters that reside along both "have to go in", they will just get "behind the wheel".
While I'm surprised you note, and of course deferring to your immense knowledge of METRA affairs, that the GM&O and Wabash got hit the worst. On one hand, I would think "the front line" resides along both, but on the other, even in the best of pre-COVID times, those lines barely had more than rush hour service.
By that same token, how badly do you find the SOO to Antioch affected?
But to close back on topic, whatever METRA can do to curtail this order for new equipment, I think would be in their best interest. Soon, someone will "wake 'em up" to realize that the existing pre-COVID levels of service are simply not sustainable and they will be left with a supply of surplus engines and cars that can be cannibalized so the survivors can "live to fight another day".