The National Corridors Initiative, Inc.
Destination:Freedom

A Weekly North American Transportation Update

For transportation advocates and professionals, journalists,
and elected or appointed officials at all levels of government

Publisher: James P. RePass      E-Zine Editor: Molly McKay
Foreign Editor: David Beale      Webmaster: Dennis Kirkpatrick

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June 9, 2008
Vol. 9 No. 23

Copyright © 2008
NCI Inc., All Rights Reserved

Home Page: www.nationalcorridors.org

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IN THIS EDITION...   In This Edition...

  News Items…
All Subways Should Be Like Taipei’s Marvel Of Mass Transit
California’s Capitol Corridor Month Of May Ridership,
   Surges 11% vs. 2007
  Commuter Lines…
MBTA Will Replace Bridge On Greenbush Line
  Environmental Lines…
CN Introduces Online Greenhouse Gas-Emissions Calculator
  Safety Lines…
TSB Report Says Faulty Wheels Could Derail Trains
  Selected Rail Stocks…
 
  Events…
APT Keynoter Is Frank Busalacchi
Tri-State’s 2008 Garden State Gala June 24!
Amtrak Photo Contest
  Opinion…
The Environmental Movement Needs Adrenalin “Shot”:
   Peirce Interviewee
A Suggestion For Boston Service On Amtrak During The
   New London Bridge Replacement
  Publication Notes …


NEWS OF THE WEEK... News Items...

All Subways Should Be Like Taipei’s
Marvel Of Mass Transit

From Wired’s Blog: --- blog.wired.com
By Alexander Lew


Photo: dbdbrobot at www.flickr.com

Taipei’s insanely efficient, remarkably punctual and shockingly clean subway system is a marvel of mass transit every city should emulate.

With mass transit ridership in America rising alongside gas prices and people grumbling about the level of service, the Taipei Rapid Transit System has many lessons to offer on how to run a subway system. With customer satisfaction topping 94 percent, Taipei Metro may well be the best mass transit system in the world.

The San Francisco Municipal Railway considers 65 percent customer satisfaction a good mark, but that kind of performance earns you a D in school. New York does a little better with a C average, and the Chicago “L” manages to keep 80 percent of its passengers satisfied. But Taipei is in another league.

What makes it so good?

Although there are just 69 stations to serve a city of 2.6 million people, the Metro is the fastest, most efficient way to get around. In the 12 years since Taipei Metro has opened, it has cut from three hours to less than one the time it takes to get across town. It carries 1.1 million people a day yet last year it experienced just 36 delays of more than five minutes -- an impressive statistic that makes this subway one of the most reliable in the world.

It’s also one of the cleanest. Stations are remarkably tidy, particularly compared to those in America and even Europe. There are trash and recycling bins everywhere, and passengers are not only expected to drop their refuse in the right bin, they do so. Even the most crowded stations tend to have very little rubbish on the floor. Riders give the system a score of 95.5 percent for “overall tidiness.”

Knowing when your train arrives is important when using mass transit, and few things are more frustrating than waiting forever on a platform. Most stations in Taipei have television screens that display real-time arrival information. (They also show commercials, but we figure the subway system, which cost $18 billion to build, has some bills to pay.) The screens in transfer stations also tell you when connecting trains arrive so you can pick up the pace if necessary. Riders gave the system a score of 88.7 percent for providing accurate arrival information.

The system also scored in the high 80s for its ticket machines that are easy to use. Taipei ditched tickets in favor of tokens -- the opposite of what New York has done -- embedded with a microchip that records the passenger’s destination. Riders scan their tokens over the turnstile reader when entering the station, then drop it through a slot in the exit gate when leaving. Try leaving the wrong station -- meaning you’ve underpaid -- and the gate won’t open. The drawback to the system is the token machines only accept small denomination bills, and people usually have to get change at a booth -- which, oddly, doesn’t sell tokens.

The system isn’t perfect, though. One of its biggest shortcomings is the relatively small number of destinations -- just 69 stations. Taipei Metro has more lines under construction, includes the long-awaited Xinyi Line that will travel the congested Xinyi Road to Taipei 101 tower, the world’s tallest building. The system’s second phase of construction is expected to cost $13.8 billion when completed.

Main photo by Flickr (www.flickr.com) user dbdbrobot .

Thanks to D:F friend and reader Bob O’Brien for forwarding this story


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California’s Capitol Corridor Month Of May
Ridership, Surges 11% vs. 2007

From Internet Sources

SACRAMENTO ---“The May 2008 Capitol Corridor statistics from Amtrak are again an all-time record high, as are the stats on the state’s other two corridor services, with the San Joaquins taking a very big leap upward in ridership,” reports Capitol Corridor chief executive Eugene Skoropowski.

“There is no doubt that Californians have ‘discovered’ (rediscovered?) intercity trains as a real travel option (as noted in the front page Headline of the San Francisco Chronicle on Monday, June 2, 2008),” wrote Gene in a note to D:F and other infrastructure activists. “The price of gasoline is not hurting ridership, and many folks ‘are doing the math’ on the comparative costs of driving versus the train. The train is winning.”

Performance by Union Pacific has given the Capitol Corridor a better on-time performance than even Amtrak’s own premier Acela Express service on the Northeast Corridor (Acela Express was 83.8% on-time for May 2008, and 84.5% for 8 months YTD).

Here are the basic figures for the California Capitol Corridor (May 2008):

157,351 passengers +11.0% vs. 2007, another record for the month, and highest ridership month ever.

Passengers for 8 months YTD: 1,083,261 (8 months YTD: +13.2%)(total riders for the latest 12 months: 1,576,721)

$2,044,424 revenue +21.6% vs. 2007 (8 months YTD: +21.7%)

The farebox recovery revenue-to-cost ratio for May is 62.9%, and the year-to-date revenue-to-cost ratio is about 55%.

The on-time performance delivered to the riders for May was 90.7%, up considerably, with year-to-date on-time at 86.7%, second best in the nation. (Union Pacific performance in May was well over 92%, noted Skoropowksi, in crediting the freight railroad over whose track his trains run.

Pacific Surfliners (May 2008):
262,279 passengers +5.8% vs. 2007
Passengers for 8 months YTD: 1,790,658 (8 months YTD: +4.9%)
$4,346,269 revenue +6.2% vs. 2007 (8 months YTD: +6.1%)
On-time performance for May: 73.8%
YTD on-time: 77.6%

San Joaquins (May 2008):
91,923 passengers +21.2% vs. 2007 (8 months YTD: +12.6%)
Passengers for 8 months YTD: 580,474
$2,686,956 revenue +21.2% vs. 2007 (8 months YTD: +14.1%)
On-time performance for May: 81.4%
YTD on-time: 85.2%

Total California Intercity Corridor Ridership for May 2008: 511,553

Total Northeast Corridor ‘Spine’ ridership for May 2008: 970,773

For May 2008, California Corridors are 53% of Northeast Corridor Boston-Washington ridership

Total Northeast Corridor ridership for May 2008 with branches to Springfield, MA; Albany, NY and Harrisburg, PA: 1,189,368. For May 2008, California Corridors are 43% of the total Northeast Corridor ridership


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COMMUTER LINES... Commuter Lines...

MBTA Will Replace Bridge On Greenbush Line

T forced to rebuild 3-year-old bridge; Greenbush span not in compliance

By DF Staff from the Boston Globe and other Internet sources

JUNE 6 -- The MBTA will knock down and rebuild a three-year-old bridge in Scituate on the new Greenbush commuter line, adding $5.2 million to the cost of the overall project.

The first bridge did not meet state and federal environmental requirements because, in a big storm, it could push flood levels up another inch in the area, said Jim Eng, project manager for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.

Eng said it was not the contractor’s fault, because a thorough hydraulic analysis was not done ahead of time when the bridge was first built. A study of the potential flooding problems would have significantly delayed the project at the time. Now that the problems have been identified, the plans for the rebuilt bridge have been “engineered to death” to avoid flooding problems.

The MBTA’s board approved the new bridge during last Thursday’s monthly meeting. The Greenbush project, which was pegged last year at $513 million by T officials, is now budgeted at $532 million.

DF editor Molly McKay commented that, although half a billion is a significant “piece of change,” compared to costs of highway building, the taxpayers gets far more bang for the buck in the rail project. A single highway interchange with three levels of ramps costs AT LEAST half a billion dollars and that is with no mitigation.

Greenbush is a South Shore train line that was shut down in 1959 and reopened last October after 25 years of legal and neighborhood battles. At present, it is attracting about 2,000 round-trip passengers and is expected to draw as many as 4,300 commuters daily within three to five years.

A private consortium, Massachusetts Bay Railroad Company, has a contract with the MBTA to run the commuter service. That contract has been extended for three years despite complaints from passenger about summer delays on the rail.

The contract will increase penalties for late trains and add bonuses for each day that more than 98 percent of trains arrive no more than five minutes late.

One group of riders has only positive comments about the service: Boston College High School students who live on the South Shore are riding the Greenbush train to school in steadily increasing numbers. On any given weekday, in any car, teenagers with lacrosse sticks and backpacks can nearly outnumber the business people with briefcases and coffee cups. The train is much cheaper and faster than a school bus. BC High officials give their blessing to the arrangement. And students say it’s a much better ride.

“The bus is horrible,” said Liam Ross-Fitzgibbons of Scituate, a BC High junior. “It’s loud, it’s crowded, and you get to school too late.”

Chris Collins, a sophomore from Hingham, agreed. “The train beats the bus when it comes to time and personal space,” he said. “The only tricky part is getting to the train on time.”

One MBTA employee estimates that close to 100 students began riding the Greenbush line to BC High in the past year.

Former Massachusetts State Representative John Businger supports measures to make the Greenbush line a robust commuter service despite the extra cost of replacing the bridge in Scituate. “This service is a vital link to an integrated commuter rail service throughout the Boston area. It underscores once again the importance of building the North South Rail Link: more passengers will be entering South Station, which is already overcrowded. Commuters need the Greenbush line and the Rail Link in order to have ready access to destinations north and south and west of Boston which are served by rail.


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ENVIRONMENTALLINES... Environmental Lines...

CN Introduces Online Greenhouse Gas-Emissions Calculator

From Internet Sources

Canadian National Railway Company, a Class I railroad shipper, is offering shippers an online “green” calculator. Last week, CN announced it launched a greenhouse gas-emissions calculator at www.cn.ca/GHG_calculator.

Shippers will thus be able to estimate emissions savings when using CN vs. a truck after entering a shipment’s distance and weight.

“The new calculator is a powerful tool demonstrating the significant environmental and energy-saving benefits of using CN,” said Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing James Foote in a prepared statement.

Earlier this year, CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern Railway introduced online “carbon footprint” calculators.


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SAFETY LINES... Safety Lines...

TSB Report Says Faulty Wheels Could Derail Trains

From the Internet by CTV News Staff

JUNE 5 -- The Transportation Safety Board is ordering 12,000 wheel sets on cargo trains in the United States and Canada to be replaced. If the wheels stay on, say TSB officials, trains will continue running off the tracks. 18 derailments have already occurred because of the faulty wheels, they say.

A TSB report released on June 5 states that the wheel sets are “highly susceptibility to loosen.”

Photo: Rick Robinson
Canadian Pacific Railway
  

A CPR Potash train snakes its way through Alberta enroute to Vancouver is seen this undated photo.
Many of the 43,000 of suspect wheel sets that were made with the modified pressure-fit technique at the CNR Transcona shop in Winnipeg have already been removed from trains. However, some are still being used by Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR), CNR and other North American railroads, said the report.

“They had a tendency to loosen -- the wheel from the axle ... through the normal course of wear and tear,” Canadian National Railway (CNR) spokesperson Bryan Tucker told CTV News.

CNR Officials say the problem wheels are only used on freight trains. “It’s huge because it’s safety for our workers -- the men and women that are on the rail system. It’s important for our communities that they feel secure with the transportation of not just regular commodities, but also dangerous goods,” NDP Transportation Critic Brian Masse said.

Inspectors say the only way to identify a defective wheel is through visual inspection. That could potentially grind freight trains to a halt.

“The absence of a system to record and track wheel set components throughout their service life means that loose wheels will not always be identified and removed from service in a timely manner, thereby increasing the risk that derailments will continue to occur,” the report states.

Most wheels replaced, companies say

Communications officers at CPR and CNR said they were confident most of the wheels have already been removed from their trains.

CNR’s Bryan Taylor said most of the faulty wheel sets have long been replaced.

“We are comfortable in saying the vast majority are already off,” Tucker said. “We inspect all our wheels throughout the system both mechanically and, in this case, we did visual inspections car by car.”

The faulty wheel sets were first discovered while the board was investigating a CPR derailment that occurred in January 2006 near Buckskin, Ontario. A wheel became loose as the train was negotiating a curve, shifting inboard on its axel.

After the engine derailed, it continued moving forward until it hit a switch. That caused 11 more cars to go off the rails.

More than 18 kilometres of track were damaged.

No hazardous materials were spilled and no injuries resulted.


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STOCKS...  Selected Rail Stocks...

Source: www.MarketWatch.com

   This
Week
Previous
Week
Burlington Northern & Santa Fe(BNI)110.40113.05
Canadian National (CNI)52.3256.41
Canadian Pacific (CP)67.3773.16
CSX (CSX)65.4169.06
Florida East Coast (FLA)xxxxx62.51
Genessee & Wyoming (GWR)41.4340.82
Kansas City Southern (KSU)48.6749.96
Norfolk Southern (NSC)64.1867.38
Providence & Worcester (PWX)19.7120.75
Union Pacific (UNP)77.9582.31
Symbol FLA has no report.


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EVENTS... Events...

Frank Busalacchi
At The Downtown Harvard Club June 25

 

Association For Public Transportation Keynoter Is
‘States For Passenger Rail’ Chair Frank Busalacchi

BOSTON --- The Association for Public Transportation meets this June 25 at the downtown Harvard Club to hear from Wisconsin Transportation’s Frank Busalacchi, who also served as Vice Chairman of the recent Congressionally-created National Surface Transportation Policy Commission, speak on “Meeting the Transportation Challenges of the 21st Century – A Roadmap for America.”

“The economic prosperity and quality of life in our Megaregion depends upon an effective transportation network,” APT President Richard Arena noted in making the meeting announcement. “ At the APT Annual Meeting, [we can] find out how this critical resource can be improved and expanded.”

The 6:30 p.m. meeting on the 38th Floor of 1 Federal Street will also serve as a chance to “…network with transportation experts, planning professionals, political and business leaders, and take part in informative breakout sessions,” he said.

Secretary Busalacchi plays a leading role in national passenger rail issues. In 2005, he accepted the post as Chair of the States for Passenger Rail Coalition, an alliance of 23 State DOT’s calling for expanded federal support of intercity passenger rail. He has testified before Congress about the importance of passenger rail and high-speed rail services. Mr. Busalacchi is the former President (1991) of Teamsters Local 200 based in Milwaukee.

The Harvard Club at 1 Federal is accessible by MBTA lines reaching Downtown Crossing; parking in the building garage us also available for $7. For further conference details call APT Hot-line: 617.482.0282; e-mail: apt@car-free.com or go to: www.car-free.com

Roundtrip for two, anywhere on the Northeast Corridor from Boston to Washington, DC on Amtrak’s high-speed Acela, will be raffled at the meeting. (Winner need not be present to win). Individual & corporate sponsorships for the meeting are still available.


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Tri-State’s 2008 Garden State Gala
On June 24!

Please Join Us!

The Tri-State Transportation Campaign’s annual New Jersey fundraiser is drawing closer and invitations have been mailed — please join us on June 24 between 6 and 8 pm at this year’s Garden State Gala! The event will take place at Mompou Tapas Bar in Newark’s Ironbound neighborhood (77 Ferry St., three blocks from Newark Penn Station).

This year’s Garden State Gala will celebrate the Access to the Region’s Core rail tunnel, which will double commuter rail capacity between New York Penn Station and Secaucus Junction, allowing for more frequent peak-hour service and providing one-seat rides into NYC for riders of several NJ Transit lines who do not currently have them. Port Authority first deputy executive director Susan Bass Levin and NJ Transit executive director Richard Sarles will speak.

For package and sponsorship information, or to purchase tickets online, please see information at http://www.tstc.org/


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“Picture our Train”
Calendar Contest
in Full Swing

From Amtrak

Now is the time to enter the “Picture our Train” 2009Wall Calendar Photo Contest.The contest, which began on May 12, is an annual opportunity for employees and train buffs to submit a favorite photo of an Amtrak train to be featured on next year’s calendar.

The contest review panels are looking for the best original color photographs featuring a train with the current Amtrak logo and livery visible, including Amtrak California trains, Amtrak Cascades®, Pacific Surfliner® and Acela Express trains. Last year’s winning entry, a Coast Starlight train passing the majestic Mt. Shasta in Northern California, was submitted by Richard J.Allen, a retired police officer from Cortland, N.Y.

All entries must be an 8 x 10 original color photo suitable for enlargement up to 25 inches.

The grand prize winner will receive a $1,000 travel voucher and a photo credit on the calendar. Secondthrough fifth-place contestants will receive travel vouchers as well, ranging from $100 to $500. The contest ends July 11.

Contestants are reminded to stay away from tracks and railroad rights-of-way and remain in public access areas.The official rules are posted on Amtrak.com/photocontest.


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OPINION... Opinion...

The Environmental Movement Needs
Adrenalin “Shot”: Peirce Interviewee

WASHINGTON --- “At thirty-plus years of age, the environmental movement is spinning its wheels, awash in good proposals it can’t get passed.  It’s focused on litigation and playing within the system instead of moving courageously to build broad, potent political alliances that might have the breadth and the moxie to save a dangerously imperiled planet,” writes noted Washington Post Writers Group   columnist Neal Peirce this week in his national column.

“The allegation isn’t mine,” says Peirce; “it comes instead from James Gustave ‘Gus’ Speth, a man whose life record makes him the epitome of mainstream environmentalism -- chairman of the President’s Council on Environmental Quality during the Carter administration, founder of the Natural Resources Defense Council and the World Resources Institute, and Dean of Environmental Studies at Yale.

“Mainstream environmentalism, Speth notes, has had its successes. Building on the landmark statutes it pushed through in the early 1970s, air quality has improved, water is cleaner, and dangerous toxic emissions have been curbed. But a nation fully protected?  Hardly.  Just check the record, suggests Speth in his new book, “The Bridge at the End of the World” (Yale University Press).  A third of our rivers and half our lakes are too polluted to meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s basic standard.  Thirty-seven percent of estuaries are in “poor” condition. Beach closings have reached all-time highs. Two-thirds of Americans live in counties that register pollution levels over EPA’s fairly basic standard.”

“Wilderness areas have been set aside.  But since 1982, we Americans have also paved or built on 35 million once-rural acres, the size of New York State.  Since the 1970s, our miles of paved roads are up 53 percent, vehicle miles traveled up 177 percent,” notes the column.

For the full column check your local newspaper or email: peircecolumns@citistates.com.


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A Suggestion For Boston Service On Amtrak
During The New London Bridge Replacement

By: David Peter Alan

The New London Bridge may not be falling down quite yet, but Amtrak will replace it during a four-day work blitz June 14-17 inclusive. Unfortunately, Amtrak has announced that riders who want to go beyond New Haven to Boston and intermediate points will have to fend for themselves from that Friday to Monday. In effect, Amtrak has told riders on a significant part of its busiest line to go take a hike (in some cases, literally).

Rail advocates complain and politicians dither, but these actions do not solve the problem of getting people to or from Boston (or Providence or New London) during the period in question any more than Amtrak’s short-sighted act of throwing up its corporate hands.

All Amtrak offers is a single train leaving Boston at 11:40 a.m. and New York at 3:00 p.m., running via Springfield. The proposed running time is two hours longer than the running time for conventional (not Acela) trains between the two cities. This option is not offered at all on June 14th, which would have the infamous distinction of being the day when no trains run between the big Apple and the Big Bean. Both Amtrak and the riding public deserve better.

There is no need for me to repeat the litany of negative impacts on the riding public. Jim RePass already did so in the Hartford Courant and last week’s edition of D:F. What he did not mention is the potentially even more negative effect on Amtrak.

Amtrak has placed itself into a no-win situation by announcing the suspension of essentially all rail service between Boston and New Haven (and south) for four days. If Amtrak is as necessary to the nation’s (and especially the Northeast Region’s) transportation picture as it claims to be, its decision to suspend service on such a vital and heavily-traveled route appears reckless and indifferent to the public interest. If the suspension is implemented and people still manage to get to their destinations without Amtrak, Amtrak’s enemies will gain a significant measure of credibility when they say that Amtrak is not as necessary as it claims to be (and rail advocates like me say it is). If Amtrak is to emerge from this situation looking concerned and competent, it has no alternative but to deliver the riding public to their destinations as efficiently as possible.

Unfortunately, little of the debate over this issue has focused on a solution. As a frequent rail rider, including many trips between the New York area and Boston, I offer one now. I know my idea may be controversial, even among rail advocates. I also know that time is short, since any plan to provide service on the days in question must be implemented immediately. I also know some of the senior operations managers at Amtrak, and I know that they have the competence to implement a service plan, whether or not it is the exact one that I propose here.

I first suggest dividing the route between New York and Boston into three segments; New London and south, New London to Mystic, and Mystic northeast to Boston. The bridge to be replaced lies east of the New London station, so the minimum segment over which trains cannot be operated is New London to Mystic. To maximize the portion of the journey traveled on rails and minimize the “bus bridge” part of the trip, it makes sense to take riders on a bus for only the nine-mile segment between those two stations. Given the short length of the busing segment and Amtrak’s counts of how many riders to expect for each train, it should not be difficult to charter enough buses to bridge the two rail segments.

Concerning service south and west of New London, the operational problem is that there is no place to turn a train, and Amtrak does not operate push-pull equipment. Acela trains are double-ended, however, and Amtrak should have enough motive power available to place a locomotive on the “hind end” of each affected train to pull it from New London toward New Haven and beyond. If Amtrak does not have enough locomotives available, freight units can be rented and used to pull the train, while the regularly-assigned engines provide hotel power for the coaches.

Between Mystic and Boston, there are two possibilities. One is to use the same arrangement on the Boston end of the trip. The other is to lease push-pull train sets from the MBTA, which use them regularly for commuter service in the Boston area. It should not be difficult to find push-pull sets for week-end use, since most commuter equipment is idle on week-ends. Peak-hour equipment use on Monday and Tuesday is a consideration, but much commuter equipment is idle during the mid-day, and only a few Amtrak trains operate to or from Boston during peak hours. In the morning, only one train (#66) arrives in Boston and four leave there (#2153, #95, #2155 and #171). During the afternoon/evening peak, only two trains arrive in Boston (#174 and #2162) and three trains leave there (#2173, #2193 and #177). The “T” should have a few train sets available for Amtrak to lease for the few days at issue. If the “T” can’t supply enough push-pull train sets, there should be some available from Metro-North or New Jersey Transit.

Under the plan I propose, the trip will not be as easy or convenient for riders as it would be under normal operation. If the operation is handled smoothly, however the trip should not take more than 30 to 60 minutes longer than conventional “Northeast Regional” trains. The delay would be longer, compared to Acela trains, and it may be necessary to combine a few runs that are scheduled closely together. Acela riders would lose some time, compared to their normal schedule. Still, the situation is temporary and everyone would be able to get to their destination. Amtrak will have also fulfilled its mission of taking the riding public where they want to go.

I am aware that time is short, but Amtrak has an obligation to make a best effort to serve the riding public. This includes people who might want to go to or leave Boston (or other places east of New Haven) on June 14th, 15th, 16th or 17th. The debate thus far has featured many complaints and few ideas to solve the problem. If Amtrak decides to implement service, whether or not they use the plan I suggest, I have every confidence that they can achieve that goal.

I urge Amtrak to provide this service. Failure to do so could severely damage Amtrak’s reputation at a time when Amtrak needs the support of the riding public and the elected officials who have so much to say about Amtrak’s financial future. I urge our elected leaders to impress upon Amtrak the need to serve the public during the four days in question and, and I urge them to work with Amtrak toward implementing a solution. I also urge my colleagues in the rail advocacy movement to do the same, whether or not they believe my proposal is the optimal one.

If anyone else has a better idea, this is the time to speak. The deadline is coming very soon. I am prepared to make whatever other suggestions I can to keep the trains running on the days at issue. Amtrak managers know where to find me. For my own part, I plan to spend the four days in question in New Jersey or New York City, within the service area of New Jersey Transit. At least I can be one less rider who will need to be accommodated.

David Peter Alan is a rail activist and a contributor to Destination:Freedom


All Images File: NCI

At left, the existing Thames River bascule bridge will be replaced in just one week. The remaining graphic renderings of the new Thames River Bridge show the lift span lowered (center) for rail traffic and raised (right) to allow marine traffic to pass underneath.


Late Note from the Webmaster

According to a late article appearing in The Day (Connecticut) newspaper (www.theday.com), all Acela Express service will be canceled between Boston and New York.

Further, that all Regional trains operating between Boston and New Haven (by way of Providence, RI) will be canceled, while some Regional trains will be canceled between New Haven and New York.

From Sunday June 15 through Tuesday June 17, Amtrak will add a train that will operate northbound and southbound between Washington, New Haven, Springfield, Boston and intermediate stations. Existing, service between New Haven and Springfield will not be affected.

On Wednesday June 18 only, Regional Trains 95 and 171 will be canceled between Boston and New Haven.

Additional details will have to be obtained from Amtrak (www.amtrak.com)

The article offered the following additional bus travel options:

Greyhound Lines
1-800-231-2222
www.greyhound.com
Peter Pan Bus Lines
1-800-343-9999
www.peterpanbus.com
Shore Line East
1-800-ALL-RIDE (in Connecticut)
203-777-7433 (outside of Connecticut)
www.shorelineeast.com
MBTA
1-800-392-6100
www.mbta.com

While MBTA commuter service in Massachusetts will not be seriously impacted by this outage, the planned maintenance blitz during the 4-day period will have an effect on some stations within the MBTA service area along the Northeast Corridor.

The MBTA commuter rail stations at Ruggles, Hyde Park, Readville, and Canton Junction will see some closures and diversions in order for trains to get around maintenance areas and equipment. Specific work includes at least one switch removal in Canton and replacement of thousands of railroad ties.

People normally traveling through Hyde Park Station will have to use Readville station on select days or use parallel bus service along Hyde Park Avenue, making connections with the Orange Line subway at Forest Hills.

No trains will stop at Ruggles Station from June 14 through 17. People will have to make alternative arrangements using the Orange Line subway at Back Bay or Red Line subway at South Station.

Some trains passing through Canton Junction will board on different platforms while work is done to remove an unused siding switch.

Riders on the Needham branch may see some delays due to the ongoing maintenance window.

Riders should contact the MBTA for specifics or read service details at www.mbta.com.


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END NOTES...  Publication Notes...

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