The National Corridors Initiative, Inc.

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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December 8, 2008
Vol. 9 No. 51

Copyright © 2008
NCI Inc., All Rights Reserved

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

  News Items…
Obama Pledges Massive Public Works
Connecticut Appears To Back Off Major NH-Springfield Rail Project
  Economic Lines…
Cutbacks Of Vermont Amtrak Service Considered
  Selected Rail Stocks…
  Freight Lines…
Railroad And Intermodal Shipping: Lowest Monthly Declines
   In Traffic Totals Since 1997
  Safety Lines…
SEPTA Upgrades Safety On Trolley Line
  Off The Main Line…
An Airport Respite by the Square Foot
Strong Private Practice
A Plan To Save One Or More Of The ‘Big Three:’
   Build A Different Kind Of Car.
In Search Of The One-Seat Ride?
   Now, The No-Seat Ride.
The Need For Speed! - Regional Transportation Forum In New London
  Webmaster Notes…
  Publication Notes …

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

Obama Pledges Massive Public Works

From Internet Sources

WASHINGTON, DECEMBER 6 — Early Saturday morning, the New York Times online reported that President-elect Barack Obama has committed to the largest public works building program since the creation of the interstate highway system a half century ago.

“We need action — and action now,” he said.

Reports about drastic numbers of job losses, 533,000 jobs just in November bringing the total for the past year to almost 2 million, have ratcheted up the pressure on Obama to take more of a leadership role in the crisis right away and not wait for the inauguration several weeks from now.

“Mr. Obama and his team are working with Congressional leaders to fashion a spending package that could invest hundreds of billions of dollars into the economy. A big part of that would be infrastructure projects such as building or repairing roads, bridges, schools, sewer systems and other public utilities. Democrats hope the new Congress that takes office in early January could pass such a measure in time for Mr. Obama to sign almost instantly after taking office Jan. 20.”

Besides public works construction, the president-elect wants to fund programs that make government buildings more energy efficient, modernize school classrooms and libraries with computers, expand access to broadband Internet service and upgrade information technology in hospitals and doctors’ offices.

The big ticket will be the public works spending. “We will create millions of jobs by making the single largest new investment in our national infrastructure since the creation of the federal highway system in the 1950s,” Mr. Obama said.

At the National Governors Conference this past week, governors told Obama the states had $136 billion worth of already-approved road, bridge and other projects ready to go. Each billion dollars spent would create 40,000 jobs, they estimated.

Obama invoked the federal interstate program of 1956 as an example of what government can do to create jobs and revitalize the economy. The program ultimately resulted in the construction of 42,795 miles of roads and cost a total of $129.9 billion, of which the federal government bore $114.3 billion.

Obama said the states must act quickly, but he indicated that rules must be set to ensure that the money is spent responsibly. “We won’t do it the old Washington way,” Mr. Obama said. “We won’t just throw money at the problem. We’ll measure progress by the reforms we make and the results we achieve — by the jobs we create, by the energy we save, by whether America is more competitive in the world.”

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State Assistant Majority Leader McCluskey Blasts Delay


Connecticut Appears To Back Off
Major NH-Springfield Rail Project

By DF Staff and Internet Sources

HARTFORD --- State Representative David McCluskey (D - West Hartford), House Chair of the Connecticut Transportation Bonding Sub-Committee and a longtime Transportation Committee member, reacted sharply to published remarks from a Department of Transportation (DOT) representative that the earliest commuters could ride the proposed New Haven-Springfield commuter rail service is “optimistically, 2015-16.”

Rep. McCluskey said: “DOT just doesn’t get it. Connecticut residents want alternatives to cars now. The New Haven to Springfield commuter rail service would operate on an existing active rail line. This idea has been languishing since the early 1990s,” Rep. McCluskey added. “The fact that DOT cannot figure out how to add this service quickly demonstrates their lack of interest and seriousness about providing public transportation to Connecticut residents.”

Rep. McCluskey has been a leading voice for pubic transportation in Connecticut and the region since his election to office.

“This service could be up and running as early as next year if the DOT actually wanted to do it. New Haven to Springfield commuter rail service makes sense on so many levels – for economic development, for energy policy, for smart growth, and for a greener environment,” said Rep. McCluskey

“This project should be one of the ‘Shovel Ready’ projects that Connecticut presents to the incoming Obama Administration. I urge Governor Rell to put DOT’s collective feet to the fire and get this project moving,” said McCluskey.

A press conference to protest ConnDOT’s lack of progress on this urgently needed project that would bring more frequent public rail transit to New Haven, Hartford, and Springfield, as well as the towns and cities in between, has been scheduled for Tuesday, December 9th in Room 2C of the Legislative Office Building on the New Haven-Springfield Commuter Rail project, sponsored by ConnPIRG and the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, and other advocacy groups such as the National Corridors Initiative.

The New Haven Register report that prompted Rep. McCluskey’s comments read in part:

“Sometime in the next decade, you may be able to get on a train in Madison or Milford to go to Bradley International Airport. That’s one of the conveniences envisioned by the state Department of Transportation with a proposed commuter rail line connecting New Haven, Hartford and Springfield, Mass,” the Register wrote.

“Including the connecting bus services, riders would be able to take mass transit to numerous points throughout the state, including the airport. The DOT’s consultant, Wilbur Smith Associates, laid out the preliminary plans for the rail line for about 30 leaders of numerous state and federal agencies, regional planners and transportation services Tuesday at Union Station,” the Register said.

The state is in the midst of its environmental assessment and will hold public hearings over the next two weeks in Springfield, Hartford, Windsor and North Haven. The last of this round will be held at 6 p.m. Dec. 16 at North Haven Memorial Library, 17 Elm Street, reported the Register.

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ECONOMIC LINES... Economic Lines...

Cutbacks Of Vermont Amtrak Service Considered

DF Staff From Burlingtonfreepress.Com And Other Internet Sources

Photo: Free Press 

Amtrak trains in Vermont may be cut back. Passengers boad an Amtrak train in Essex Junction in November 2006.
MONTPELIER, VT, DECEMBER 4 -- Despite increasing ridership, the economic crisis is forcing the state of Vermont to consider cutting back or eliminating the state's two Amtrak passenger train routes, Agency of Transportation spokesman John Zicconi said last week, “[The situation] causes us to take a look at what our priorities are and how we spend our money, and Amtrak service is certainly part of the discussion.”

Each year the state provides a nearly $5 million subsidy to operate Amtrak’s two Vermont lines: The Vermonter, which runs from St. Albans to Washington, D.C. and the Ethan Allen Express, which travels from Rutland to New York City.

In 2007, ridership increased by 17 % on these two lines.

At least $21 million needs to be cut from the transportation budget, Zicconi said. And that number could be several million dollars higher in a month.

Several scenarios of cutbacks are being considered, including eliminating one of the two lines or shortening The Vermonter’s route. The shortened route would eliminate service from St. Albans to White River Junction, cutting out stops in Essex Junction, Waterbury, Montpelier and Randolph in the process.

Zicconi did not immediately know the extent of the governor’s authority to curtail Amtrak service. It’s possible no cuts can be made without legislative approval.

“We don’t want to cut Amtrak because the service is growing and it’s a time when people are looking to get out of their single-occupancy vehicle, but with the budget where it is, it has to be on the table,” Zicconi said.

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STOCKS...  Selected Rail Stocks...


Burlington Northern & Santa Fe(BNI)74.6876.61
Canadian National (CNI)34.0235.22
Canadian Pacific (CP)30.8432.20
CSX (CSX)34.1537.24
Florida East Coast (FLA)62.5162.51
Genessee & Wyoming (GWR)29.5430.38
Kansas City Southern (KSU)18.8121.92
Norfolk Southern (NSC)46.1449.47
Providence & Worcester (PWX)10.0011.20
Union Pacific (UNP)47.4950.04

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FREIGHT LINES... Freight Lines...

Railroad And Intermodal Shipping:
Lowest Monthly Declines In
Traffic Totals Since 1997

Logistics Management: Jeff Berman, Group News Editor

WASHINGTON, DECEMBER 5 —Freight rail, which had surged in the last two years when fuel prices kept rising, has seen a marked slowdown during this period of global economic crisis. When the Association of American Railroad (AAR) released their figures on volumes for all modes in November, carload and intermodal traffic totals showed their largest monthly declines since AAR began keeping track of monthly traffic in 1997.

In November, U.S. railroads originated 1,189,472 carloads of freight, which was down a record-high 10.1 percent—or 133,504 carloads—from November 2007. Intermodal loadings at 851,517 were off by 7.9 percent—or 72,978 trailers and containers for the month.  

Looking at rail shipment volumes by commodity, only two groups—coal and “all others”—were up year over year, with coal up 2.1 percent or 12,271 carloads and “all others” up 23.1 percent or 3,949 carloads.

On the other end, motor vehicles and equipment were down 32.7 percent or 25,984 carloads; chemicals, down 16.3 percent or 19,621 carloads; and metals and metal products, down 39.6 percent or 19,181 carloads, among others.

On a year-to-date basis—for the first 11 months of 2008—the AAR said that U.S. rail carloads were down 1.4 percent—or 212,665 carloads—to 15,505,899 carloads. And intermodal traffic, which is not included in carload figures, was down 3.5 percent—or 385,068 trailers and containers—to 10,773,647.

“These numbers certainly reflect the slowdown in the economy,” said AAR Director of Editorial Services Tom White.

White said it was too early to tell if these monthly figures represented the “bottoming out” of rail traffic volumes. Up until October, he said, certain commodities were doing fairly well. But in recent weeks, the commodity totals in general have turned south very quickly.

Noel Perry, partner with FTR Associates and founder of Transport Consultants, commented on a recent Stifel Nicolaus conference call that railroads are more than likely to see further volume declines in the high-single digit range, which are similar to declines that have occurred over recent weeks. Perry added that rail pricing is likely to hold up, because many rail shippers do not have an alternative, with his estimate of roughly 70 percent of rail carload shippers captive to just one railroad.

The AAR said that total volume for the first 11 months of the year was estimated at 1.62 million miles, which was off 0.3 percent from the first 11 months of 2007.

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SAFETY LINES... Safety Lines...

SEPTA Upgrades Safety On Trolley Line

DF Staff From Delaware County Daily Times On The Internet

ROSEMONT, PA, DECEMBER 5 — A young man is accidentally killed. He might have been at fault, or unnecessarily foolish, but whatever the reason, the tragedy leads to changes for the better.

On May 26, 2007, 19-year-old Brian Breskman, while taking a shortcut near the Route 100 trolley line, stumbled and fell against the line’s deadly third rail, electrocuting himself.

At the urging of Brian’s father, Ben Breskman, SEPTA officials are ramping up safety features on the line; high-voltage warning decals have been placed about 50 feet apart along third-rail covers near stations. The decals will eventually span the entire track, replacing similar ones which have faded over time, said Scott Sauer, SEPTA’s Manager of Operational Safety.

Also, SEPTA has installed chains and no trespassing signs across stairways leading to track areas intended for SEPTA workers only. These stairways were previously unmarked and open.

Sauer added that safety personnel are assessing each station for other weaknesses with regard to trespassing.

“We’re going to look for improvements, depending on what we find. We’re looking for areas where a person might opt to cross the tracks rather than use designated walkways. We don’t want to give them the option.”

Officials may opt to post signs with universal symbols, such as lightning bolts, to indicate danger of electrocution. Current signage warns that trespassing is not permitted.

Since his son’s death, Breskman has mounted a campaign to improve safety on the Route 100 line, giving presentations to the public and engaging local officials on signage and access issues, noting the trolley line’s proximity to schools and growing neighborhoods.

Technological measures for safety:

Breskman said he would like to see SEPTA investigate a more progressive approach to powering the high-speed trolleys, called limit-switch technology.

Currently used in Europe, this technology electrifies sections of track only as needed to support trains, thereby eliminating the need for constant electrification. Breskman said it also reduces energy consumption and saves money.

Officials are skeptical. Jim Jordan, assistant manager for SEPTA’s Public Safety Dept., said, “It’s a great concept, but we don’t know if it’s feasible.”

Breskman has offered to research the topic and consult with SEPTA in the future.

Safety record:

According to information from the Federal Railroad Administration Office of Safety Analysis, SEPTA sustained 452 total accidents/incidents in 2007, with two fatalities.

SEPTA officials said the Route 100 line had two fatalities in the past 10 years, with Brian the only electrocution. Getting struck by trains is the greater danger.

“It’s a nationwide problem,” said Jordan, noting that rail trespassing accidents most often involve young males impaired by alcohol or drugs.

Brian was under the influence of alcohol when he was electrocuted, about 100 yards east of the Rosemont station. Breskman refers to this unfortunate confluence of circumstances as “the perfect storm.”

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OFF THE MAIN LINE... Off The Main Line...

An Airport Respite by the Square Foot

From Boston Globe on the Internet

LONDON, DECEMBER 7 --- Boston staffer Jenn Abelson describes her discovery of a welcome “respite” available at Heathrow Airport:

“Sick of airports and with five hours to kill before my flight back to Boston, I desperately wanted refuge from the chaos and commercialism at London Heathrow.”

Globe Photo

What she found was a room of her own in the terminal, a little “cabin” called Yotel, where travelers can stay for as little as four hours for about $40.

“Yotel offers frenzied travelers a place to shower, nap, or relax. Since debuting at London’s Gatwick Airport last year, Yotel opened sites at Heathrow and Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport.

“Yotel has three types of rooms, each equipped with a bed, bathroom, flat-panel TV, and free Internet. The spaces are sufficient but tiny,” write Abelson. “Claustrophobics beware: Standard cabins are about 70 square feet and premium and twin cabins with bunk beds are just over 100 square feet.”

Check-in is easy at ATM-like kiosks which issue a cabin key card and a receipt with a Wi-Fi access code. A call button is available to alert a cabin crew member if there is a problem.

Customers can order food from a cabin service menu or bring their own.

“I had brought my own spread of baguette, Stilton cheese, and olives from Harrods department store. But when I looked for a table - which is supposed to fold down from the wall - I found a sign saying it was being repaired. Apparently, the original tables were too heavy and broke off the wall.”

In the guestbook, Yotel says it supplies the crew with specially designed New Balance sneakers so they can hurry to meet guests’ needs. When Abelson ordered a beer, “A Yotel employee was instantly on the other end of the intercom system and a Grolsch lager arrived in less than two minutes.”

But not all the amenities are ideal: “For all the touches of luxury (organic mattresses, lilac pillows, beds with iPod attachments),” writes Abelson, “Yotel came up short on other basics. The Wi-Fi didn’t work and the promised 60 cable channels turned out to be 23.” Movies are available for $9 each and a wake-up alarm will help get you to your next flight on time.

Yotel, which receives investment support from Kuwait-based IFA Hotels & Resorts, says it is looking to expand to other big airports, including in the United States. The company is looking to extend the Yotel concept to city centers where space is at a premium. There is no maximum stay but Yotel recommends that no more than two adults stay in a cabin (not that you’d want to cram more than two into 70 square feet).

“Yotel’s chief executive, Gerard Greene, describes it as the “iPod of the hotel industry.” Sleek and compact it is, though not a room you linger in for days. There are no closets, only a full-length mirror and one coat hanger. But for harried travelers facing delays, cancellations, and layovers, Yotel offers a rarity: peace and quiet in the middle of an airport.”

Jenn Abelson can be reached at

© Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

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OPINION... Opinion...

Strong Private Practice


DECEMBER 6 -- An editorial entitled “Strong Private Practice” by the Boston Herald, is supportive of privatization of the Mass Pike, but reveals serious concerns about details of the deal.


“It’s good that the idea of privatizing the Massachusetts Turnpike, as the city of Chicago and state of Indiana have done with a couple of their toll roads, is on the legislative radar screen. Our lawmakers are not totally brain-dead.”

But the Herald points out that “Chicago and Indiana are dreadful examples, according to a new analysis for the Pioneer Institute.”

In those cases, the selection of the private owner was based on who offered the largest upfront payment, but the negotiated contracts left “a mind-blowing range of possibilities for future tolls: for example, from $2 in Chicago to anywhere from $28 to $1,800!” This is not a transparent public-private partnership that serves the public.

One way to deliver a more fair arrangement would be to “contract with a private operator to design, build, operate and maintain infrastructure for a fixed term. Among other things, this forces early consideration of costs.” This was pointed out by the author of the Mass Pike analysis, construction lawyer John B. Miller. “Successful examples,” he said, “would include the 1997 bridge to Prince Edward Island, where competition for the contract was vigorous.”

“In Massachusetts,” the editorial continues, “the Pacheco Law makes such contracting prohibitively difficult and would have to be amended. But the benefits for public infrastructure in energy, waste disposal, recreation, building construction and transportation could be great.”

[Editor’s note: the Pacheco Law, enacted in 1993, virtually prohibits the state from contracting out to the private sector. It exists only in Massachusetts.]

“History should confirm to public officials that public sector resources have never been and never will be sufficient to provide for all infrastructure needs,” wrote Miller. A truth to be recognized.

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OP-ED... Op-Ed...

A Plan To Save One Or More Of The ‘Big Three:’
Build A Different Kind Of Car.

By Df Reader Daniel Carleton

Bailout or bankruptcy? Free market or federalization? First the financial institutions and now the country’s indigenous automobile and truck manufacturers are seeking some sort of financial assistance to remedy decades of bad decision making. Despite the precarious position of the money changers it should be noted they do not make tangible assets, they make possible the manufacture of tangible assets through credit and capital. That source of credit and capital does not necessarily need to come from a bank. The auto makers do make tangible assets which individuals manufacture, buy and drive. As industrial manufacturing has waned during the past decades so too have the number of experienced crafts-persons.

There are no easy solutions to cure the auto manufacturing industry and stifle industrial malaise. And throwing money at an industry with a bad business plan seems counterintuitive. There may be a way of preserving some of the industrial knowledge base while also charting a course for America’s transportation future: retool part of the auto industry to manufacture passenger railcars.

This is not a new idea. On his weekly blog, suburban nihilist James Howard Kunstler has suggested this very thing a few times. To the railroader this notion is something between an anathema and dichotomy. It was the overabundance of the automobile (and cheap gasoline) which led to the austerity of the passenger train. Since then the car manufacturers have become very good customers of the freight railroads (shipping raw materials, parts and the finished product) but not suppliers. The differences between a passenger automobile and a passenger railcar seem as broad as the actual difference in their relative sizes; it’s about the same ratio as a person to an empty aluminum can.

The vast majority of passenger rolling stock now used in this country is fabricated from stainless steel whereas the last well known stainless steel car was the DeLorean of Back to the Future fame. Cars are made on an assembly line at a rate one per minute (or so my third grade class was told during a class trip to the Ford plant in Mahwah, NJ). Railcars are fabricated in large indoor bays at a rate of one to two a week and are more akin to large scale custom made industrial hardware such as power plant generators and transformers. Despite these deltas in the finished product, the resources expended leading to manufacture is quite similar.

The auto makers are used to dealing with steel suppliers so procuring stainless steel instead of carbon steel shouldn’t be a difficult transition. Many parts of a railcar are manufactured by outside vendors such as the wheel assemblies (known as trucks), couplers, brake equipment and glazing. The car makers have similar contracts with suppliers so, again, this is not new territory. Automobile and railcar design is a maze of federal regulations. Both also require stringent Quality Assurance and Quality Control during manufacture. It is during the actual manufacturing process where the assembly line becomes useless. Here the auto maker may have to partner with an existing large scale fabricator for guidance. A new facility may need to be built or an existing plant may be gutted and retrofitted.

The earnings of such a new venture may be slim compared to the past. Reportedly, an order for commuter railcars to a local agency is costing around $530 million. This is a paltry sum when compared to the glory days of the big three auto makers. Still, it is better than nothing and the rail revolution is just getting started. Our most recent political gyration was steeped in the ethos of “change.” Auto makers investing in the design, production and maintenance of mass transportation would be the epitome of the word “change.”

Daniel Carleton
Cortlandt Manor, NY

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In Search Of the One-Seat Ride?
Now, The No-Seat Ride.

By Dennis Kirkpatrick
NCI Webmaster

It would seem that the Holy Grail for most rail riders is the so-called ‘one-seat ride’ meaning you get to your destination on one train – one-seat – without having to make numerous changes to multiple transit systems. It may be that ‘one-seat’ is becoming an endangered species.

As with most transit systems nationwide, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) based in Boston, MA has found the current cost of fuel and other economic pressures are driving up its ridership. For several months, the MBTA as well as many other systems across the USA have been recording record ridership.

How then to add capacity to meet the demand?

It seems the MBTA will be addressing this by getting more riders into each car. Starting Monday December 8, 2008, a test trainset will be added to Boston’s high-volume Red Line Subway. The test train, a 2-car matched set, will have no seats. The coaches have been modified at the MBTA’s Cabot shops to remove all seating except a couple that will be labeled reserved for the elderly and handicapped. Extra straps will be added allowing standers to have more places to hold on, and in place of the seating that was removed, a new waist-level bar has been installed to allow more places for standing riders to hold on.

The test set will only run during the busy morning and afternoon rush hour periods when ridership is at its peak, and will be limited to just 2-cars in a 6-car train set. The trainset will be retired to the storage yards in non-peak hours.

Also to be included will be a suggestion box where rider comments can be dropped off. I can only imagine what some of the responses will be.

At the same time, the MBTA finds itself between a rock and hard place. Many other transit systems are already using no-seat trainsets to deal with capacity. One might suggest that adding more cars or more trains would be better. I’m sure we all wish it were so.

However, the MBTA is just now completing a multi-year major modification to its transit system to accommodate 6-car trainsets (beyond its previous 4-car standard). Several of its lines have accommodated 6-car trainsets for some time now, but the Blue Line is still in final stages of platform extensions. In some locations these extensions have not been easy due to nearby building foundations and existing underground utilities. At least one station on the Blue Line, Bowdoin Square at the Blue Line’s downtown Boston terminus, will close because it cannot be extended. Nearby Government Center Station will take over as the end of the line with Bowdoin serving only to loop trains.

As to adding more trains, the MBTA is already looking at rolling stock shortages due to maintenance needs of its aging fleet, or capacity in places where branch lines merge into the central subway system. Adding more people per coach is pretty much all that is left.

However, is it worth it?

By their own estimations, the MBTA will only be adding an approximate 27 more people per car or 54 people per trainset. The question will be whether the test operation will be seen by the public in a favorable light before this solution is applied to its other subway lines.

After the 9-11 crisis we saw the nation’s airlines bailed out of their financial shortfalls because they were closed for several days. Of course they were already in a financial bind so it didn’t take much to tip them over the edge. We now see the nation’s automobile manufacturers lined up for a hand out to stay operational. How much longer must rail be ignored?

After 9-11 it was the nation’s transit lines and railroads that we depended on to get us rolling again, and as gasoline and diesel prices rose we started using the rail systems to get us places in a cost-effective manner. It was like rail was the good old dependable friend that you could always count on in a bind.

Well, your old friend “rail” is also in a bind and needs a handout as well, especially when you start to see that the only the solution left is to hollow out coaches to add more people. What next? Door guards to push more people on as we see in some foreign nations? Cattle cars are unbecoming to the human species.

If we do not start making immediate improvements to a long neglected infrastructure which includes rights-of-way as well as rolling stock, rail could roll itself to a standstill.

The incoming administration in Washington is planning many public works projects to get the nation kick-started again.

Rail should, indeed must, be a part of that overall project base.

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EVENTS... Events...  

We need you at. . .
The Need For Speed!


A Regional Transportation Forum presented by
The Sierra Club New England Transportation Committee
The National Corridors Initiative

Friday, January 9, 2009, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
The Radisson Hotel, Governor Winthrop Boulevard, New London, CT


Let’s Get Going On Better Rail NYC to Boston and Beyond!

You’ll here from. . .

  • CT Asst. Maj. Leader David McCluskey
  • United States Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT)
  • NCI President Jim RePass
  • RI Lt. Governor Liz Roberts (invited)
  • North-South Rail Link Chair John Businger
  • CT State Senate President Don Williams (invited)
  • Connecticut Department of Transportation
  • Shore Line East Admin. Peter Richter
  • CT Transit’s Karen Burnaska
  • TrainRiders NE President Wayne Davis
To talk about. . .

  • Expanded Shore Line East Service
  • Commuter Rail New London - Worcester
  • Extending RI commuter service to Kingston
  • New Haven/Hartford/Springfield commuter service and beyond
  • The North/South Rail Link
  • Connecting North and South Stations
  • Creating a new Regionwide rail system
  • The Downeaster: Connecting Southern and
              Northern New England by Rail

  • ... and more

RSVP: Molly McKay   (860) 536-5480

This is a public information forum which will focus on what rail and transit projects in the Northeast are the “low-hanging-fruit,” and how we can move them forward now. We will explore how highways and rail are funded and how the current system has crippled transportation in America. There is opportunity NOW with a stimulus package being put together in Washington to demand action from our delegation by using that funding to improve and expand rail and transit systems.

To register mail a check payable to:
National Corridors Initiative c/o Molly McKay, 8 Riverbend Drive Mystic, CT 06355

Or email or fax credit card information to:, fax: 860-536-5482,
and listing: Type of Card (VISA, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express), Name on Card,
Card Number, Expiration Date plus your mailing address, street, city or town, zip code.

Travelers’ Note: this hotel is within easy walking distance of New London Union Station and Intercity Bus Service.
The conference is scheduled to coincide with train schedules.

Co-sponsors to date:
Connecticut League of Women Voters, League of Women Voters of Southeastern Connecticut, New London Landmarks, Tri-State Transportation Campaign, CT Citizens Transportation Lobby, The Day newspaper (to be confirmed)

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WEBMASTER NOTES... Webmaster Notes...

A short reminder that the December 15 edition of Destination: Freedom, (next week) will be our last regular editon for calendar 2008, (hot news items aside). We will resume regular publication with the January 5, 2009 edition after the holidays.


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END NOTES...  Publication Notes...

Copyright © 2008 National Corridors Initiative, Inc. as a compilation work and original content. Permission is granted to reproduce content provided acknowledgements to NCI are given. Return links to the NCI web site are encouraged and appreciated. Color Name Courtesy of Doug Alexander. Content reproduced by NCI remain the copyrights of the original publishers.

Web page links as reproduced in our articles are active at the time we go to press. Occasionally, news and information outlets may opt to archive these articles and notices under alternative web addresses after initial publication. NCI has no control over the policies of other web sites and regrets any inconvenience experienced when clicking off our web site.

We try to be accurate in the stories we write, but even seasoned pros err occasionally. If you read something you know to be amiss, or if you have a question about a topic, we’d like to hear from you. Please e-mail the editor at Please include your name, and the community and state from which you write. For technical issues contact D. Kirkpatrick, NCI’s webmaster at

Photo submissions are welcome. NCI is always interested in images that demonstrate the positive aspects of rail, transit, intermodalism, transportation-oriented development, and current newsworthy events associated with our mission. Please contact the webmaster in advance of sending large images so we can recommend attachment by e-mail or grant direct file transfer protocols (FTP) access depending on size. Descriptive text which includes location and something about the content of the image is required. We will credit the photographer and offer a return link to your web site or e-mail address.

In an effort to expand the on-line experience at the National Corridors Initiative web site, we have added a page featuring links to other transportation initiative sites. We hope to provide links to those cities or states that are working on rail transportation initiatives – state DOTs, legislators, government offices, and transportation organizations or professionals – as well as some links for travelers, enthusiasts, and hobbyists. If you have a favorite link, please send the web address (URL) to our webmaster.

Destination Freedom is partially funded by the Surdna Foundation, and other contributors.

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