[Correction: Everett Stuart is president of the Rhode Island Association of Railroad Passengers; Steven Musen is a Director at Large.]
passengers and officials used a public outreach tour hosted by the Federal
Railroad Administration (FRA) to voice their support for passenger train
service in the state, and voice concern over a proposed alignment that would
exclude much of the current route through
reported in last week’s Hotline, the FRA has been holding scoping meetings
for Amtrak’s $151 billion, 30-year plan to develop the Northeast Corridor
(NEC). NARP Council Member and Rhode Island Association of Railroad Passengers director Steve Musen spoke in
“The top priority for the corridor is additional tunnels
That sentiment was echoed by leaders in other states, who seemed more focused on near-term expansion of capacity and frequency than a high-speed service still decades away.
"There is nothing speculative about Metro-North,” said Connecticut State Representative Gail Lavielle (R-Wilton). “The reasoning is not 'build it, and they will come.' Instead, it's 'get on with it already, because they are here—and if you don't, they just might not stay.' "
That didn’t keep some from fretting about exclusion from the
proposed 220 mph service, which would leave the current route along
While the current shoreline route would, in fact, receive
upgrades to existing Amtrak service—with higher speeds and more frequencies—many
Next up, the FRA will look at the development of initial alternatives and ridership forecasts, and wrap a preliminary environmental impact statement and draft service development plan in 2014. The scoping process is scheduled to be finalized in 2015.
Transportation Authority (MTA) may lose out on a much needed infusion of funds
However, Judge R. Bruce Cozzens Jr. ruled in favor of county executives in suburbs served by MTA, who filed a suit against the law. Judge Cozzens ruled that the levy violated a home-rule provision in the state constitution, which requires a two-thirds vote in the legislature (the law passed by 60 percent in the Assembly, and 52 percent in the Senate).
“Removing more than $1.2 billion in revenue from the Payroll Mobility Tax, plus hundreds of millions of dollars more from other taxes affected by yesterday’s ruling, would be catastrophic for the MTA and for the economy of New York state,” warned a statement released by the MTA. If the ruling stands, the Authority may be “forced to implement a combination of extreme service cuts and fare hikes.”
Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano, one of the executives named in the suit, called the ruling a victory for taxpayers. Mangano has stated the MTA should close the deficit through “efficiencies and cost-cuttings” before it seeks additional funds, either through additional taxes or increased fares.
“We will vigorously appeal today’s ruling,” Aaron Donovan, an MTA spokesman, told Bloomberg News. “We believe this opinion will be overturned, since four prior challenges to the constitutionality of the law making the same argument have been dismissed.”
The White House
announced August 20 that it would expedite the permitting and review process
for four transportation projects across the
“Across the country our investments in infrastructure are putting people back to work building and modernizing our transit systems, railroads, bridges and highways,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "The Administration is committed to doing its part to help communities across the country move forward with these critical projects as quickly and efficiently as possible.”
The move is part of the White House’s We Can’t Wait initiative, which recognizes the value of transportation investment in fostering economic growth and providing a world-class infrastructure to allow American businesses to remain globally competitive.
The press release provides profiles for the two passenger
rail projects—one of which will preserve Empire Builder service along the
current route through
Point Defiance Bypass,
Portland, Oregon’s TriMet announced this week that its Westside Express Service set a new record high for ridership by topping 1,700 trips in a single day, marking 29 months of month-on-month growth since the service launched in February of 2009.
That daily figure is a 9.3 percent increase over the previous July. Overall, weekly ridership in the month of July had also jumped by 9.3 compared to the same period last year.
The line is one of the most recent additions to
The official press agency for the state reported that the
collision happened in
Heilongjiang is served by a both conventional passenger rail service and higher-performance rail (featuring top speeds of 125mph to 155 mph), the latter a recent introduction as part of the state’s national efforts to improve China’s transportation infrastructure. It is not clear which service was involved in the accident.
A grain elevator fire
The westbound Chicago–Port Huron train was delayed west of
“This will be a lengthy delay, but it’s out of our hands,” said Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari.
Amtrak provided charter buses to get passengers to their final destination.
Amtrak’s eastbound California Zephyr was delayed in McCook,
Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari told local reporters that the
train was delayed for a little over five hours at the scene of the strike, and
an additional two and a half hours in
No passengers or crew were injured in the accident.