HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Hereís the depressing rea...
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:09 PM

Hereís the depressing reality of train travel in America


from Grist:



Hereís the depressing reality of train travel in America
By Sarah Laskow


Remember that beautiful map that imagined what the countryís high-speed rail network could look like? Well, in case you felt happy or optimistic after looking at it, hereís a map, via Atlantic Cities, that shows the depressing reality of American rail:



Those bubbles represent the ridership for various Amtrak stops around the country. Itís no secret that the Northeast Corridor line is the systemís most popular, but you can get a sense of how much more used it is than any other bit of the system. And long distance, cross-country lines? They barely register.

To a certain extent, the more popular stops just denote more populous areas. But thatís not the whole story, as Atlantic Cities explains:

Texas, for example, has three of Americaís ten largest cities: Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. But the inexplicable lack of a direct rail connection between Houston and Dallas makes the state look, on Hicksí map, emptier than Missouri. In fact, the nationís second-largest state had only 465,000 riders in 2012. Missouri, meanwhile, had 739,000.

Other states suffer from a similar routing problem. Ohio, though crossed by regional routes on its northern and southern borders, has no train at all connecting the stateís major cities. It has one-fifth the passenger train traffic of neighboring Michigan.


In other words, American rail is failing because itís ass-backwards. ....................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://grist.org/list/heres-the-depressing-reality-of-train-travel-in-america/



68 replies, 5118 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 68 replies Author Time Post
Reply Hereís the depressing reality of train travel in America (Original post)
marmar Feb 2013 OP
Suich Feb 2013 #1
Gormy Cuss Feb 2013 #7
kiri Feb 2013 #29
Siwsan Feb 2013 #2
longship Feb 2013 #3
Nye Bevan Feb 2013 #4
Lordquinton Feb 2013 #17
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #45
Politicalboi Feb 2013 #5
Egalitarian Thug Feb 2013 #6
MADem Feb 2013 #8
oberliner Feb 2013 #44
MADem Feb 2013 #46
oberliner Feb 2013 #47
MADem Feb 2013 #52
oberliner Feb 2013 #59
MADem Feb 2013 #61
WinkyDink Feb 2013 #9
Divernan Feb 2013 #38
WinkyDink Feb 2013 #68
high density Feb 2013 #10
stuntcat Feb 2013 #11
Yavin4 Feb 2013 #25
ellisonz Feb 2013 #12
vanlassie Feb 2013 #13
Downwinder Feb 2013 #14
brooklynite Feb 2013 #15
2naSalit Feb 2013 #55
marybourg Feb 2013 #16
alcibiades_mystery Feb 2013 #18
RebelOne Feb 2013 #19
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #23
defacto7 Feb 2013 #57
Gore1FL Feb 2013 #20
kiri Feb 2013 #27
Laura PourMeADrink Feb 2013 #40
Warpy Feb 2013 #21
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #22
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #24
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #31
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #35
SunSeeker Feb 2013 #41
MADem Feb 2013 #48
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #67
Lars39 Feb 2013 #26
Permanut Feb 2013 #28
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #36
Permanut Feb 2013 #37
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #39
MADem Feb 2013 #49
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #65
kmlisle Feb 2013 #30
NYC_SKP Feb 2013 #32
FarCenter Feb 2013 #33
nineteen50 Feb 2013 #34
quadrature Feb 2013 #42
SheilaT Feb 2013 #43
Mira Feb 2013 #50
Blue_In_AK Feb 2013 #51
juajen Feb 2013 #56
Blue_In_AK Feb 2013 #58
whistler162 Feb 2013 #62
Ian David Feb 2013 #53
Lone_Star_Dem Feb 2013 #54
CabalPowered Feb 2013 #60
woo me with science Feb 2013 #63
hfojvt Feb 2013 #64
upi402 Feb 2013 #66

Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:18 PM

1. No trains in South Dakota, Maine,

and Kentucky? That seems really weird to me.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Suich (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:37 PM

7. There are trains in southern Maine.

The Amtrak line is called the Downeaster (Portland area-NH-Boston) and is extremely popular. There's a bubble for it on that map.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Gormy Cuss (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:06 PM

29. The Amtrak Acela is awful

Dear Amtrak,
Yesterday I rode the Acela train from Washington, DC to Boston. Business class, Quiet car.

This was the worst train trip I ever took.

For 7Ĺ hours, I was jerked, bumped, bounced beyond description. Amtrak should provide a free brain scan to check for concussion with every Acela ticket. After 7Ĺ hours, it turns a brain to mush.

It is impossible to read a book or a computer screen. No one's eyes can follow the constant bumps. No one can type an email--you never know what key will be hit. I tried, and I spent another hour trying to correct the bump-mistakes.

In addition, we had to put up with a high-pitched whine or whistle that came from above.

I am not sure whether my kidneys and bowels will ever recover from this.

In any Western European country, such a lousy train would be a national embarrassment. In China or Japan, such a train would lead to the resignation of the Minister of Transport. And I know this, because I have been on trains in all these places.

I used to be a supporter of Amtrak and high-speed rail service. The Acela has changed my mind 180 degrees. It is clear that anyone who rides in Acela is likely to come away believing that high-speed rail is like the Acela. This does enormous damage. Acela is a grotesque example of decent rail service.

The Acela is a poster for bad trains. For the sake of human kind, it should be banned immediately as a health threat. And for the sake of decent rail travel, it must be stopped.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:18 PM

2. I love that I can take the train from Flint, MI to Chicago, and then all points west

I've taken about 6 cross country train trips and it's absolutely my favorite way to travel.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:24 PM

3. An hour drive to Grand Rapids gets me anywhere Amtrak goes.

Taken it many times, once from LA to New York (state). Many times between Chicago and Detroit.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:28 PM

4. Long distance, cross-country rail will never make sense.

But I would love a high-speed rail link between New York and Chicago.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:21 PM

17. I think it would make sense

though it would be more of a weird W shaped system, than a nice big line from one end to another.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:55 PM

45. Agreed

It takes a fairly long time to get across the country by train, and so much less time in an aircraft. I do intend to do it, though, in my retirement, when I have plenty of time on my hands.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:29 PM

5. There is no Reading Railroads

That takes you to Philly. I was surprised to find no trains that went from the airport at Philly to Reading Pa. I know Reading Pa isn't a real nice place, but if you get off a plane at night, you better have a car rental, or stay the night at the bus station. They don't have buses at night. And they don't have a bus station at the airport. You have to taxi into Philly for that.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:33 PM

6. I'm confused. Are you saying that rail travel can't work because there is no rail travel? n/t

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:38 PM

8. This is something I wish we, as a country, would invest in, in a big way.

Even if not every line is high speed, I wish there were more lines and more options. I think they should take the old Pullman sleepers and put them on the end of the car, rent them out to pet owners, and allow people to bring their pets along--a few wee wee pads and a travel cage would enable pet owners to manage quite nicely, and they could sleep with their dog or cat at night. Even with size limitations on pets, this would triple train travel to FL--a lot of old folks I know only drive a car (and hate doing it) because of a pet. They'd be on that auto-train in a heartbeat if they could keep Fluffy in their cabin with them!

We could easily do better, and we should!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MADem (Reply #8)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:37 PM

44. Dogs and cats on trains?

That sounds dreadful in so many ways.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to oberliner (Reply #44)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 11:44 PM

46. You put them in old pullmans at the end of the train--regular passengers don't

have to even see them. People who want to travel with their animals must purchase a roomette.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MADem (Reply #46)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 11:48 PM

47. Maybe that could work

I'm highly allergic which is why the idea does not thrill me - but I can see how this would be good for animal lovers.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to oberliner (Reply #47)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:02 AM

52. I would rent a roomette and take the train in a heartbeat if they'd do this.

I would travel more by train and less by car. They wouldn't even have to use the newer cars--an old roomette is fine w/me. I'd just like to be able to travel with the dogs on public transportation.

And they could easily just make a few rules--no animals in the corridors, gotta keep 'em in their crates getting on and off, that kind of thing. Put linoleum on the roomette floors, supply each one with a few "wee wee" pads, and there ya go.

I wouldn't think letting them mingle with passengers is a good move anyway--too much liability. But locked in a roomette, safe with their owners? Just the ticket!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MADem (Reply #52)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:08 AM

59. That seems pretty reasonable

I can imagine issues though with dogs barking while passengers are trying to sleep on long overnight routes. But I guess there is the same sort of issue with unruly passengers and whatnot.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to oberliner (Reply #59)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:31 AM

61. If you're in the pet car, you've agreed to put up with it!

And they could always put a baggage car or snack bar between the pet cars and the rest of the train--that would offer a bit of distance.

I'd think most pets would be soothed so long as their owner was with them, and they could sleep together or at least in the same roomette.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:41 PM

9. Let me add that all the blue circles in PA are EXTREMELY misleading. NO train service, e.g.,

in the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton area.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WinkyDink (Reply #9)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:36 PM

38. Service from Pittsburgh to state capitol about to be discontinued!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Divernan (Reply #38)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:48 PM

68. Who wants actual citizens there, anyway? *sarcasm*

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:45 PM

10. The Portland-Boston train is enjoyable

Unfortunately it takes at minimum forty five minutes longer than the bus because of its L-shaped route, combined with the slow speed of the tracks. I definitely take it more for comfort than convenience. I think it would be transformative for Southern Maine if they could get this route down from the scheduled 2.5 hour ride to one hour.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:47 PM

11. k & r

I live in that NE part, I take the train from DC to NY about once a year, I'm lucky it's so easy.
There's also a "China-town" bus that some people take which sounds like a great deal, it's cheaper than the train, but I never feel safe on highways. But the people I know who've taken this bus have done it lot of times, with no problem of course. Ugh, I dunno, highways scare me more than train tracks. But my husband was in a train wreck once! I always think that's cool, being able to say you survived a train wreck! "Train Wreck".. that's dramatic!

anyway yah k & r

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to stuntcat (Reply #11)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:58 PM

25. You cannot sleep on any of those "China-town" buses

Not because of the passengers or the bus itself. No. It's because of the poor condition of the highway. Every 15 minutes or so, the bus hits a big pothole which jars you awake.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:55 PM

12. Notice the lack of connections between California and the Mountain West.

A high-speed rail line network between San Francisco, Los Angeles and Las Vegas would surely do well.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:01 PM

13. I traveled on Amtrak last week thru the Los Angeles station where I had a three hour wait for a bus.

I could not believe how attentive and friendly the red caps were. They kept stopping by where I was sitting, asking how I was doing... when was my connection.... did I need any help?
.
.
.
.
.
Then I realized that I had accidentally sat in some seats for the disabled.
I must say, it was quite pleasant. As was the train.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:06 PM

14. In Texas I think there is method to their madness.

The are afraid those who don't drive will descend on them in Austin. They tried hard enough to keep us from voting.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:20 PM

15. How about, compare the map to population centers?

I don't disagree that the US would be better off with more train service, but how much ridership (and how many stations) would you expect to find in the Mohave Desert, or Rocky Mountains, or Texas farm country?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to brooklynite (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:47 AM

55. Up here

In Montana I have to drive five hours to get to a terminal to get on, then it tales days to get anywhere. Used to be able to get on in SE Idaho but that terminal was closed down many years ago. I have taken a few trips on the trains... Sand Diego to Boston and back; from Portland. OR to SLC and to San Diego on different trips.

But the the last one, SLC to San Diego was the worst I ever had to endure-and I had to drive two hours to get there from where I was in Idaho at the time. Left SLC at something like 2am, I went to sleep for a while and when I woke up, we were sitting still in the middle of Nevada waiting for a signal because a freighter was running late due to some train wreck in CA. I was traveling with my nephew, by the time we got to Sacramento we were seven hours off schedule. They put us on a bus and drove us to Emeryville to catch the N/S connector that runs down the valley, that stopped in every little town along the length of central CA, we sat on hard plastic seats like at a stadium, and dropped us in Bakersfield at 1am so we could wait an hour for another bus that took us to LA and then to San Diego where, at least, they dropped us across the street from the trolley so we could get to the part of San Diego county we were trying to get to. It was just horrid.

Before that experience, I actually liked taking the train instead of driving, I won't fly anymore since W got into office.

If we had a better rail service and accessibility, I would sure use it... otherwise, I'd rather just drive the whole way.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:20 PM

16. We did 2 complete circle tours of the whole

country on Amtrak, using all four of the east- west routes. It was an incredible experience.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:25 PM

18. Long distance train travel is not preferred at this time because it costs as much as a plane

and takes many times longer. Chicago to Cleveland on the train takes 15 hours. You can fly it in an hour. If those cost the same, or even if the flight is close, nobody is going to do that. Multiply the same problem many times for New York to Atlanta, Milwaukee to Seattle, and etc.

We need high speed rail. We don't have anything like it.

And yes, it is depressing.

That said, I almost always prefer rail to flight in the Northeast corridor. The trains are on time and clean and easy and the travel is more enjoyable. If we could replicate that with fast trains, people would take them.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #18)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:45 PM

19. That is so true.

I took a train from Mismi, FL, to Philadelphia, PA, many years ago. I had a totally private compartment with bed, toilet and all the amenties for the same cost as a plane flight. But I enjoyed the train ride much more than a plane flight.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #18)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:55 PM

23. I agree that the time/price ratio is the real problem.

The powers-that-be always point to how people "do not want to ride by rail", when that is not the real issue. And we will never know if there is no high-speed rail to show them that they are wrong.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #18)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 02:09 AM

57. But I think many rail riders in the US

ride the train because they are afraid to fly. They don't want to fly and this is the way they can get around, therefore the price accommodates non-fliers.

I used to love riding trains back in the 60's. I remember taking the Empire Builder from Seattle?? to Chicago as a kid. I'd ride in the dome car the whole time. Great memory.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:46 PM

20. The existing rail system is not designed with passenger traffic in mind.

It's not ass-backwards. It's a freight infrastructure. The freight lines are not failing. They are doing quite well.

The high-speed rail won't follow freight paths.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Gore1FL (Reply #20)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:04 PM

27. Dear Amtrak--concussions come with every ride

Dear Amtrak,
Yesterday I rode the Acela train from Washington, DC to Boston. Business class, Quiet car.

This was the worst train trip I ever took.

For 7Ĺ hours, I was jerked, bumped, bounced beyond description. Amtrak should provide a free brain scan to check for concussion with every Acela ticket. After 7Ĺ hours, it turns a brain to mush.

It is impossible to read a book or a computer screen. No one's eyes can follow the constant bumps. No one can type an email--you never know what key will be hit. I tried, and I spent another hour trying to correct the bump-mistakes.

In addition, we had to put up with a high-pitched whine or whistle that came from above.

I am not sure whether my kidneys and bowels will ever recover from this.

In any Western European country, such a lousy train would be a national embarrassment. In China or Japan, such a train would lead to the resignation of the Minister of Transport. And I know this, because I have been on trains in all these places.

I used to be a supporter of Amtrak and high-speed rail service. The Acela has changed my mind 180 degrees. It is clear that anyone who rides in Acela is likely to come away believing that high-speed rail is like the Acela. This does enormous damage. Acela is a grotesque example of decent rail service.

The Acela is a poster for bad trains. For the sake of human kind, it should be banned immediately as a health threat. And for the sake of decent rail travel, it must be stopped.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to kiri (Reply #27)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:04 PM

40. wow...great post ! So, what is the problem? the tracks? We took

the high speed train in France...and it was absolutely dreamy. We had privacy, super comfortable seats, a table, and servers who brought lunch/snacks and drinks. It was so comfortable we fell asleep.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:47 PM

21. What my part of the West lacked was north-south service

If you want to go from NM to Denver, you have to go east or west, then north, and then back the way you came.

NM got its first (and only) high speed passenger train a few years ago, service between Santa Fe and exurbs to the south. Every time gas prices go up, ridership jumps. It's going to be the salvation of the exurbs as gas prices keep going up. Both Texas and Colorado have made noises about extending it north and south but no commitments have been made as yet. The next time gas goes to five bucks a gallon, maybe something will get built.

Light rail is also something that's underused and could solve a lot of the problems around the country.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:52 PM

22. Zero passenger service to Las Vegas...

They used to have the "Gamblers Special" between LA and Vegas.

That train boasted some of the most insane fashion sense on the planet.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #22)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 08:57 PM

24. More insane fashion sense than WalMart?

That would be worth the trip!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #24)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:10 PM

31. These are the types who consider this to be "fine art"...



On black velvet, of course.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #31)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:16 PM

35. Thanks for the laugh.

I needed that.

I especially love the aura around Elvis, but not Jesus. I think that is blasphemy. Or should be.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #35)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:06 PM

41. Not if you understand that Elvis is God.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #35)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 11:48 PM

48. JC looks like he has a bit of "aura envy" happening there, too--check out that sideways glance! nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MADem (Reply #48)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:47 PM

67. I don't blame him.

I would be a little miffed too if Elvis was more esteemed than the Son of God, who is also God.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:00 PM

26. I should be able to travel from Nashville to any where, dammit.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:04 PM

28. I've never been on a train..

My Sweetie found out, and bought me a ticket. So, at 67 years of age, I'm going to take my first train trip next week, from Portland Oregon to Seattle and back. Always wanted to go, but just never did. Course I didn't get to Disneyland until I was 48, so I'm not exactly on the cutting edge of progress.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Permanut (Reply #28)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:19 PM

36. Trains are great....

Snow?

No problemo:

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #36)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:30 PM

37. Cool..

Never seen anything like this. Saw one sitting idle in Skagway, Alaska, but never seen one in action. Thanks Spitfire!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Permanut (Reply #37)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:42 PM

39. I saw them going through Battle Creek....

Dowsed my car.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #36)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 11:57 PM

49. Coolest post of my day!!!!! nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MADem (Reply #49)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:13 PM

65. The last one is barely visible...

It's a rotary snowplow.



The railroads have been clearing snow this way for over a hundred years.



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:10 PM

30. I long to go West on the Train from Florida

But to go West you first have to go East and then back West again. Its ridiculous. There is even a schedule for N Fla (Live Oak) to New Orleans but the line is closed down.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:10 PM

32. I see jobs, jobs, jobs, and a new green transportation infrastructure.

The silver lining...

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:11 PM

33. There is not much along I-45 between Houston and Dallas

And there is not much along I-10 between Houston and San Antonio.

OTOH, there are a number of small cities between San Antonio and Dallas.

So the San Antonio to Dallas corridor along I-35 is the best place to improve rail in Texas.

I'd like to see the corridor from Portland, ME to Atlanta, GA improved. As noted above, it is slow from Portland to Boston. Once you get below Richmond, it is pretty poor through the rest of VA, NC and SC.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 09:15 PM

34. It is by

design not chance.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:12 PM

42. how much of the $700B in Stimulus

was spent on a

Transcontinental
All-Electric
Rail Network?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:36 PM

43. I absolutely agree that there needs to be more and better train service across this country.

Keep in mind how incredibly large this country is. All of western Europe could fit into the eastern half of this country with room left over. Our distances are only matched by Russia or China. Which is not a real excuse not to fund decent train service in this country. Passenger train service. As it currently stands, freight has priority. Several years back I took the train from Kansas City to St. Louis. The drive takes three or four hours. A flight is one hour. The train takes 5 hours, 40 minutes according to the schedule. But there had been heavy rains the day before and parts of the track were washed out, and because freight takes priority we kept on being put off on various sidings to let freight trains pass. It took about nine hours to complete the trip.

I am hoping to take a major across the country train trip in June, and I can only hope I don't run into bad weather and get delayed a couple of days. But I truly hate to fly anymore because of the b.s. with the TSA. I'm beginning to be tempted to drive, all the way from New Mexico to DC to attend a wedding.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 11:59 PM

50. Makes me want to cry.

It is only one, but a significant one, bit of proof of how we are putting first things last.
It is shameful how our citizens are cheated.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:00 AM

51. We're actually thinking of taking a train trip this summer

just for fun. Fly to Seattle, take the train to Chicago, fly to Denver to see our daughter and family, and then fly back to AK. I'm thinking that north plains route might be nice since I've never been to those states.


It really is kind of a sparse-looking map, though.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Blue_In_AK (Reply #51)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:56 AM

56. I assume that you will have a private room w/bathroom.

I loved the train trip I finally took, from Greenville, SC to New Orleans. Even the bumpy ride didn't bother me; however, the bathrooms were almost unbearable. The swinging back and forth by the train made it nearly impossible for urine to stay where it belonged. So, all of you be warned that the bathrooms are an experience. Amtrak could improve the quality of the ride immeasurably by improving the bathrooms.

However, it was wonderful watching the excitement of the people who were seeing NOLA for the first time. Most of them thought that Lake Ponchartrain was the ocean. It is huge and you cannot see shore in the distance. I loved getting to know people on the train, as I left my seat and went into the lounge where I could get coffee and play cards and watch the scenery as it skated by.

I really loved it. My late husband and I wanted to go so badly, but he couldn't make it, so I made it for both of us. Incidentally, I hummed City of New Orleans all the way in to NOLA. The Super Dome was a sight to see. I have become as fond of South Louisiana as a native. I have lived here almost thirty years. It is home. I was picked up by one of my children for the drive into Lafayette. You can travel to Lafayette by train, but it requires an overnight in New Orleans. Didn't want to wait that long.

I highly recommend this American experience before they do away with the wonderful passenger trains in this country. What a shame, and what a boost it would be if we could travel all over the country by rail.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to juajen (Reply #56)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 03:47 AM

58. We're in th preliminary planning stages,

so that's good information about the bathrooms.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Blue_In_AK (Reply #51)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:40 AM

62. The Empire Builder route is great...

took that a few years ago after taking the train to San Francisco then to Portland. Summer should be great, I took it in the fall.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:24 AM

53. We need ultra high speed evacuated tube transport and rigid frame airships. n/t

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:32 AM

54. Preaching to the choir here.

I hate that I can't take a train to see my family on the west coast, but I can to see my family in the east.

Flying is such a nuisance these days, not to mention environmentally bad, and not everyone has the stamina for a 24 hour drive anymore. Besides, I like trains. They remind of me if stories my G-grand father used to share.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:17 AM

60. I rode Denver to Chicago recently

..in a sleeper compartment. The track conditions were horrendous. It was like sleeping in the back of 4WD navigating a jeep trail.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:58 AM

63. :(

K&R

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:05 PM

64. that route I took in 1990 must no longer exist

I took a train then from Lincoln, NE to Portland, Oregon, and I am pretty sure we did not go through Denver. But with no people getting off in Boise, I am thinking that route is not there any more.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to marmar (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:17 PM

66. Build more infastructure. Create jobs. Help business grow.

I see potential.

But no... we need austerity so the rich can dodge taxes and loot tax dollars from the treasury....

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread