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Thread: Amtrak Gulf Coast service to return in 2 years

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Tokyo, Washington D.C., Ottowa, QC

    Default Amtrak Gulf Coast service to return in 2 years

    From what I've been seeing, it's possibly the revival of the Gulf Coast Limited (route; not name). Sucks that the Sunset Limited doomed to still suffer.
    Last edited by J.A.V.; 06-17-2019 at 01:08 AM.
    Redefined for better content craftsmanship.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Pacific Time


    Will the states pony up, long term, to cover operating losses? Matching a federal grant for infrastructure is one thing, operating the thing is another. Amtrak is under pressure to reduce long-distance train costs, and one way they do that is to get states to cover the deficits. And be very clear: there will be deficits; only the Northeast Corridor has enough service to break even or better on pure (not including capital or maintenance) operating cost. The states, so far, have come close in some cases, but haven't broken even or made money yet, and that's with as many as a dozen round trips a day plus bus connections in a relatively short (300-500 miles) corridor. One train a day each direction, or less (3x a week?), doesn't cut it.

    The successful state services (California, Cascades, as examples) have considerable state investment, including operating subsidies, scheduling, marketing, and equipment purchases, in addition to paying for infrastructure improvements needed to keep passenger trains more or less on time and to run them in quantities that make sense for people to ride. If the Gulf Coast states are not prepared to make that kind of investment, I don't see the new train lasting very long. Amtrak certainly won't make the investment - they're under orders to eliminate trains, not add new ones.

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