Amtrak Gulf Coast

Hytec May 1, 2020

  1. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., and Representative Steven Palazzo, R-Miss., today announced the award of a $5.45 million grant to support operating costs for the first three years of passenger rail service along the Gulf Coast, which ended in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina severely damaged the route.

    “Restoring passenger rail service along the Mississippi Gulf Coast is a long-awaited symbol of the progress our state has made in recovering from Hurricane Katrina,” Wicker said. “Regular service along this route will create jobs, increase quality of life for our residents, and give tourists and travelers a convenient option to access the many amenities along our shore.”

    “Restoring passenger rail service on the Mississippi Gulf Coast has been a long-held dream for the past 15 years. This grant, along with a lot of hard work by many people, brings that dream closer to a reality. This service will bring great tourism and economic benefits to our state,” Hyde-Smith said.

    “As we work to connect the Gulf Coast through public transportation, this grant provides continued support for improved rail service and accessibility. As the Amtrak project moves forward, Mississippi will have four stops on the route that will bring in more money for our local economy,” Palazzo said.

    The Federal Railroad Administration award to the Southern Rail Commission will enable resumption of Amtrak service involving two daily round trips from New Orleans to Mobile, with station stops in Bay St. Louis, Gulfport, Biloxi, and Pascagoula. The States of Louisiana and Mississippi, as well as the City of Mobile, will provide additional operating support for the restoration of the route.
     
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  2. mmi16

    mmi16 TrainBoard Member

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    I don't see NoLa to Mobile as being a cash cow for Amtrak.
     
  3. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    The Gulf Coast Limited, NOL-MOB, was started in August, 1996 with three cars. By the end of December ridership had increased to the point that Amtrak added two more cars that ran daily near capacity. Then during the week between Christmas and New Years, CSX shut down the line for repair to the Lake Pontchartrain Rigolets bridge. It was unannounced to the public, even ticket holders. When service resumed in January, the public's attitude was "Fool me once....". So the service was dropped in March.

    I am sure the market is there, especially with the Mississippi casinos. We are tired of the congested traffic around New Orleans and would welcome an alternative.
     
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  4. mmi16

    mmi16 TrainBoard Member

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    The service on CSX's NO&M Subdivision was always the Sunset Limited, first from NoLa to Orlando and later it was cut back to NoLa to Jacksonville. The Bayou Canot derailment happened in 1993 - the service was initiated several years before that accident in which 47 people were killed.
     
  5. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    If as you say, that is horrendous mismanagement. :cry::cry::cry:
     
    gmorider likes this.
  6. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Just found out that Amtrak has suspended New York <=> Miami service on both the Silver Star and Silver Meteor until June 3rd because of Coronavirus concerns. The Star is a lightly patronized train, but the Meteor surprises me. Auto Train seems to be running normally.
     

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