The National Corridors Initiative Logo

Apr 24, 2017
Vol. 17 No. 16

Copyright © 2017
NCI Inc., All Rights Reserved
Founded 1989
Our 17th Newsletter Year


A Weekly North American Transportation Update For Transportation
Advocates, Professionals, Journalists, And Elected Or Appointed Officials,
At All Levels Of Government.

James P. RePass, Sr.
Managing Editor / Webmaster
Dennis Kirkpatrick
Foreign Editor
David Beale
Contributing Editor
Molly N. McKay

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

  Guest Opinion…
Train Service Still Has A Role In The Country
  Financial Lines…
MBTA OKs $2 Billion Operating Budget For FY2018
  Political Lines…
APTA Fighting Proposed Transit Budget Cuts
  Commuter Lines…
Illinois Amtrak Improvements In Final Stretch
Long Island Rail Road Expansion Moves Forward
Caltrans Charger Locomotives To Enter Service
   On Capitol Corridor
  Selected Rail Stocks…
  Environmental Lines…
Wind Power To Fuel Sound Transit
   Light-Rail Trains
  To The North…
Deb Matthews Says Liberals Will Study, Not Build,
   High-Speed Rail Link Between
   Toronto And London
  Off The Main Line…
CapeFLYER Begins Memorial Day Weekend
RUN To Seattle
  Publication Notes …

GUEST OPINION... Guest Opinion...  

Train Service Still Has A Role In The Country

From The Bismarck Tribune

There’s a possibility under President Donald Trump’s budget that North Dakota could lose its Amtrak service. That would be unfortunate.

North Dakota gets long-distance train service through Amtrak’s Empire Builder, which runs from Chicago to the Pacific Northwest. The train goes through Fargo, Grand Forks, Devils Lake, Rugby, Minot, Stanley and Williston. For many it’s the last chance to travel by rail.

Trump’s budget seeks to eliminate federal funding for Amtrak’s long-distance services, which are considered inefficient and are blamed for most of Amtrak’s operating losses. While Amtrak is a for-profit business, it’s partially funded by the government.

Going by rail is a more leisurely form of travel. It allows passengers to relax and enjoy the scenery as the train moves along. Traveling by train used to be a common form of transportation, but it has become a dinosaur of sorts. Most people don’t think of trains when making travel plans, which is too bad because train travel can be more relaxing.

The National Association of Railroad Passengers argues that given time, long-distance train travel will show a profit and offer economic development opportunities. That’s open to debate since Amtrak has been struggling for years to show a profit. The chances that Congress will follow Trump’s recommendations aren’t too bright.


Photo:  Michael Vosberg

Amtrak’s Empire Builder at Fargo, ND

North Dakota’s congressional delegation opposes cutting funds for the long-distance service. Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., who has been a strong supporter and defender of Trump, has come out against the cuts. He noted the Empire Builder served 454,625 passengers in 2016, which would be a lot of people forced to find alternative travel.

Sens. John Hoeven, R-N.D., and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., cited the negative impact cutting Amtrak would have on rural communities.

While it doesn’t look likely Congress will approve cutting the long-distance service, some changes are needed. Train travel can’t just be a luxury dependent on federal funding. Amtrak needs to find ways to wean itself off federal funds.

The nation shouldn’t give up on train travel because it still offers opportunities. We just need to do it right.

From an item appearing at:

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FINANCIAL LINES... Financial Lines...  

MBTA OKs $2 Billion Operating Budget
For FY2018

From Progressive Railroading

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s (MBTA) Fiscal and Management Control Board has approved the agency’s nearly $2 billion operating budget for fiscal-year 2018.

The budget carries a structural deficit of $30 million, which is nearly 10 times smaller than a previously projected operating deficit of $335 million, MBTA officials said in a press release.

“We still face serious challenges, but we can also report significant progress, more than many people thought was even possible,” said MBTA Acting General Manager and Chief Administrator Brian Shortsleeve. “We owe it to our riders to keep making the tough decisions necessary to position the [MBTA] for long-term sustainable success.”

The latest budget’s deficit will be largely covered by borrowing from assistance funds provided to the MBTA by the Massachusetts Legislature this year.

The board also directed the MBTA to identify $5 million in commuter-rail savings.

The MBTA and its fiscal control board have been working toward balancing the agency’s budget through a combination of internal cost controls and increasing revenue. To learn more about the MBTA’s operational and financial turnaround efforts, read this feature from Progressive Railroading’s February issue.

Meanwhile, MBTA commuter-rail operator Keolis Commuter Services last week announced plans to install a new swing bridge and positive train control (PTC) infrastructure on the Newburyport/Rockport lines.

The company will replace a 130-year-old swing bridge over the Danvers River in Beverly. The work will require shutting down the lines for 28 days, Keolis officials said in a press release.

“By simultaneously installing the swing bridge while PTC infrastructure is being installed, the number of days the trains will have service suspended will be reduced, compared with not doing the two projects at the same time,” Keolis officials said.

During the closures, crews also will perform other maintenance and enhancement work, including replacing about 10,000 ties between stations in Beverly and Ipswich.

[ Editor Note:  The Danvers Bridge replacement project will see Newburyport and Rockport trains truncate at Salem and turn back to Boston.  Shuttle buses will move passengers to Beverly.  However, regional meetings are still taking place on how to best serve people that have to go beyond that point on the impacted lines.  The PTC weekend work will see total closure on the two lines.  While alterative surface bus service is available from the MBTA’s Blue Line subway as far as Salem, there are no current plans to offer any bus service beyond that during the installation process on the impacted weekends. ]

Found at:

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POLITICAL LINES... Political Lines...  

APTA Fighting Proposed Transit Budget Cuts

By Stuart Chirls
Railway Age
Via Rail, Track, and Structures

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) is taking the fight to Capitol Hill to oppose President Trump’s budget proposal to cut major public transit appropriations for the remainder of fiscal 2017 and 2018.

APTA said its Government Affairs team is working aggressively with members of Congress to make the case for continued funding.

The association urged members during the Congressional recess to open their facilities to members of Congress to demonstrate the value of public transit and reject the proposed funding changes.

The recess ends April 21 for the Senate and April 24 for the House.

APTA has put together a ready-to-use “First 100 Days” toolkit featuring resources to facilitate these visits, including backgrounders, talking points, customizable invitations and other material.

The group said that Trump’s proposed cuts to the Capital Investment Grants (CIG) and TIGER grants programs put more than 50 projects in 23 states at risk. APTA has taken that message directly to affected members of Congress. As a result, more than 100 members of Congress have written letters in support of CIG funding as part of the annual appropriations process, it said.

Other recent activities include:

From an item at:

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COMMUTER LINES... Commuter Lines...  

Along For The Ride

Illinois Amtrak Improvements In Final Stretch

By Mark Schlinkmann
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Via St Louis Today

The $1.95 billion, eight-year upgrade of the St. Louis-to-Chicago Amtrak rail corridor — with a key goal to boost the high-speed to 110 mph along 75 percent of it — is in its final stretch.

Installation of new rails and concrete ties and various other improvements along the 284-mile route began in 2010, funded largely by federal economic stimulus dollars allotted during President Barack Obama’s administration.

Over the next few months, much of the project’s concluding work will take place in Madison and Macoupin counties in the Metro East area, roughly from Shipman to Granite City.

Illinois transportation officials at an event in Alton last week briefed residents on planned temporary closings of 18 at-grade street crossings to allow installation of improved crossing gates, new fencing and other improvements. Five crossings in Macoupin County already have been affected.

Moreover, passenger train service on the part of the route between St. Louis and Springfield, Ill., will be shut down May 16-23 to allow some Metro East bridge work. During that period, chartered buses will handle that segment of Amtrak’s five daily round trips.

Increasing the maximum to 110 mph in open expanses outside the St. Louis and Chicago areas will trim about an hour in travel time.

“Currently, it’s about five and a half hours from end to end,” said Scott Speegle, a spokesman for the Illinois Department of Transportation. “It’ll be about four and a half once the project is finished and we’re able to run the 110 high-speed.”

Currently trains do up to 79 mph along the route.

While Amtrak prepares for the improvements on the route, uncertainty clouds the future of passenger rail service because of President Donald Trump’s proposal to cut federal funding for 15 long-distance, multistate Amtrak routes. That’s part of Trump’s recent budget submission to Congress.

Four of the five St. Louis-to-Chicago round trips apparently wouldn’t be affected since they are largely state-funded and would still get some federal money under Trump’s plan.

But the fifth, part of the Texas Eagle line running from Chicago to San Antonio, Texas, would be phased out under Trump’s proposal.

Among other lines that would end under the Trump plan are the Southwest Chief from Chicago through northern Missouri to Kansas City and Los Angeles and the City of New Orleans from Chicago through Carbondale, Ill., to New Orleans.

Although the St. Louis-to-Chicago improvements are expected to be finished this year, exactly when the new 110 mph maximums actually will begin is hard to pinpoint, officials say.

It could be sometime next year, they say. But timing depends on testing of a new type of signaling system on the line, which Amtrak shares with freight trains.

Richard Harnish, executive director of the Midwest High-Speed Rail Association, said the system includes positive train control. That will use radio and GPS technology to help monitor trains’ position and speed. “They have to be very conservative with testing,” Harnish said.

Harnish, while happy to see the upcoming 110 speed materialize, hopes that a far faster high-speed line can be built in the corridor in the future.

Meanwhile, IDOT officials emphasize that speed isn’t the current project’s only benefit.

Speegle said there also will be better train flow and increased reliability. In other words, there will be fewer delays that sometimes make current trips longer than the scheduled five-and-a-half hours.

He noted that much of the line is a single track that accommodates passenger and freight trains in both directions. To reduce delays, second-track segments and sidings have been added or lengthened so two trains can run simultaneously in more areas.

At the street crossings, new “four-quad” gates will block two traffic lanes on each side of the track and keep vehicles from weaving around crossing bars. There also will be sidewalk gates barring pedestrians from crossing while a train is approaching.

Another feature is 3-foot-high pedestrian fences at crossings “to encourage people to cross where they should,” Speegle said.

Harry Deatherage, a farmer from the Mitchell area, was among about 40 people at the Alton event, looking at displays and talking with IDOT officials.

Deatherage in an interview questioned spending so much on a project during a time of budget constraints. He said he sees relatively few passengers on Amtrak trains going by his property.

But Rick Johnson, a retired elementary school teacher from Alton, said higher speeds would lead to more passengers. “It’ll be a nice option for people who aren’t crazy to fly,” he said.

He also looks forward to the opening this summer of the new $20 million Alton Amtrak depot that is part of the project.

Another supporter on hand was Audrey Rhea, of Godfrey, who works in sales. “It’s good they’re trying to improve the infrastructure,” she said. “It has to be done at some point. Bite the bullet and do it.”

Mark Schlinkmann is a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Found at:

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Long Island Rail Road Expansion
Moves Forward

By Mischa Wanek-Libman
Railway Age

The Final Environmental Impact Statement for a proposed Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) expansion project has been issued following more than a year of data collection, analysis and public outreach.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the FEIS confirms the expansion project will improve LIRR service, reliability and safety, for both residents and commuters on Long Island.

TheLIRR Expansion Projectplans to add a third track to 9.8 miles along the congested Main Line of the LIRR between Floral Park and Hicksville and eliminate all seven street-level grade crossings within the project corridor.

“Expanding the Main Line is crucial to the future success of Long Island businesses and its residents, and this environmental study brings us one step closer to fulfilling New York’s goal of providing reliable, safe travel for all,” Cuomo said. “By increasing rail capacity and eliminating street-level grade crossings, this project will reduce congestion and help build a transit system that meets the demands of 21st century travelers, marking another major step forward in our efforts to build a brighter future for Long Island.”

Officials said the study’s findings confirm that the LIRR expansion project will improve service and reduce delays for customers throughout the system by adding a third track to the bottlenecked, two-track section of the Main Line in Nassau County. The elimination of grade crossings in the project area will also reduce delays and improve safety by eliminating trains horns and crossing bells, end idling of automobiles at crossing and reducing traffic jams. The study demonstrates that by constructing sound barriers and retaining walls, the project will significantly reduce noise in local communities by blocking sound from trains.

MTA Interim Executive Director Veronique “Ronnie” Hakim said, “This comprehensive study is the result of exhaustive research, data collection, analysis and public consultation, using some of the strictest environmental standards in the nation. It confirms not just vast benefits for commuters throughout the entire LIRR system, but for our neighbors in the project corridor as well, with significant reductions in noise and the safety and convenience benefits that come from eliminating grade crossings, building sound barrier walls and parking garages and updating stations.”

LIRR President Patrick Nowakowski said, “This completely new effort to fix the two-track bottleneck on the LIRR’s Main Line between Floral Park and Hicksville is like none that ever came before it – with exhaustive community participation, no residential relocations and significant reductions in noise and improvements in safety for local residents.”

The construction of the project will break with past LIRR projects as Cuomo has directed the project use the “design-build” contracting technique, which places oversight of the construction in the hands of private construction firms. The Governor’s office said utilizing this technique will shorten the construction timeline, improve efficiency and minimize the impact of the project on surrounding communities and rail passengers.

From an item found at:

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Caltrans Charger Locomotives To Enter
Service On Capitol Corridor

From Global Rail News

Siemens is to begin revenue testing of its new Charger series locomotive on California’s Capitol Corridor later this month.

The new generation of Tier 4 diesel-electric locomotives was launched on April 18 at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento, just a few miles away from where the locomotives were designed and built.

A 30-day revenue testing period will begin later this month on the Capitol Corridor, which links San Jose and Sacramento, ahead of services beginning on other routes.


Photo:  Siemens

Officials pose with one of the new Charger series locomotives in the barn.

Siemens is initially supplying six Charger locomotives to Caltrans to serve Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor, San Joaquin and Pacific Surfliner routes.

Michael Cahill, Siemens rolling stock president, said: “Unveiling the first of these locomotives built in California, for California, is a testament to the hard working employees in Sacramento who designed, engineered and manufactured these state-of-the-art rail vehicles.”

“We’re proud to bring the latest technologies to life for Capitol Corridor riders and help usher in the next generation of clean, smart and efficient rail travel in California.”

Although traction power is supplied by the locomotive’s 4,400-horsepower QSK95 Cummins diesel engine, fuel consumption is reduced through a regenerative braking system which recycles energy from the electric traction motors to power auxiliary systems.

The Charger locomotive was the first high-speed passenger locomotive to meet the USA’s Tier 4 emissions standards.

Found at:

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STOCKS...    Selected Rail Stocks...
BRKB – Burlington Northern Santa Fe

CNI – Canadian National

CP –  Canadian Pacific

CSX – CSX Corp

GWR – Genessee & Wyoming

KSU – Kansas City-Southern

NSC – Norfolk Southern

PWX – Providence & Worcester

UNP – Union Pacific

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ENVIRONMENTAL LINES... Environmental Lines...  

Wind Power To Fuel Sound Transit
Light-Rail Trains

By Mike Lindblom
Seattle Times

Sound Transit will buy 10 years of wind power to replace a dirtier mix of electricity where its trains run in SeaTac, the agency announced Tuesday.

The supply for light rail, along with Angle Lake and Sea-Tac/Airport stations, currently comes from Puget Sound Energy, where coal and natural gas together provide 59 percent of the portfolio.

But the contract for 2019-28 will replace those fossil fuels under PSE’s new Green Direct program.

“When we reduce our own carbon footprint of that transit service, we’re creating an even larger benefit for the region,” said Amy Shatzkin, sustainability manager for Sound Transit.


Photo: Alan Berner/The Seattle Times

Wind turbines generate electricity at Puget Sound Energy’s Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility in Kittitas County. Sound Transit has agreed to buy wind power from PSE to further development of new wind farms southeast of Olympia by RES Americas.

Other early subscribers include Western Washington University, King County, REI, Target, the cities of Anacortes, Bellevue, Snoqualmie and Mercer Island, and 116 Starbucks stores.

All together, their commitments allow PSE to order 130 megawatts from wholesale wind farms that a developer is planning in Thurston and Lewis counties, said Heather Mulligan, the utility’s market manager for renewables.

The Skookumchuck Wind Energy project would be built on Weyerhaeuser land southeast of Olympia, by RES Americas.

These are new resources that aren’t expected to generate windfall profits, PSE says.

“This is purely to serve our customers. They’ve been asking for us to supply more options for renewable energy. We’re hoping this project will meet that demand,” Mulligan said. PSE already owns three wind farms in Eastern Washington.

Sound Transit will spend 5.1 cents per kilowatt hour in 2019 for wind, compared with 4.7 cents in 2017 for general power — so there’s a slight premium.

However, the agency may eventually save money, Shatzkin said. The deal locks in a 2 percent yearly inflation rate, so if other power rises 2.7 percent per year through 2028, Sound Transit staff say, they’ll break even. Forecasts range from 2.4 to 4.8?percent, Shatzkin said.

Light-rail trains within Tukwila and Seattle rely on Seattle City Light, which uses 99 percent renewables, mainly hydropower.

Sounder commuter trains run on diesel, though the agency is working to reduce emissions, Shatzkin said.

Eight older-model Sounder locomotive engines have been overhauled since 2013, with three more scheduled this year, for a fuel savings of 2,000 gallons annually per engine. Trackside electricity is supplied at the Lakewood base, to reduce diesel use between trips.

Sound Transit has set a goal of a carbon-neutral operation by 2030.

Its wind power deal doesn’t include energy for Lynnwood, Overlake and Federal Way extensions during 2023-24, but Shatzkin said opportunities may arise.

Found at:

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TO THE NORTH... To The North...  

Deb Matthews Says Liberals Will Study,
Not Build, High-Speed Rail Link
Between Toronto And London

By Patrick Maloney
The London Free Press
Via Stratford Beacon-Herald

From “game changer,” to not-so-fast.

Or, so it seems.

Canada’s Deputy Premier Deb Matthews is tapping the brakes on dreams of a high-speed rail line linking Toronto through Southwestern Ontario, saying her Liberal government promised to study — not necessarily build — the mega-project.

The qualified support from Matthews, who along with other London MPPs met with city council members Wednesday, drew criticism from New Democrats as proof the Liberals pitched the plan to win votes in the 2014 provincial election.

“We never said we would build high-speed rail. We promised we would do the homework,” Matthews said in response to questions from Coun. Harold Usher. “None of us wants to build a white elephant. I just want to be clear on the commitment.”

Weeks before the 2014 election, then-transportation minister Glen Murray outlined the Liberal government’s plan for a high-speed rail system — starting later that year with an environmental assessment and business case for the line — in an address to London business leaders.

“If people think this is out of scope or possibility, it is not,” he told the Chamber of Commerce.


Image Via Beacon-Herald

Deputy Canadian Premier Deb Matthews

Late that same year, Matthews — the London North Centre MPP — said “this is a real game changer for London,” after the province announced it would begin the environmental assessment for a high-speed line connecting Windsor, London, Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto.

Wednesday, Matthews said she believes a high-speed link to Toronto would “change London’s fortunes entirely,” bringing it into the commuter orbit of Canada’s biggest city. But she was cautious about a study on a Toronto-to-Windsor system, which is led by former federal transport minister David Collenette and could be released this spring.

“My concern is about ridership,” she said. “Will people get out of their cars (and) onto high-speed rail if it’s available?”

Those comments — not nearly as confident as Liberal ministers sounded in 2014 — could stoke concern the massive project, talked about for decades, may not actually happen — or, more painfully for London, it could only go as far west as Kitchener-Waterloo, leaving London on the outside of a potential economic surge.

KW is now the outer limit in Western Ontario of the Ontario government’s own commuter rail service to Toronto, the GO system.

The Financial Post also recently reported that an airline is offering 18-minute flights between K-W and Toronto, possibly starting by June.

NDP MPP Peggy Sattler expressed “surprise” with Matthews’ high-speed rail comments. In a post-meeting interview, she said Matthews struck a much different tone than the pre-election Liberal comments.

“As I recall, about a month before the last election all of a sudden high-speed rail was held up as a shiny object,” the London West MPP said.

“I would want to make sure the release of Collenette’s report and whatever ensues is not used again as an election gift going into the (2018) provincial election.”

Late Wednesday, after the story hit The Free Press website, Matthews’ office issued a clarification of her comments through her press secretary, saying “high-speed rail truly has the potential to transform the way we travel in our region,” and that “our government has proven” its commitment to the project by launching the environmental study and appointing Collenette as a special adviser on the project.

“Mr. Collenette recently tabled his report with us and we look forward to providing an update on this important project in the very near future,” Matthews said in the late-day statement.

Wednesday’s meeting between city politicians and London MPPs touched on a number of issues, but there were two areas of focus — transportation and housing. The latter was timely, given that just 12 hours earlier council put $1.6 million of surplus cash into affordable housing.

Coun. Josh Morgan suggested cities like London need more “flexibility” with funding to help the most vulnerable, a call Sattler applauded.

“The greatest need (in a lot of public housing) is supports for the people who live there,” Sattler said. “The city has identified a place where, rather than rigid funding streams, it would be useful (to have) some flexibility . . . to actually meet the needs of people.”

City politicians also met with London’s federal MPs Wednesday afternoon, where BRT was among the issues discussed.

From an article appearing at:

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

CapeFLYER Begins Memorial Day Weekend

From An MBTA Press Release

Entering its fifth year of service, the CapeFLYER is excited to announce that trains will once again run from Boston to Cape Cod starting on Memorial Day weekend. Service will begin on Friday, May 26th and operate on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout until Labor Day.

During the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, the CapeFLYER will provide free service for active service members and veterans in partnership with the 13th Annual Troops in the Spotlight event led by Cape Cod Cares for the Troops.

“Every year we are excited to start the trains to Cape Cod as a sign that summer is here and it is time for people to avoid the traffic and take the train to enjoy all the Cape and Islands have to offer,” said Cape Cod Regional Transit Administrator Thomas S. Cahir.  “What makes the opening weekend even more special is the opportunity to work with Cape Cod Cares for the Troops to honor and recognize our active and veteran service members who have done so much for our nation.”  Troops in the Spotlight is a twenty-four hour event to celebrate our service members and veterans; there are various activities and opportunities to support our troops.   It begins on Sunday, May 28th at 11:30AM and concludes on Monday, May 29th at 11:30AM.  For tickets, service members and veterans are encouraged to register at

“We’re very pleased to partner with CCRTA and offer this service to current and former military service members during Memorial Day weekend, a time when our nation reflects on the ultimate sacrifices of those who served our nation,” said Acting MBTA General Manager Brian Shortsleeve. “We also look forward to another successful season for the increasingly popular CapeFLYER.”

For the season, the CapeFLYER will operate as its own dedicated train on Friday nights leaving South Station at 5:50 PM and making stops in Braintree, Brockton, Middleboro, Wareham, Buzzards Bay and Hyannis.  Trains also operate on Saturdays and Sundays and holiday Mondays until Labor Day weekend.  The complete schedule is available at

In addition to a convenient trip to Cape Cod, the CapeFLYER works closely with the ferry operators to provide convenient connections to and from Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.  Cape Cod RTA buses are available at Buzzards Bay and Hyannis to bring passengers to the Cape communities.  Finally, the CapeFLYER operates a café car that sells excellent food and drinks, including beer and wine, provided by Blonde on the Run Catering.

The CapeFLYER is a unique partnership between the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.  For additional information, including a complete schedule, fares and information about connections, please visit:

About the CCTRA: The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority (CCRTA) is one of 15 Regional Transit Authorities within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and has been providing public transportation services since 1976 to residents and visitors as well as consumers of state agencies and human service organizations for all 15 Cape Cod communities. The CCRTA owns and operates the Hyannis  Transportation Center in downtown Hyannis and the state of the art Operations and Maintenance Facility in South Dennis. For more information, visit Cape Cod RTA at our website or follow us on Facebook at: or Twitter at  and on Instagram at

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Events... Events...  

Rail Users Network (RUN) Annual Conference

RUN to Seattle

The Pacific Northwest Passenger Rail Summit is being held Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. at the Columbia City Theater, 4916 Rainier Ave South, Seattle, Washington. This regional conference, sponsored by the Rail Users’ Network, and All Aboard Washington (AAWA) will examine passenger rail and trail transit issues in the Pacific Northwest. The focus will be on recent success stories, projects which are moving forward, and those which are standing still and need support. We will also highlight the strategies of rail advocates in other parts of the country to promote and expand passenger rail.

An optional tour on Friday, May 5, will give Conference participants an opportunity to experience public transportation in the Greater Seattle area, which has one of North America’s most varied transit systems. Sounder commuter rail, Link light rail, modern streetcars, ferries, and even a 1962-vintage monorail. In fact, some of the city’s buses are electric “trolley buses”, which were once ubiquitous, but now only run in a few cities.

Who should attend:

The registration fee for the Pacific Northwest Rail Summit is $55 before March 31, $60 before May 1, and $65 at the door.

Registration includes morning refreshments, lunch, an afternoon refreshment break, and all conference materials/handouts. The optional tour on Friday is free, however participants are responsible for their own rail/transit fares. If you wish to stay in Seattle before or after the conference, we recommend you look at Seattle’s official tourism website

For the full write-up, speaker list, and discussion panel schedule see:

To Register early go to:

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PUBLICATION NOTES...  Publication Notes...

Copyright © 2017 National Corridors Initiative, Inc. (NCI) as a compilation work and original content. Permission is granted to reproduce content provided acknowledgements to NCI and Destination: Freedom (DF) are given. Return links to the NCI web site are encouraged and appreciated. Color Name Logo courtesy of Doug Alexander. Content reproduced by NCI & DF remain the copyrights of the original publishers.

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