Rail

Group urging return of Amtrak's N. Fla. services

Posted on February 29, 2012

Tallahassee, Fla., and Leon County officials, joined by representatives from cities and counties throughout North Florida, gathered at the Tallahassee Amtrak station early this week, urging federal and state transportation officials to restore Amtrak passenger rail service between New Orleans and Jacksonville. The group called upon citizens to contact their state and federal elected officials and voice their support for restoring service to the region.

“Reestablishing Amtrak passenger service through North Florida will strengthen our local economies and offer new opportunities for our citizens,” said Tallahassee Mayor John Marks. “North Florida communities have waited nearly seven years for the restoration of passenger rail, and we respectfully urge Congress and the legislature to resume this service.”

There has been no Amtrak passenger rail service in North Florida since 2005, when Hurricane Katrina caused damage to part of the Sunset Limited Route from New Orleans to Jacksonville. Repairs enabled the restoration of freight train traffic; however, Amtrak has not reestablished passenger service along this portion of the Sunset Limited Route.

The federal Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008 required Amtrak to submit a plan to restore passenger rail service between New Orleans, Louisiana and Jacksonville/Sanford, Fla., but the necessary steps detailed in this plan have yet to be implemented.

“As gasoline prices reach $4 a gallon, North Florida residents are seeking alternative modes of transportation,” said Tallahassee City Commissioner Nancy Miller. “Since Amtrak service is 30 percent more efficient than travel by car, rail transit should be an option for Tallahassee and other communities throughout North Florida.”

The State of Florida plans to spend $118 million to reestablish service from Miami to Jacksonville, yet there has been no further effort to resume passenger service for North Florida. In light of this situation, the following local governments and organizations have passed resolutions supporting the restoration of Amtrak service and the Sunset Limited Route:

City of Tallahassee; City of Madison; City of Pensacola; City of Marianna; City of Quincy; City of Perry; City of Live Oak; City of Milton; City of DeFuniak Springs; Leon County; Escambia County; Madison County; Franklin County; Wakulla County; Gadsden County; and Northwest Florida League of Cities/ Suwannee River League of Cities

The resolutions will be delivered to Governor Rick Scott and leadership within the state legislature and the U.S. Congress.

“Passenger rail service between New Orleans and Jacksonville is a strategically important component of the national intercity passenger train system,” said Robert J. Stewart, chairman of the National Association of Railroad Passengers. “This route segment will serve an unmet need by connecting Florida with the southern and western United States.”

For more information about the restoration of Amtrak passenger rail service between New Orleans and Jacksonville, please review Amtrak’s P.R.I.I.A. Section 226 Gulf Coast Service Plan Report.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Feds wants more proof of local money for Durham-Orange light rail line

Go Triangle expects its Board of Trustees to vote April 26 on a $70 million engineering contract, which would be executed only after the FTA allows the project to advance.

SEPTA trains collide, injuring 4

Crews are still working to remove the 18 cars involved, with each car weighing about 37 tons. The NTSB is on the scene and fully in charge of the investigation.

Minn. legislators attempting to move $900M from rail to roads, bridges

GOP legislators have long sought to block planning and funding for light-rail projects, saying they put metro-area priorities above rural Minnesota.

Alstom secures $105M Australian trainset contract

The contract will expand PTV’s fleet to 101 trains (606 cars) delivered from Alstom’s manufacturing facility in Ballarat since 2002.

DC Streetcar fares to remain free

The decision to hold off on charging fares was based on two reasons — District Department of Transportation feared charging even $1 per ride would scare away passengers and charging a fare would actually cost the District money.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close