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Amtrak Serving "College Towns"


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#41 City of Miami

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 08:07 AM

The other day I noticed a fellow wearing a t-shirt in UVA colors with the Amtrak logo on the front. On the back it said The Hoo-ville Express. This is a kind of pun - UVA students call themselves Wahoos for some reason, often just Hoos. I take it also a reference to C-ville [a frequently seen shortening of Charlottesville] as well as to the Hooterville Cannonball of Petticoat Junction fame. I ran after him and asked where he got it. He said Amtrak was throwing out during a football game last year. I thought this was very clever marketing all around



#42 jebr

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 10:50 AM

Winona State University in Winona, MN, University of Minnesota and Macalester College not far from the St. Paul stop(plus I suspect more I'm forgetting), Purdue University in West Lafayette(you'd get off at Lafayette, and it's across the river), and IUPUI and Butler University in Indianapolis. Wouldn't be surprised if I'm forgetting some other Midwest colleges, but unfortunately some places have graveyard train arrival times(i.e. Cincinnati having both only a late at night Cardinal train and only 3 times a week, Fargo, ND having the daily Empire Builder come in both directions late at night, etc). I think Saint Cloud, MN has a Minnesota public college too(a la Winona), but the train times are early in the morning and late in the evening. Not as bad as Fargo's train times for the EB, but keep that in mind.

 

 

To build a bit more on the Minnesota-specific options:

 

Both Detroit Lakes and Staples have community colleges, but neither of them have great public transit options (especially during the calling times of the trains) and neither is within walking distance of the station. St. Cloud has SCSU, and the train station is a mile or two from campus. There's a decent bus system to get around town while you're there, but it doesn't look like the bus service runs during either of the scheduled times. A taxi/Uber would be needed for that.

 

St. Paul (and the neighboring Minneapolis) has the U of MN Minneapolis campus along the light rail, with the St. Paul campus accessible via a couple of local buses and the campus shuttle. Macalaster and Hamline are both along the A Line "rapid bus" on Snelling Avenue, and St. Thomas and St. Catherine's are along city bus lines in town. Augustana is also near a fairly frequent bus line and a decent walk from the light rail. There's Metropolitan State University which has a couple of campuses along bus lines, and there's a smattering of community colleges as well as some for-profit colleges that I'm not familar with transit access. Bethel appears to have a shuttle bus that connects to the A Line, but otherwise is inaccessible via transit, and Northwestern's bus service is so vague that I'm not sure what that offers, and public transit service is simply a suburb circulator that wouldn't easily connect with either of the calling times. I'm sure I forgot some of the colleges, but that's the ones I can think of.

 

Red Wing might have a community college but I'm not aware of any 4-year colleges (or anything nearby transit.) Winona has Winona State, which is within walking distance from campus, and the town has okay if not amazing public transit. There's also Saint Mary's, but it's not within walking distance of the station and I'm not sure how good the transit access is from there into town.

 

Out of all the options, Winona State is the closest/easiest to access via Amtrak, with the U of MN having a better overall "transit-only" experience with the METRO lines. If frequent bus service (buses every 10-15 minutes most of the day) is good enough, that would open up Macalaster, Hamline, St. Thomas, Augustana, and the Minneapolis campus of Metropolitan State University. St. Catherine's has less frequent bus service but still late enough to be able to connect to Amtrak. The rest of the campuses that I'm aware of would require private transportation of some sort to catch the train at least some of the time.



#43 Metra Electric Rider

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 04:25 PM

I don't think anybody has mentioned my (graduate) Alma Mater yet, the University of Illinois at Chicago, the CLOSEST University to CUS!


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#44 Bob Dylan

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 08:41 PM

My Alma Mater Southwest Texas State University, now Texas State U.in San Marcos,only 25 miles South of Austin, has a Non-staffed Stop for the Eagles with a Shed like "Station" outside the Intermodel Station for Local and Long Distance Buses..

In the old days there were 2 Stations there for the M-K-T ( "The Katy") and MoPac. Several Pasenger Trains called there daily including The Texas Special,The Texas Star and Mopac's Texas Eagle which had a Dome Car!😍

Texas State now has 35,000+ students and lots of them ride the Eagles as do Area Residents from surrounding towns and San Marcos itself.
"There's Something About a Train! It's Magic!"-- 1970s Amtrak Ad
 
".. I ride on a Mail Train Baby, can't buy a thrill.."--I said that!
 
"..My heart is warm with the friends I make,and better friends I'll not be knowing,
Yet there isn't a train I wouldn't take,No matter where its going!.." -Edna St. Vincent Millay




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