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Upstate NY Counties Bypassed by Amtrak


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#1 TML

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 10:42 AM

I have noticed that in upstate NY, some counties contains tracks which Amtrak trains use but have no Amtrak stops along these tracks. Here's a list of such counties I've been able to gather:

 

Putnam County

Herkimer County

Madison County

Cayuga County

Wayne County

Genesee County

Chautauqua County

 

Although two other counties (Bronx and Albany) are also "bypassed" by Amtrak, I have excluded them from this list since they have stations in nearby counties which I believe are more than adequate to serve their needs.

 

I wonder if it may be feasible for Amtrak to add any stops in these counties...



#2 lo2e

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 11:18 AM

Keep in mind that adding additional stops along an existing route adds to the time it takes to get from beginning to end of the route, so for example, if there were two additional stops along the Maple Leaf, it will take even longer than the already 12 hours it currently takes to go from NYP to Toronto.

 

Plus, are any of those counties more than an hour away from an existing stop?  If the nearest stop was 2-3 hours away, you might have a gripe.  As it sits, I think additional stops would be a completely unnecessary luxury.  Just my opinion, though.



#3 Anderson

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 11:33 AM

(1) The Maple Leaf is sandbagged by the border crossing time.  You could arguably add a stop to one of the other two Empire Service trains (or the LSL).
(2) County-by-county:
-Putnam County is served by Metro-North.  There might be a case to add an Amtrak stop opposite Newburgh (though that would still be in the neighboring county), but I'm not sure whether even that is necessary given the MNRR coverage.
-Herkimer County is pretty thin, and it's between Utica and Amsterdam.  You have three stations "in the neighborhood".

-Madison County is between Utica and Syracuse.  I think Syracuse provides sufficient coverage.
-Cayuga and Wayne Counties are between Syracuse and Rochester.  Again, the distance isn't that massive.
-Genesee County is between Rochester and Buffalo...but the Depew station is on that side of Buffalo.
-Chautauqua County is between Buffalo and Erie.  On the one hand, I think there might be a case to add Dunkirk, NY.  On the other hand?  The LSL is the only station calling there and the hours would be atrocious, so I don't think there's much gain to be had here.  If there were 2-3 daytime trains on this route I'd say it would be a good candidate for an add.

In general, those areas have a bunch of really small towns (<15000 folks) and are served by nearby city stations.  Putnam is covered by MNRR.


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#4 west point

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 01:14 PM

The boundaries between counties are usually political and not established for geographical reasons.  This question becomes a political one instead of a population, access, or other reasons.



#5 jis

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Posted 26 January 2018 - 10:55 PM

In any case it is upto NYSDOT to decide whether they want to add stops or not in NY State. It is not upto Amtrak.



#6 Anderson

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Posted 27 January 2018 - 12:02 AM

@jis:
That is sort-of true.  My understanding, via Charlie's experience out in WA, is that Amtrak has some leeway when it comes to the LD trains (for example, IIRC they looked at adding a stop or two during the CONO PIP, and restoring Hammond-Whiting was also considered in the LSL's PIP).  Since the Empire Corridor "happens" to almost entirely be covered by the LSL, in theory Amtrak could go off and add a stop somewhere without NY's involvement.  However, given the realities of the situation there the odds of them seeing a business case for doing so at their own expense are effectively zero (and even if they saw a case for it, the odds are pretty good that they'd want to try and hit up NYS for some funding for the new station, siding, etc.).

 


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#7 jis

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Posted 27 January 2018 - 12:38 AM

Yup. As you also observe, all that is theoretically true. Practically Amtrak simply does not have the money to apply any of that theory in reality. They can write PIPs regularly and then stash them away in drawers for posterity. I don't see anything happening beyond that without state initiated funding.



#8 neroden

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Posted 27 January 2018 - 04:07 PM

The one serious proposal I've heard is for Lyons, NY.  Two versions: a stop there, or an Empire Service frequency which turns there and terminates/reverses in Geneva.  This would be well-used by people from Canandaigua to Auburn.

 

Also occasionally suggested is a Empire Service which turns from Syracuse down to Cortland and terminates/reverses there.

 

Perhaps the most useful new route in New York State would be the Binghamton-Scranton-Hoboken route, but that's another story.


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#9 ainamkartma

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Posted 28 January 2018 - 10:26 PM

(2) County-by-county:
-Putnam County is served by Metro-North.  There might be a case to add an Amtrak stop opposite Newburgh (though that would still be in the neighboring county), but I'm not sure whether even that is necessary given the MNRR coverage.In general, those areas have a bunch of really small towns (<15000 folks) and are served by nearby city stations.  Putnam is covered by MNRR.

 

Also, it is a very short (20-30 minutes) drive from Garrison and Cold Spring (the two stations in Putnam County served hourly by MNRR but passed through by Amtrak) to Croton-Harmon, which is served by Amtrak and has much much more parking available.  Garrison and Cold Spring are "village" stations with very little parking available.  Poughkeepsie is only a slightly longer drive.

 

Ainamkartma






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