Posted 04 May 2018 - 07:23 PM
I wonder which type of cross-strait service would be more appropriate in that scenario: a bus or ferry shuttle? It would probably depend on capacity, frequency of service, and marginal cost. Buses would probably be more apt for multiple train frequencies. But in a single-frequency scenario, if two buses had to pay toll for two crossings each, a ferry’s overhead cost might pay off in the long run. I’d guess a ferry would have higher capacity than a bus, as well.
Here’s a crazy idea.....terminate service on both sides of the bridge, St. Ignace and Mackinaw City and bus across the bridge.
As I still believe strongly MDOT needs to initiate service up to Mackinac City from Detroit, Lansing, & Grand Rapids, what is the means to get to the Yoopers? I'm guessing rail access to the UP must come from Wisconsin. There's no rail tunnel under the Straits, right? So Sault Ste Marie is kinda the end of the line from the west?
Now here’s a crazy idea: Through ticketing to Mackinac Island with one of the island’s ferry operators. Imagine it: Pere Marquette Mk II Holland-Mackinaw City, Arnold Lines Mack City-Mac Island!
Ferrys wouldn’t work during the winter.....but busses can be used as the connection. The only problem I can see with busses is those days high profile vehicles aren’t allowed to cross and/or days the bridge is closed due to high winds...I suppose the same can be said about the ferry.
Your idea about Holland to/from the island is crazy enough to work and would be a boost to their tourism....also, a boost for the tulip festival in Holland and other festivals along the route, a win-win situation. It makes too much sense.....the main reason why MDOT and the state of Michigan will never approve of such an idea.
As far as the U.P./Wisconsin suggestion, the same logic applies as to why it wouldn’t happen.
Personally, I’d love to see the combination of the two ideas, being that I used to live in Central Wisconsin and that region into the Northwoods, Green Bay, Wausau, Marshfield, Eau Claire and other places in the region, in my opinion would have quite a demand plus in the U.P. Houghton, Marquette and points east would be served where the connection to Amtrak is a very long thruway bus connection at best.
Over 50,000 miles traveled on Amtrak since December, 2007. Next trip: September 25, HOM-SEA RT
Amtrak trains traveled on as of May, 2018: Pere Marquette, Empire Builder, Hiawatha, Wolverine, Coast Starlight, California Zephyr, Southwest Chief, Pacific Surfliner, Sunset Limited, Texas Eagle, Cardinal, Northeast Regional, Downeaster, Lake Shore Limited, Heartland Flyer, Amtrak Cascades, Ethan Allen, Capitol Limited and Carolinian