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Bedford

Training
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About Bedford

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    Train Attendant
  1. I ride a lot of long distance trains this year and every year and on most trips the host railroad would have nothing to be ashamed of and several Class I s choose to run TV ads (you've seen them). NS is back in the steam program business. So there is some interest in and perceived advantage in good PR for the railroad or they wouldn't spend a dime on it.
  2. Here's a thought to make outsourcing something other than a joke. The basic problem is that the bidder assumes financial risk for something that never makes a profit. (Hoosier State Experiment). How about this: Tax credit to any Class I that operates a long distance train that is equal to all avoidable costs plus 5%. Advertising costs would be included in avoidable costs so railroad could market the train and create a national positive media image for the railroad as a side benefit. The tax treatment would be a guaranteed subsidy to the Class I- if that's bad so is air traffic control, TSA, general fund highway maintenance, inland waterways and all the other taxpayer subsidies that keep America moving. Advantage to Class I Public Advantage 1. Costs covered just like commuter operations 1. Privatized operation with permanent funding source (like the highway) 2. Total control of "their flagship"-no open access slippery slope. 2. Since the train is the Class I 's mirror to the world the incentive is huge 3. Effective way to create visibility and positive image to general public on a to make the train look, feel and be equal to or better than all the other long national level (like UP steam program). long distance operations. 4. Get a lot more corporate benefit out of a train that is and will be running on your track anyway.
  3. Bedford

    Southwest Chief Re-Route?

    I was on the Chief in early June and the Scouts in the lounge had a "Save the Chief" petition they were asking us to sign.
  4. Bedford

    Private car avoidance

    This summer the timekeeping for LDT in and out of Chicago has been nothing short of horrendous. The vast majority of these trips did not involve private cars. That said, when private cars are picked up or dropped off enroute some time will be lost. It can range from almost unnoticeable to what you rightfully complain about.
  5. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    printman2000 gets my vote as an honest and honorable person.
  6. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    I believe you are correct, sir and you are helping to get to the bottom of this.
  7. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    Printman2000 asks Mr. Gallagher a key question. "If the reroute is cheaper and has the potential for higher ridership how does that not help Amtrak?" I would be very surprised if Brian or Mr. Boardman would dispute this if the two premises contained therein we in fact true. Printman2000 says "it seems to most people (if not all) that the reroute makes a lot more sense for Amtrak.". Who are "most people"? Are any of them decision-makers at Amtrak or BNSF? Do any of them hold the purse strings in Texas, New Mexico, Kansas or Colorado? How much money did "most people" spend on Amtrak last year? If the reroute is really cheaper and really has the potential for higher ridership how dumb do you think Mr. Boardman and Gallagher are?
  8. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    This is confusing. If the transcon would be faster, attract more riders and be cheaper to operate what is the head of Amtrak and the head of BNSF doing spending their valuable time riding a train through western Kansas promoting the inferior route?
  9. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    How about a daily train connecting the two biggest cities in Texas connecting with the Eagle with sleeping car and serving the best university in Texas?
  10. Bedford

    What is happening to the SWC route?

    Two fact corrections that may not make any difference. 1. The bill Colorado passed does not require the train to detour thru Pueblo. It requires a detour to Pueblo be considered five years from the bills passage with the money to do that not the responsibility of Amtrak, BNSF, Kansas or New Mexico but from Colorado. The big selling point of the bill was a probable contract for new rail from steel mill in Pueblo (they are the biggest domestic producer of rail now). Labor Unions were a major factor in getting the bill passed. 2. The drop dead date is not the end of this year but 2015. The New Mexico legislature passed and Gov. Martinez signed a bill to do an economic study of the current route and to have it ready for the 2015 legislative secession.
  11. Bedford

    Houston Station

    Union Station WAS used by Amtrak in the early seventies. The Texas Chief (Lone Star) left and arrived there until it was moved to the current SP station after some track modified to allow it to join the Sunset. During this time Amtrak had employees at both stations.
  12. What they told me when the van left before 22 got in was that the van also carried passengers from a southbound CHI-STL train; so the van didn't leave Springfield empty.
  13. In November I went from Denver to Austin to see OK state beat Texas. That was bad enough but on the way back 22 was late enough to Springfield that the van left. The conductor told me the same thing about going to Chicago and talking to passenger services. I called a friend at Amtrak Chicago and told him it would be cheaper to get a taxi to take the five of us left behind than to pay for motel rooms for us in Chicago. That's how I got my first limo ride from Springfield to Galesburg with plenty of time to catch the Zephyr. I was very popular with the other 4 folks who got left behind.
  14. Bedford

    Southwest Chief Re-Route?

    If the SWC were ever to go through Pueblo all the upgrades to track and additional infrastructure would have to be paid for totally by Colorado and nobody else and the operation would have to be blessed not only by BNSF but also by Amtrak; so talking about what Amtrak would be forced to do or give up is a bogus issue. It is far more likely that the Pueblo steel mill will get jobs and the contract for any new rail laid (if any in fact is ever laid). If a regular passenger train ever arrives in Pueblo again it will be coming from Denver and not La Junta and that is a very, very longshot.
  15. Bedford

    Southwest Chief Re-Route?

    The bill says no Pueblo consideration for 5 years
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