Jump to content
Railroad Bill

Amtrak Store in Chicago Closed

Recommended Posts

Some sad news that the Amtrak Store in CUS has closed. I bought some nice pins and T-shirts on our trip in June but this trip I found the gates down and all merchandise gone. I talked to a Red Cap who had entered the room and he said his understanding was the store would be closed for foreseeable future. He said it was a bad idea for Amtrak since he saw lots of people buying souvenirs there. More cuts to save money? :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some sad news that the Amtrak Store in CUS has closed. I bought some nice pins and T-shirts on our trip in June but this trip I found the gates down and all merchandise gone. I talked to a Red Cap who had entered the room and he said his understanding was the store would be closed for foreseeable future. He said it was a bad idea for Amtrak since he saw lots of people buying souvenirs there. More cuts to save money? :(

Very likely to cut costs. Heard on FB that it has been down for a while (since a week or two ago, maybe longer). Trying to appease the bean counters, perhaps? Or maybe in damage control mode before the Big Rip, is my guess. I describe the Big Rip for Amtrak as follows:

 

Amtrak's Big Rip Explained

 

1. Onboard/station services cut

2. LD Ridership/popularity down

3. LD Fundings cut

4. LD Routes cut

5. Non-NEC Corridor ridership/popularity down

6. Non-NEC Corridor fundings cut

7. Non-NEC Corridor routes cut

8. NEC privatized

 

Final resting state: Amtrak as we know it ceases to exist. This looks like a conspiracy to allow Amtrak to be gutted.

 

Now let's compare to the real Big Rip theory

 

1. Clusters of galaxies ripped apart

2. Galaxies ripped apart

3. Star clusters/binary star systems/planetary systems ripped apart

4. Stars and planets ripped apart

5. Molecular structures ripped apart

6. Atoms disintegrated

7. Spacetime fabric ripped apart

 

Final resting state: An infinitely stretched universe filled with random elementary particles.

 

The two looks similar, does it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some sad news that the Amtrak Store in CUS has closed. I bought some nice pins and T-shirts on our trip in June but this trip I found the gates down and all merchandise gone. I talked to a Red Cap who had entered the room and he said his understanding was the store would be closed for foreseeable future. He said it was a bad idea for Amtrak since he saw lots of people buying souvenirs there. More cuts to save money? :(

 

I saw the closure while I was in CUS last week. I have my doubts they will reopen as they've been liquidating merchandise for the last year. Also, if you check the online store there are many items on clearance and even more have been discontinued and removed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've contacted "Amtrak Matt" who is in charge of the online store and products for any information he may be able to provide. When I hear something I'll post it here as soon as I can.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Where was it....I never saw it.....

It should be down the slope from the Met Lounge/Great Hall area...opposite from the former bag check area (Last time I was in CUS was in early January, so it would be hard to tell without a photo)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Where was it....I never saw it.....

It should be down the slope from the Met Lounge/Great Hall area...opposite from the former bag check area (Last time I was in CUS was in early January, so it would be hard to tell without a photo)

 

 

It was in the old passenger services area.....which was across from the old ticket counters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This descriptions of what was there before don't help those who have never been to the station or when they have did not place a mental picture of everything (at least what they did not use - like bag check, passengers service and ticket counter) at CUS.

 

I was there a few weeks ago. It is located on the lower level along the wide hallway that connects the main station and the great hall. That hallway has a slope to help identify it. The floor, at the time I was there, was covered with leaves. :o

 

As I recall, the Amtrak Store was behind me on my right. The new Metropolitan Lounge is past the crossway.

 

post-5142-0-61520300-1508497685_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's by the fountain and escalators up to Canal St.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's by the fountain and escalators up to Canal St.

Please clarify that a new store has now opened, or not. The earlier posting with the red cap's comment caused some confusion.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

Edited by ChuckL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

It's by the fountain and escalators up to Canal St.

Please clarify that a new store has now opened, or not. The earlier posting with the red cap's comment caused some confusion.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

 

The store was closed and empty when I was there on Oct 3rd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

It's by the fountain and escalators up to Canal St.

Please clarify that a new store has now opened, or not. The earlier posting with the red cap's comment caused some confusion.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

The store was closed and empty when I was there on Oct 3rd
Thanks AmtrakBlue.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I strongly suspect this is clearing out space in preparation for the renovations to Chicago Union Station, which is going to rip that area out entirely in order to open up the concourse.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I was at the new CUS metro lounge in September I asked at the front desk if the store had been moved. I was told that it had been closed since June.

 

As for the online store, I ordered something small early last month and got a free "bonus" of an Acela teddy bear. Which is very cute but it sure gives me the feeling they're deleting inventory prior to shutting down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like Amtrak is getting out of the souvenir business. Perhaps it wasn't profitable.

 

I really don't think we want Amtrak getting out of every business line which isn't profitable..... :)

 

Though you might well have a point, of course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The closing of the store has been in the works for about a year. I saw a t-shirt hanging on the wall and asked if they had it in my size, they told me they didn't. I asked if there were going to be more on order, I was told that they didn't know. I asked on the next three or four trips to CUS and stopped asking after about April. Then last week, they were emptied out. I've also noticed that certain t-shirts on the website were eliminated once supplies ran out. The posters are gone, there were no 2017 calendars made and many items are on clearance and have been for quite a while.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The direction of the store isn't necessarily a result of cutbacks. There is another reorg occurring and since this is in play, the store isn't really a priority right now :ph34r: . It may or may not come back.

Are you suggesting the store lost money? And that the loss had nothing to do with costs and income?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok folks. I received a message from Amtrak Matt this morning and he states that Amtrak Chicago is under going changes which we are all aware of as far as leadership. And they are focused on the more critical things currently. And he also addressed the online store. Saying that they reduce prices on the online store to move sitting merchandise quickly that is “just sitting there”. With no plans to eliminate the online store.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Amtrak Forum

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The store isn't really a priority right now.

&

They are focused on the more critical things currently.

Thanks to both of you for putting this into perspective. I'd imagine most members here would prefer that Amtrak had a vibrant and thriving souvenir business, including yours truly, but their core business and future viability will not be made or broken by how many mementos they stock or where they sell them. Better to get the rest of the business running smoothly and worry about the train related trinkets later.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am not clear on the Amtrak Store....does Amtrak actually operate it themself, or is it run by Staples Promotional Products, apparently the current vendor that supplies the products?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×