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benjibear

What happened to Acela?

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The more 160 MPH segments on the NEC go into service

 

Which is still at least a year or so away.

 

I honestly don't know if Amtrak has plans to up the speed with the current equipment either. And on top of that the only additional location where speed will increase is in NJ. The stretch in Maryland and Delaware will remain at the current speeds. And I don't know if their are plans to upgrade the Catenary and Signals to 562 in that area.

 

Let's remember that Acela is aimed at Business travelers looking to save time. Regional trains are aimed at travelers looking for the best price and are concerned about price.

 

 

Considering that for most of the city pairs, the time savings is minimal yet the fares are much higher, I would think that many corporate travel managers might wise up and make their people ride the Regionals. The Regionals do seem to be filled with business travelers if you ride the trains at the time that business travelers usually ride. Thise who are really price sensitive take the Bolt Bus or equivalent.

 

Now Acela first class is a superior product, and I can see business big shots who don't have to answer to the corporate travel managers spending the extra money to keep away from the riffraff, get a meal and enjoy the open bar.

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Let's be honest though since 2000 the Northeast Regionals have had plenty of names.

Initially real train names (which I prefer), then Acela Regional, Regional, and now Northeast Regional.

There really is no reason for The word northeast as other corridors don't run as Regionals. IE Midwest Regional, California regional, northwest regional.

 

You forgot the "Northeast Direct" branding, which they were using right before the launched the Acela.

Yes, but Northeast Direct was the name for all NEC routes put together. It included (what would later be) NER, but basically was just 20 routes mashed together and called Northeast Direct. Edited by cpotisch

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The more 160 MPH segments on the NEC go into service

 

Which is still at least a year or so away.

 

I honestly don't know if Amtrak has plans to up the speed with the current equipment either. And on top of that the only additional location where speed will increase is in NJ. The stretch in Maryland and Delaware will remain at the current speeds. And I don't know if their are plans to upgrade the Catenary and Signals to 562 in that area.

 

I would like to think somewhere the question has been asked, if funding where to be made available how and where would it best be spent for Catenary, Signal, and Track upgrades? That way, even if its unlikely to happen, they don't mess it up as bad as they have on the stretch in NJ. But who knows....

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I suspect Delaware and Maryland would be the next including additional track in places.

 

And of course there is this huge thing called Gateway in NJ/NY which involves lots of additional tracks and bridges and tunnels and what not.

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I do think there would be something to be said naming the through Northeast Regionals that go all the way to Virginia something more distinctive sort of like the Lynchburger vernacular (I guess its now the Roanoker).

 

Same with the Regionals that originate or terminate in Springfield.

 

Amtrak Midwest is definitely a new name to discribe the corridor service out of Chicago its on the Charger locomotives and is now appearing in some marketing materials:

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As far as why we use ACELA, here is a recent trip report.

 

We took 2251 from South Station to NewYork Penn this past Saturday (4/14).

 

The sold out train left on time, we ran ahead of schedule at the each of the limited stops, and arrived at NYP on the dot at 11:46 am.

This was despite some slow moves and waiting for a bridge to close.

 

The seats continue to be superior to Amfleet, far more room, the outlets all worked and the tray tables are far better to use laptops and tablets on.

 

Further the time savings of about 1/2 hour over regular NER service is priceless to those people like us who are part of the working world,

and value our leisure time like gold.

 

Ken

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