Amtrak relocates to SPUD May 7 (includes old topic)

Discussion in 'Amtrak Rail Discussion' started by jebr, Jan 15, 2013.

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  1. Mar 12, 2014 #101

    Ryan

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    I was thinking the same thing today. Hopefully "end of THIS year" will turn out to be ok.

    Sent from my iPhone
     
  2. Mar 12, 2014 #102

    Ispolkom

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    "I used to be disgusted, now I try to be amused."

    I'm sure that my Easter trip will be from Midway. I expect that my trip back after Memorial Day will arrive at Midway. I'd like to think that after Thanksgiving I might be arriving at SPUD, but I've given up on hope.
     
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  3. Mar 12, 2014 #103

    neroden

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    It is well into the ridiculous at this point. I'm hoping my planned 2015 trip to Minnesota will arrive at SPUD.

    This isn't the only overly-delayed project, though. Amtrak's behind on everything. On that trip from Syracuse to Minneapolis, I *ought to see*, in addition to SPUD and the Green Line:

    (1) New Viewliner dining car

    (2) New Viewliner dorm-baggage cars

    (3) New Viewliner full baggage car

    (4) New Viewliner sleeping cars

    (5) "Point of Sale" in the cafe car and dining car

    (6) Earlier schedule for the eastbound LSL (as noted in the PIP), with dinner

    (7) New location for Metropolitan lounge in Chicago (anyone remember that project)?

    (8) More on-time-performance for the LSL due to Schenectady to Albany double tracking

    (9) More on-time performance for the LSL due to Syracuse area track improvements

    (10) More on-time-performance for the LSL due to Englewood Flyover

    (11) Improved pickup/dropoff and bus connections at Chicago Union Station

    Of these projects only Englewood Flyover is on schedule AFAICT.

    And come 2015, the Empire Builder may still be too unreliable to connect eastbound with anything! Though I sure hope not.
     
  4. Mar 24, 2014 #104

    CHamilton

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    From a friend on Facebook. Not sure of his source.

     
  5. Mar 25, 2014 #105

    TraneMan

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    He said "According to the conductors announcement"
     
  6. Mar 27, 2014 #106

    CHamilton

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    And now Trains magazine is reporting that EB service to SPUD is "again delayed" due to delays in signal installation and testing. BNSF says that they're working to let Amtrak move to the depot as soon as possible, but

     
  7. Mar 27, 2014 #107

    montana mike

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    Thanks for the update--perhaps by the Fall we will see this happen!
     
  8. Mar 27, 2014 #108

    The Davy Crockett

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    Okay... ...so now I think the Viewliner IIs will be in revenue service before WMATA's Silver Line, DC's streetcars or SPUD sees its first EB taking on/disembarking passengers... ...Such exciting times we live in! :p
     
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  9. Mar 27, 2014 #109

    NW cannonball

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    So - the poor dumb local politicians, and the dumb loser local train users (and the frack oil shippers too), didn't have the wit to get enough lawyers to get an enforceable contract from BNSF. Amusing.

    BNSF has higher priorities, like getting as much cash, and delivering as little transport as possible, and fewer signalmen, and can't (won't) make the SPUD connection work. All us MSP people wonder.

    I used to admire the "amazing guru" but now that I'm losing Amtrak connectivity and losing our local investment in SPUD,

    Thanks, Warren, -- for using your monopoly to the hilt.

    There might be a backlash forming.
     
  10. Mar 27, 2014 #110

    montana mike

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    Mr. Buffett is not the lovable "teddy bear" his image makers portray him as for the media. Yes, he smiles a lot and says the right things, but he didn't get to where he is now by being Mr. Nice guy to everyone all of the time-not at all. He is a calculating, methodical and yes, sometimes harsh entrepreneur who has and does indeed step on toes...... I have seen his people in action in the real world first hand on several occasions and the "real WB" is often far different than what his minders make him out to be.
     
  11. Mar 27, 2014 #111

    neroden

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    If you read Buffett's annual reports for a while, he makes it very clear that one of his primary business strategies is to buy companies which have monopolies -- or "high barriers to entry" -- and get monopoly profits out of them.

    The reason he's a little smarter than average is that he understands that you don't keep monopoly profits by making everyone angry -- you keep monopoly profits by keeping people content enough that they *don't* start calling their Congressmen and demanding an alternative.

    This is why the current BNSF situation is out of character for him and indicates an error on his (or his managers') part. Buffett's style matches the former BNSF practice of offering good passenger service for gold-plated prices, such as they did initially for Northstar in Minneapolis.

    He's been making other mistakes lately too. Wells Fargo is a fraud shop which is probably going to be completely shut down in the next few years, now that it's been proven that they issued an *instruction manual* for defrauding the courts to large numbers of employees. He's still invested Berkshire Hathaway shareholders' money in this worthless stock. If the collapse of Wells Fargo tanks BRK stock, Buffett may actually get personally sued for that, since he was personally notified of Wells Fargo's criminal activities.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2014
  12. Apr 2, 2014 #112

    apok86

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  13. Apr 2, 2014 #113

    CHamilton

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    Apparently the May 7 date is back on again.

    Union Depot Officials Announce Amtrak Arrival Date and National Train Day Celebration

    April 2, 2014

     
  14. Apr 2, 2014 #114

    montana mike

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    Whoo hoo!! I look forward to seeing this "live" when I am on #8 in mid-May!
     
  15. Apr 2, 2014 #115
    Not a fan of the scheduled 8 minute dwell. That means I need to get myself to the station in a more timely manner. Also what is the impact on running with one fewer service stop?
     
  16. Apr 2, 2014 #116

    PRR 60

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    The service stop will continue to take place at the old Midway station. It will not be a passenger stop, but the other services including cutting the seasonal CHI-MSP car on and off will take place there.
     
  17. Apr 2, 2014 #117

    CHamilton

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    I would guess that the St. Paul stops will look like the dual CS stops in Oakland: one for passengers at Jack London Square, and the service stop, which can be used for tasks like connecting and disconnecting private cars. Having two stops in St. Paul is not ideal, but the newly-renovated SPUD is a beautiful building. And when the light rail opens in June, it will have excellent transit connections.
     
  18. Apr 2, 2014 #118

    bgiaquin

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    The servicing at Midway is only supposed to be short-term. They will move servicing to Union Depot sometime.
     
  19. Apr 2, 2014 #119

    neroden

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    The scheduling changes are much as I predicted, though a little different. From the uniondepot.org website:

    From St Paul to Chicago, they've cut 10 minutes off the schedule. From Chicago to St. Paul, they've cut 28 minutes off the schedule. Of course, all this time and more is added back onto the route west of St. Paul; it shows how slow the route from SPUD through Midway actually is. But for the MSP-CHI market, it's an improvement.

    ---

    Out of curiosity I looked something else up: the span of service for the Green Line (Central Corridor) light rail when it opens in June. The light rail is supposed to start running at 5 AM and stop running "around" 1 AM. If the Empire Builder is actually on time in MSP (yeah, I know, I know) then it's possible to reliably connect to the Green Line. Connections to urban rail systems are a known ridership booster for intercity lines. This is definitely nicer than walking from the Transfer Road station to the nearest bus stop (which was perfectly viable and even safe, but it's a poorly lit industrial district, so it doesn't *appear* safe).

    I also looked into which city buses will still be running that late. The #54 bus to the airport / Mall of America will also reliably be running that late. I don't think any of the other routes will be, but maybe the #21; it's hard to tell since all the bus routes are being modified when the Green Line opens.

    If delays are as they were for the last four weeks, however, the westbound EB would misconnect to the city bus & rail lines 4 out of every 28 days. :-( Amtrak needs to put some pressure on CP and/or Metra to run the trains less late. (Horribly, the eastbound EB would have misconnected once in the last 28 days, which is difficult given its scheduled arrival time. Hopefully this is going to get fixed by the temporary schedule alterations west of MSP which were discussed in other threads.)

    I don't really have an idea how much connecting traffic there will be between Amtrak and Megabus, Greyhound, or Jefferson Lines. I'm guessing not much. Jefferson Lines and Greyhound are only running a few of their Twin Cities buses into SPUD, and the schedules don't seem to enable any sensible trips; most of the ones running into SPUD are the ones which run parallel to the Empire Builder. I don't know how much benefit having bus and rail departing at different times on parallel routes from the same station will have for Amtrak; again I'm guessing not much.

    ---

    FWIW, if I'm waiting for a horribly-delayed eastbound Empire Builder, I'd much rather be waiting at/around SPUD than at/around Transfer Road.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 3, 2014
  20. Apr 3, 2014 #120

    TraneMan

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    Wonder since the stop at SPUD is short, will the people be able to step off at Midway for the fresh air/smoke?

    -Sent from my iPad using Amtrak Forum App.
     
  21. Apr 22, 2014 #121

    CHamilton

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    At least there will be local transit at the new station.

    Central Corridor trains to run 24/7 on trial basis


     
  22. Apr 25, 2014 #122
    If it hasn't been posted the Minnesota transportation museum will have GN SD45 400 and GN coach 1213 at SPUD for national train day plus shuttle busses to jackson street roundhouse and bandana square http://www.mtmuseum.org/?div=mtm&page=ntd
     
  23. May 29, 2014 #123

    edjbox

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    What will happen to the old Midway station now that the move to SPUD has been completed?
     
  24. May 29, 2014 #124

    neroden

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    It probably ends up with Minnesota Commercial Railway, who own everything around it.
     
  25. May 29, 2014 #125

    NorthShore

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    Who is Minnesota Commercial Railway?
     

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