Help Save the Empire Builder!
September 14, 2020
And all long distance trains by calling your US Senator -
•Your task is easy. Simply email your two Minnesota or Wisconsin U.S. Senators, contact information below.
•Request that they set Amtrak appropriation at the $5B pandemic relief level to support preservation of daily operational levels for the national network, and tell Amtrak to run all long distance trains daily.
Senator Amy Klobuchar contact form:
Senator Tina Smith contact form:
•Senator Tammy Baldwin
709 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-5653
•Senator Ron Johnson
328 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Key Supporting Points and Messaging-
- Reducing the long distance trains from daily to 3x a week service will disrupt millions of travelers who depend on these trains, and the connectivity of the national network will be broken
- Amtrak's metrics to restore daily service have been roundly criticized by RPA and others. See the RPA Hotline and website for more details
- Long distance trains have provided 45% of Amtrak's revenue during the pandemic thus far
- Since March, Northeast Corridor and state-supported corridor service revenues are down 90% compared with a 64% decline for the National Network.
- Long-distance ridership is down 62 percent compared with the same period last year
- Ridership on state supported and shorter routes through more urban areas is down more than 80 percent, according to an analysis by industry experts.
L-D routes retained 22% of year-over-year ridership
•Three times better than the 7% on short-distance state-supported services
•Nearly eight times better than the 3% on the NEC.
•From March through August, NEC hauled 30% of Amtrak’s passenger miles, State Corridors 30%, and LD routes hauled 39%
The main message based upon these facts is that it appears that Amtrak's move to reduce the long distance trains is more idealogical rather than pure economics
Remember, Former Amtrak Chief Richard Anderson's goal was to eliminate most of the long distance trains stating at one time: "We don't want to run alot of trains in the middle of nowhere where nobody lives." This is the excuse Amtrak needs, we need to block them, now!