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The meeting and auction in Centralia went very well. If you were able to attend in person or electronically, thank you! We’re sorry if you couldn’t join us, but we look forward to seeing you again soon. We had some technical difficulties, so a recording will not be available. However, the agenda and links to meeting materials are available here:

"The City of Anoka has formally requested that Amtrak trains stop in their city. All Aboard Minnesota endorses this request. As two thirds of the Twin Cities metropolitan population lives in Minneapolis and surrounding suburbs, a stop in the northern portion of the metro would make it easier for these residents to access Amtrak trains than St. Paul Union Depot."

Is this true? Has service on the old Pioneer route disappeared? "It appears that Greyhound is no longer operating the direct bus from Denver to Portland OR. I noticed several weeks ago that the tracker said they were using several busses on this route. However now when you try to book a direct ticket it routes you via Billings MT with a crazy 4 transfers."

We look forward to seeing you at the AAWA meeting and auction tomorrow in Centralia. Stop by early to join us for lunch at the Olympic Club, and get your bids in for the auction.

If you can’t attend in person, and you’d like to bid on auction items, you are welcome to get a friend to bid for you. You can still register at

"The Island Corridor Foundation, the non-profit organization which owns the former Esquimalt & Nanaimo rail line on Vancouver Island, has proposed a C$431 plan to for a commuter and freight rail service between Victoria and Courtenay, B.C."

"A slim majority of Minnesota state senators are attempting to stop the progress on the Northern Lights Express project (NLX), the proposed passenger rail service between Minneapolis and Duluth. Project advocates say that, while the Senate’s action is disappointing, the project is still very much in reach due to strong support in the Minnesota House and Governor’s office."

Federal Railroad Administration Publishes Quarterly Report on the Performance and Service Quality of Amtrak Intercity Passenger Rail Operations

"The benefit to rural areas is one of the criteria for weighing potential corridor service…Recent efforts by Montana’s Big Sky Passenger Authority to run trains on the route of the North Coast Hiawatha…could also get a boost…The clear front-runners will be states and operating authorities who have…a local match…Mere “expressions of interest” won’t be nearly enough."

Among many other issues called out in Amtrak's report, "Senior IT officials told us the assumption to relocate or replace these IT staff was not feasible in 2019 or now, primarily because of the significant operational disruption that would result from losing so many people with company-specific technology knowledge."

A useful "BIL Navigator" shows Federal funding opportunities. We'll want to use this to plan our advocacy.

More Canadian coverage of Cascades postponement. "While [WSDOT and ODOT] said they understood the challenges staff shortages can bring, they said there were workarounds that could be put in place to re-establish the Cascades service."

Postponement of Cascades service generating a lot of press, from several Seattle TV stations to national news in Canada.

Does anyone at Amtrak really care about anything beyond the Northeast Corridor? Do the states of Washington and Oregon care about passenger rail?

"Amtrak informed the states of WA and OR that the popular Amtrak Cascades train service north of Seattle will not resume until late 2022 due to Amtrak staffing shortages.
"WSDOT and ODOT expressed extreme dissatisfaction with this plan and urged Amtrak to at least begin offering service a few days a week on an interim basis until full service can resume in December 2022."

From the Seattle area: "In order to transition to the new ORCA system, fares will not be collected between 3 a.m. Saturday, May 14, and 2:59 a.m. Monday, May 16, on most area transit systems…Ride your heart out."

"All Aboard Northwest is…advocating for expanding passenger rail service to underserved or unserved communities in the Pacific Northwest, the Mountain West, and the Midwest. Formally launched earlier this year, it’s involved in lobbying efforts, community engagement and education…on how passenger access would affect communities." Repost by KUNC in Colorado.

"It’s time for the Minnesota Legislature, Gov. Tim Walz, business and labor, environmental groups, and consumers to go to bat for the Northern Lights Express — 152 miles of job-generating, higher-speed, intercity passenger rail running between Duluth and Minneapolis four times daily."

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Rail chat at! Discussing a vision for a comprehensive, long-distance, passenger and freight rail network, with seamless connections to other modes of transportation, to create economic, environmental and equity benefits.