Southern Rail Commission

Will New Orleans-Baton Rouge Passenger Rail Service Return?

Canadian Pacific is committed to establishing New Orleans-Baton Rouge passenger service if the railroad’s proposed merger with Kansas City Southern is approved, Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning and Technology Transformation James Clements told Louisiana officials on Dec. 8.

BART and Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority are embarking on the Link21 program that will connect BART with the region’s intercity, commuter and high speed passenger rail systems while also “connecting people sustainably to employment opportunities and affordable housing throughout the 21-county Northern California Megaregion.” (Link21Program)

Transit Briefs: BART; TTC/TransLink; SRC

The San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) has awarded ICF a contract for up to $30 million to provide environmental services for Link21. In addition, Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) and Vancouver’s TransLink are installing antimicrobial copper coatings on high-touch vehicle services as part of a pilot; and the Southern Rail Commission (SRC) will award federal grants to four cities for passenger rail station upgrades in anticipation of Amtrak’s Gulf Coast service restoration.

STB Will Consider Amtrak Gulf Coast Case

The Surface Transportation Board (STB) on Aug. 6 concluded that the matter of Amtrak providing Gulf Coast service over host freight railroads CSX and Norfolk Southern (NS) “is ripe for adjudication.”

FRA Acting Administrator Amit Bose

FRA’s Bose Backs Interstate Rail Compacts

Interstate rail compacts “deliver results and hold tremendous promise in advancing passenger rail development,” FRA Acting Administrator Amit Bose said during a recent quarterly meeting of the Southern Rail Commission (SRC).

In late February, Amtrak confirmed its intention to begin service between New Orleans and Mobile in 2022. But a stakeholder agreement had not yet been reached.

Gulf Coast Service? Not So Fast, Say CSX, NS

“Unripe.” That is what CSX and Norfolk Southern (NS) have called Amtrak’s application with the Surface Transportation Board (STB) asking for an order requiring the freight railroads to permit access for twice daily round-trip passenger service between New Orleans and Mobile, starting on or about Jan. 1, 2022.

Amtrak has confirmed its intention to begin service between New Orleans, La., and Mobile, Ala., in 2022. But a stakeholder agreement has not yet been reached. (Amtrak)

New Orleans-Mobile Amtrak Service in Development

There is a good deal of controversy swirling around proposed new intercity passenger rail service between New Orleans, La., and Mobile, Ala., involving Amtrak, two Class I railroads, a multi-state agency and a major Alabama port.

Wicker establishes rail service restoration task force

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) on Feb. 16, 2016 announced that a new group has been established to study the return of passenger rail service between New Orleans, La. to Orlando, Fla. along the Gulf Coast. This line of service was lost after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.