Promoting passenger trains as a transportation alternative in Florida since 1983.  We are citizens who advocate for Amtrak, commuter rail, intercity rail and transit for Florida's future.

The Silver Rail Blog

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  • 29 Mar 2019 9:07 AM | Jackson McQuigg (Administrator)

    In testimony to Congress this week, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, citing Amtrak President/CEO Richard Anderson, stated that Amtrak's long distance trains are "unsustainable" and implied that they are little used.

    Florida passengers of busy long distance trains like the Silver Meteor, Silver Star, and the Auto Train will find these claims hard to believe, but Chao's comments do support President Trump's FY 2020 budget proposal, which envisions replacing the national network with subsidized bus service running on federally-subsidized highways.

    Good coverage of her testimony is found here in the Missoula Current newspaper: https://missoulacurrent.com/government/2019/03/daines-transportation-funding/ 

    Perhaps most troubling is that for the very first time in its history, proposed cuts to Amtrak service are being supported by claims from its very own management.  

    If you care about Florida's Amtrak trains, please contact Florida's U.S. Senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, as well as your Congressman and tell them you support Amtrak's national network trains. If you need their contact information, use this link: https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials/

    Subsidized bus service or disconnected corridor trains around the country are not what is right for the country or for Florida.

     --Jackson McQuigg 

  • 10 Mar 2019 11:56 AM | Jackson McQuigg (Administrator)

    And the skeptics are extremely concerned. 

    From Railway Age Magazine:

    https://www.railwayage.com/passenger/at-amtrak-its-no-longer-1950/ 

    --Jackson McQuigg 

  • 02 Mar 2019 9:11 AM | Jackson McQuigg (Administrator)

    Congressman Darren Soto wants more SunRail through parts of Polk County and advocates for it in this recent editorial in the Lakeland Ledger:

    https://www.theledger.com/opinion/20190302/polk-perspective-sunrail-phase-3-polks-path-to-future-mobility 

    Polk's TPO has studied expanding SunRail further into Polk, so the support comes at a critical time:

    http://polktpo.com/what-we-do/our-planning-documents/sunrail-feasibility-study 

    Soto sees the merit in connecting SunRail to Brightline's planned Tampa-Orlando extension. There is no mention in his editorial of extending SunRail to the Amtrak station in Downtown Lakeland.

    --Jackson McQuigg 

  • 02 Mar 2019 9:04 AM | Jackson McQuigg (Administrator)

    We strongly support the expansion of Brightline. FCRP's President, Steve Sayles, was at the hearing in Tallahassee to speak in support of the financing for Brightline.

    From the Miami Herald:

    https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/article227014359.html 

    --Jackson McQuigg 

     

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