Posts Tagged ‘Amtrak in New Orleans’

Zeta Prompts Service Cancellations to New Orleans

October 28, 2020

Amtrak has canceled all service to New Orleans due to Tropical Storm Zeta with no alternative transportation being provided.

Affected are the Sunset Limited, Crescent and City of New Orleans.

The Sunset Limited will operate only between Los Angeles and San Antonio, a move that began with the train that departed Los Angeles on Tuesday (Oct. 27).

Train No. 2 will originate in San Antonio on Thursday (Oct. 29).

The Crescent will operate between New York and Atlanta starting with the train that originated in New York on Tuesday.

The next train from Atlanta to New York was to depart on Thursday.

The City of New Orleans has been canceled for the length of its route.

Amtrak said alternative service is being provided between Chicago and Carbondale, Illinois, by the northbound Saluki and southbound Illini.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said passengers whose travel has been disrupted should contact it at 800-USA-RAIL.There will be no change or cancellation fees imposed.

Hurricane Delta Leads to Amtrak Service Cancellations to and from New Orleans

October 10, 2020

Amtrak has canceled service due to Hurricane Delta, which made landfall on the Louisiana coast on Saturday morning and is expected to affect New Orleans.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said the Sunset Limited that left Los Angeles on Friday will terminate in San Antonio, Texas on Sunday.

The westbound Sunset Limited will originate in San Antonio on Oct. 13 and operate to Los Angeles as scheduled.

No substitute transportation is available between New Orleans and San Antonio.

The Crescent that left New York on Oct. 9 will terminate today in Atlanta with no substitute service being offered between there and New Orleans.

The northbound Crescent will originate in Atlanta through Sunday.

The City of New Orleans was canceled on Friday and Saturday with no substitute service south of Carbondale, Illinois.

Passengers planning to ride Nos. 58 and 59 between Chicago and Carbondale were being accommodated on the northbound Saluki or southbound Illini.

Hurricane Sally Disrupts New Orleans Service

September 15, 2020

Amtrak has canceled service to New Orleans due to Hurricane Sally, with no alternate transportation being provided.

The northbound City of New Orleans that was to depart New Orleans today (Sept. 15) has been canceled.

The southbound Crescent is terminating in Atlanta through today will originate there through Sept. 16.

The eastbound Sunset Limited will terminate in San Antonio today and originate there today as well.


Ceremony Marks Start of NOLA Station Project

September 10, 2019

A ceremony held recently marked the ceremonial start of platform rebuilding at New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal.

The $6.643 million project will bring the boarding platforms in the terminal to ADA standards as well as expand the canopy covering the platform.

Other work will upgrade the air, water and other systems, place fences and gates to improve security, and create facilities to permit trains to be used for evacuation.

Funding for the project is split among a $3.7 million federal grant, $2 million in matching funds from the City of New Orleans and the New Orleans Building Commission, and $943,000 from Amtrak.

New Orleans is terminus of three Amtrak long-distance routes linking Chicago (City of New Orleans), Los Angeles (Sunset Limited) and New York (Crescent).

CONO Resumes Running to New Orleans

August 6, 2019

Operating as train 1158 for one day only, the northbound City of New Orleans passes through Pesotum, Illinois, en route to Chicago. The train at the time was 40 minutes late.

Amtrak’s City of New Orleans resumed operating between New Orleans and Jackson, Mississippi, on July 30.

Nos. 58 and 59 had been originating and terminating in Jackson for several weeks due to flooding in the lower Mississippi River valley that closed the Bonnet Carre Spillway.

During that time passengers rode a chartered bus south of Jackson.

However, track work by host railroad Canadian National has Nos. 58 and 59 originating and terminating this week in Memphis, Tennessee, through Aug. 8

In a service advisory, Amtrak said alternate transportation will be provided between Memphis and Jackson, but there will be no alternate transportation to the missed station stops of Marks, Greenwood or Yazoo City in Mississippi.

NOLA Service Restorations Underway

July 16, 2019

Amtrak said service to New Orleans will be restored this week now that Hurricane Barry has passed.

The Sunset Limited between New Orleans and Los Angeles will resume with the eastbound departure of Train 2 from Los Angeles on July 17, and the westbound departure of Train 1 from New Orleans on July 20.

The New York-New Orleans Crescent resumed with the westbound departure of Train 19 from New York on July 15 and the eastbound departure of Train 20 from New Orleans on July 16.

The Chicago-New Orleans City of New Orleans resumed normal service southbound on July 15 and northbound on July 16.

However, Nos. 58 and 59 are only operating between Chicago and Jackson, Mississippi, because host railroad Canadian National is still not allowing Amtrak to operate south of Jackson due to flooding.

Passengers between Jackson and New Orleans are riding chartered buses.

End of Track at NOUPT

June 24, 2019


Depending on your perspective, this is either the end of the route of Amtrak’s City of New Orleans or the first few feet of the route north to Chicago.

The view is from the rear car on No. 58, which is boarding at New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal.

The photo was made in March 2012.

CN Won’t Allow Amtrak to Extend Nos. 58/59

June 3, 2019

Amtrak has been pressing Canadian National without success to allow the City of New Orleans to operate as far south as Hammond, Louisiana, or Macomb, Mississippi.

For a few weeks Nos. 58 and 59 have been operating between Chicago and Jackson, Mississippi, after CN banned operation of the train over the Bonnet Carre Spillway near New Orleans.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened the spillway in an effort to mitigate the effects of flooding in the region.

However, CN freight trains have continued to operate over the spillway. This is not the first time that CN has not allowed Amtrak trains to operate over the spillway while it was open.

While the spillway is open Amtrak passengers bound for points south of Jackson have been riding a chartered bus.

The Rail Passengers Association said it has learned CN has denied Amtrak requests to allow the City of New Orleans to operate farther south.

However, the railroad has apparently agreed to allow Amtrak to operate the City to New Orleans and across the spillway if no passengers were on board.

Although CN has cited safety concerns for its not allowing the City to operate with passengers over the spillway while it is open, RPA speculated CN”s behavior might be rooted in negative public attention that it has received following Amtrak’s posting of report cars on its website in which it grades host railroads on their on-time performance.

RPA noted that CN received a D- on the latest report card.

In a service advisory posted on the Amtrak website, the carrier said the use of buses between Jackson and New Orleans would continue “until further notice.”

Train Time in New Orleans

June 30, 2018

Three times a day, Amtrak personnel announce the boarding of a train at New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal, the terminus of the City of New Orleans, Crescent and Sunset Limited.

The latter operates only three days a week, departing on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, but the City and Crescent depart daily.

Of the three trains, the City of the New Orleans is the only one to depart NOUPT in the afternoon.

In the photo above, it is March 2012 and passengers are waiting for the boarding announcement of No. 58 to Chicago and all intermediate stops.

Reminder of a Past Discarded Business Plan

May 9, 2018

I’m not sure why Amtrak hung onto these two express cars. I spotted them at New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal in March 2012.

Amtrak got out of the mail and express business in the early 2000s and sold or otherwise disposed of many of the cars devoted to that service.

Perhaps these cars have not yet been sold and were awaiting a decision on what to do with them.

I recall a time when cars such as these were common sights on many long-distance trains.