Posts Tagged ‘Amtrak’s Texas Eagle’

Grant to Rebuild Bridge Used by Amtrak

June 16, 2019

A federal grant will be used to repair a bridge over the Mississippi River used by Amtrak trains.

The grant of $28.8 million was awarded by the Federal Railroad Administration to the

Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis to rebuild the MacArthur Bridge over the Mississippi River.

Completed in 1917, the bridge carries Amtrak’s Lincoln Service and Texas Eagle trains and it’s the primary rail crossing of the river at St. Louis.

The work will involve replacement of the main span girders on 677-foot structure.

The project cost of $57.3 million project will also be shared by the five Class I railroads serving St. Louis.

The grant will come from the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements program.

The FRA had in 2017 awarded $7.1 million to replace the west approach to the bridge, the Broadway Street Truss.

Officials said the rebuilding will extend the life of the bridge to 2085 and bring the structure up to current standards.

Suspension of Missouri Trains Extended to June 12

June 7, 2019

Amtrak on Thursday extended the suspension of its Missouri River Runner trains by another two days through June 12.

Affected are trains 311, 313, 314 and 316 between St. Louis and Kansas City.

Displaced passengers are being transported by chartered buses to all stations served by the trains.

The suspension began  on May 22 when host railroad Union Pacific increased freight traffic on the line due to flooding elsewhere on its system in the Midwest and South.

In the meantime, UP said Thursday that is has reopened its route between Chicago and Texas that is used in part by Amtrak’s Texas Eagle.

The Eagle has been suspended for the past week between St. Louis and Fort Worth, Texas.

River Runners Suspended Through June 10

June 4, 2019

Amtrak said today that it has extended the suspension of its Missouri River Runner service between St. Louis and Kansas City through June 10.

It cited continued heavy freight traffic on host railroad Union Pacific on the route of the River Runners, which has been the result of flooding in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.

The service suspension has been in effect since May 22. Passengers are being transported to and from all stations served by the trains via chartered buses that seek to operate close to the schedule of the trains they’ve replaced.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said it along with the Missouri Department of Transportation, which funds the River Runners, is continuing to monitor the situation on a daily basis.

UP officials said that flooding has receded slightly in some areas, but a level break  is expected to cause severe flooding at Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

Also out of service for now is Amtrak’s Texas Eagle, which has been suspended between St. Louis and Fort Worth, Texas.

Nos. 21 and 22 continue to operate between Chicago and St. Louis and between Fort Worth and San Antonio.

Flooding in Missouri briefly caused a suspension of Amtrak’s Southwest Chief last week, sending passengers to chartered buses.

Amtrak’s Missouri River Runners use the Sedalia Subdivision between Kansas City and Jefferson City, Missouri, and UP officials have been carefully watching flooding near that route.

Another UP route between Kansas City and Jefferson is closed due to flooding.

A report said the BNSF Ottumwa Subdivision, used by Amtrak’s California Zephyr, had water covering the tracks in Burlington, Iowa.

However, trains were operating through there at reduced speed and the Mississippi River had reportedly crested at 24.5 feet last Saturday.

A breached levy did not affect the BNSF tracks in Burlington because they are outside of the level system used to protect downtown.

BNSF personnel were relaying operating instructions to passing trains via radio because power to switches had been disrupted.

The flooding in the Midwest is the worst the region has seen since 1993.

Missouri River Runners Still Suspended

June 3, 2019

Although Amtrak has removed a notice from its website regarding suspension of its Missouri River Runners, the carrier has cancelled those trains for today.

For more than a week the River Runners, which operate between St. Louis and Kansas City, have been replaced by charter buses.

Host railroad Union Pacific has been diverting freight traffic to the route used by Nos. 311, 313, 314 and 316 due to flooding elsewhere on its system.

A check of the Amtrak website under “train status” found that all four trains are shown as being canceled.

The Texas Eagle between St. Louis and Fort Worth, Texas, has also been cancelled this week for similar reasons. Nos. 21 and 22 are still operating between Chicago and St. Louis, and between Fort Worth and San Antonio, Texas.

 

I-20 Council Working With Amtrak on New Service

June 3, 2019

The I-20 Corridor Council met last week in Grambling, Louisiana, to discuss their efforts to institute Amtrak service between Marshall, Texas, and Meridian, Mississippi.

The ground said it is working with Amtrak to launch the service, which the Council hopes will be one daily roundtrip.

Those trains would connect with the Texas Eagle in Marshall and the Crescent in Meridian. The trains would also cross the route of the City of New Orleans in Jackson, Mississippi.

“If we don’t do anything, then 20 years or 30 years, when these travel times have doubled as a result of the lack of expansion capacity on Interstate 20, the people will look back and if they are a participant, they would say ‘well yeah that was a good idea. I’m glad we did it,’” said Council Chairman Judge Richard Anderson.

A study conducted in 2017 estimated that getting the service launched would cost between $60 million to $80 million.

It is not clear from where that funding would come.

Flooding Leads to More Service Suspensions

June 2, 2019

Amtrak’s Texas Eagle has been canceled between St. Louis and Fort Worth, Texas, through June 7 due to flooding.

In the interim, Nos. 21 and 22 will continue operating between Fort Worth and San Antonio, Texas, and between Chicago and St. Louis.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said the flooding has increased freight traffic on host railroad Union Pacific. The same issue led to the suspension of Missouri River Runner service through June 2 between St. Louis and Kansas City.

No substitute transportation is being provided to the stations between St. Louis and Fort Worth although Amtrak said that Trinity Railway Express offers commuter train service between Fort Worth and Dallas.

Amtrak said some tickets are available for passengers wishing to travel an alternate routing between Illinois or Missouri and Texas using the Southwest Chief and Heartland Flyer  via an Amtrak Thruway Bus connecting Newton, Kan., and Oklahoma City (Routes 8903 & 8904).

Track Work Disrupts Texas Eagle

March 22, 2019

Operations of Amtrak’s Texas Eagle are being disrupted through today (March 22) due to track work being performed in Texas by Union Pacific.

Passengers traveling between Texarkana, Arkansas, and Mineola, Texas, will ride chartered buses.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said Trains 21/421 will detour between Texarkana and Mineola missing stops at Marshall and Longview.

Passengers to those points, and also also Shreveport, Louisiana, will detrain at Mineola and board Amtrak Thruway Bus 6121 to their destination. Bus 6121 will originate at Mineola instead of Longview.

Passengers scheduled to connect with Thruway service at Longview will also detrain at Mineola. Thruway Bus 6021 to Houston will board passengers at Mineola instead of Longview.

Passengers scheduled to board at Shreveport, Marshall and Longview will be picked up by Thruway Bus 6421 and carried to Mineola to board Train 21/421.

Train 21/421 may be delayed up to 15 to 20 minutes at Mineola to hold for connecting buses.

Marshall Station Elevator Our of Service

March 14, 2019

Amtrak has announced that the station elevator in Marshall, Texas, is out of service until further notice.

The elevators is located inside the station, which is served by Amtrak’s Chicago-San Antonio Texas Eagle.

Passengers requiring an elevator are advised to board at the Longview station, approximately 30 minutes west of Marshall.

Those using the stairway may need to allow extra time to get to the boarding platform.

Waiting Room Hours Expand in Alton

February 27, 2019

Amtrak has expanded the hours that the waiting room is open at its station in Alton, Illinois.

The waiting room in the Alton Regional Multimodal Transportation center will now be open until 7 p.m. Previously, it had closed at 4:30 p.m.

Passengers were still able to board trains after the waiting room closed, but often had to stand in the cold if they were waiting for the last train of the day to Chicago.

The waiting room opens at 5 a.m. for the station that is served by Chicago-St. Louis Lincoln Service trains and the Chicago-San Antonio Texas Eagle.

Another change was the reinstatement of checked baggage and small package shipping service for the Texas Eagle riders.

Checked baggage had ended upon the closure of the College Avenue station more than a year ago.

The City of Alton has agreed to provide security for the station in the evenings.

Track Work to Affect Texas Eagle

February 14, 2019

Track work being conducted by Union Pacific will disrupt operations of Amtrak’s Texas Eagle between Feb. 24 and March 10.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said that during that time Train No. 21 will detour between Texarkana, Arkansas, and Mineola, Texas, with passengers bound for intermediate stops between those cities riding a bus.

That includes stations in Marshall and Longview, Texas. It also affects passengers riding a thruway bus to Shreveport, Louisiana, that connects with the Eagle at Longview.

Affected passengers will detrain at Mineola and board Amtrak Thruway Bus 6121 to their destination. Bus 6121 will originate at Mineola instead of Longview.

Amtrak said that Train No. 21 may be delayed up to 15 to 20 minutes at Mineola to hold for connecting buses.