Posts Tagged ‘Eugene Oregon’

Cascades Service to Increase May 24

April 28, 2021

Additional Cascades Service roundtrips are set to begin service May 24.

Amtrak will restore three of four Seattle-Portland roundtrips and both Portland-Eugene roundtrips.

For more than a year the corridor has been limited to a single daily Seattle-Eugene roundtrip.

The trains will use a combination of Talgo Series 8 transets owned by the Oregon Department of Transportation and Amtrak owned Horizon equipment.

An additional full-corridor departure will leave Seattle at 7:25 a.m. and return from Eugene at 4:40 p.m., arriving at 11 p.m.

The new schedule has Train 507 departing Seattle at 6:10 p.m. and its equipment leaving Portland the next day at at noon.

The current schedule has a Talgo departing Seattle (No. 505) at 2:20 p.m. and leaving Eugene the next morning (No. 500) at 5:30 a.m. and arriving in Seattle at 11:50 a.m.

State transportation officials had wanted to shift the departure of No. 500 from Eugene to 8 a.m. but host railroads Union Pacific and BNSF would not allow it, Washington Department of Transportation Communications Manager Janet Matkin told Trains magazine.

Because the U.S.-Canadian border remains closed to non-essential travel, Cascades service between Seattle and Vancouver remains suspended.

At present, Amtrak operates a Thruway bus to Bellingham, Washington.

Washington state transportation officials said one Seattle-Vancouver roundtrip could be restored in July.

An official said Amtrak crews are qualified on the route and if the border opens sooner rail service could resume before July.

No date has yet been given as to when Amtrak will resume using the Point Defiance Bypass south of Tacoma.

Officials are eying late summer or early fall but said it is up to host railroad Sound Transit.

The public transit agency conducted testing on the route earlier this year and has been working through a crew qualification process.

Matkin said the Cascades will continue to operate at 50 percent capacity in compliance with Washington and Oregon’s ‘Ride Safe’ Initiatives.

Limited food and beverage service may begin at the same time or soon after the May 24 schedule expansion.

Changes Made in Oregon Thruway Bus Schedules

February 23, 2021

The Oregon Department of Transportation’s POINT Amtrak Thruway bus service has changed some of its schedules.

Bus 5504 is now operating 1 hour and 10 minutes earlier, departing Eugene station at 7 a.m.

Bus 5506 is now running 1 hour and 5 minutes earlier, departing Eugene at 1:10 p.m. while Bus 5518 will operate five minutes earlier, departing Eugene at 11:45 am.

Bus 5503 will operate 25 minutes earlier, departing Portland station at noon while Bus 5547will operate 30 minutes earlier, departing Portland at 5 p.m.

Other POINT bus schedules from Portland are unaffected by the changes.

Multi-ride tickets are available for use on both Amtrak Cascades and POINT services between Portland and Eugene.

Thruway Service Expands in Oregon

November 27, 2020

Amtrak has begun start selling Interline Thruway Service in Oregon from Eugene to Florence and Eugene to Oakridge.

The buses are operated by Pacific Crest Lines.

Buses 8191, 8192, 8193, 8194, 8195 and 8196 will offer service between Eugene and Oakridge, with an intermediate stop at Westfir.

Buses 8612, 8613, 8614 and 8615 will offer service between Eugene and Florence, with intermediate stops at Veneta, Mapleton and Florence (Three Rivers Casino).

Road Work Affects Cascades Thruway Bus Schedules

May 19, 2019

Construction on Interstate 5 in Oregon will affect Thruway bus service provided by Oregon POINT bus service to Cascades Service trains between Eugene and Portland.

Amtrak has announced schedule changes that take effect May 20 and extend through Sept. 30.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said the changed will allow time for connections to the Cascades trains.

Bus 5502 will depart Eugene Willamette Station 15 minutes earlier at 5:15 a.m., on Saturday and Sunday. The Eugene station will not be open for the departure of Bus 5502 and no checked baggage will be available for Bus 5502 at any stop.

Bus 5504 will depart Eugene 1 hour earlier, at 7:25 a.m. Monday through Friday.

Bus 5506 will depart Eugene 30 minutes earlier at 2 p.m. Bus 5518 will depart Eugene 1 hour earlier at 10:55 a.m.

Bus 5528 will depart Eugene 1 hour earlier at 12:15 p.m. Bus 5544 will depart Eugene 15 minute earlier at 7:15 a.m.

Bus 5541 will depart Portland Union Station 1 hour earlier at 6 a.m. Passengers boarding at Woodburn, Salem or Albany should check for updated schedule changes to their times at those points prior to travel.

Fallen Trees Strand Coast Starlight 3 Days

February 27, 2019

Fallen trees created a chain of events that led to an ordeal for Coast Starlight passengers last weekend that lasted for three days.

The southbound Coast Starlight was halted near Oakridge, Oregon, after trees fell on Union Pacific rails in southern Oregon.

That occurred on Sunday but it wasn’t until Tuesday that the passengers were moved to Eugene with Union Pacific ES44AC No. 5478 pulling the train there.

The lead locomotive of the Starlight struck a tree and became disabled at about 6:19 p.m on Sunday.

Closed highways precluded evacuating the stranded passengers, but the train continued to have head end power for lights and heat for the 184 passengers.

Heavy snow also had to be plowed from nine miles of track before the Starlight could be moved back to Eugene.

Amtrak said during the time the Starlight was stranded it had ample food and beverages and that passengers received complimentary meals.

It is Amtrak’s practice to stock trains with an emergency food supply in the event of a situation such as this.

However, passengers who contacted news media organizations via cell phone reported that the food had run out by Tuesday morning.

The UP rescue locomotive had arrived on Monday night.

“We sincerely regret the extended delay customers on the southbound Coast Starlight experienced due to extreme weather issues while traveling with Amtrak,” said Amtrak Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Scot Naparstek in a statement to Trains magazine.

“With more than a foot of heavy snow and numerous trees blocking the track, we made every decision in the best interest of the safety of our customers during the unfortunate sequence of events.

“With local power outages and blocked roads, it was decided the safest place for our customers was to remain on the train where we were able to provide food, heat, electricity and toilets.”

Naparstek said Amtrak will offer the stranded passengers refunds “and other compensation as appropriate.”

In the meantime, the Coast Starlight that left Los Angeles on Sunday was held at Dunsmuir, California.

Amtrak later sent that train back to Los Angeles with its passengers still on board. It reached Los Angeles at 4:45 a.m. on Tuesday.

The scheduled northbound departure of the Coast Starlight from Los Angeles was cancelled.

Some passengers affected by the service disruption were rebooked on San Joaquins, Pacific Surfliners, Capitols, or Thruway buses.

On Tuesday and Wednesday the Starlight was to operate between Los Angeles and Sacramento, California.

Amtrak Cascades trains did not operate between Portland and Eugene due to a fire on a BNSF bridge over the Columbia River on Tuesday.

Oregon DOT Seeks Public Comment on Proposal

November 30, 2018

Public comment is being solicited by the Oregon Department of Transportation on a draft environmental impact statement concerning a proposed passenger-rail service expansion between Portland and the Eugene-Springfield area.

Public hearings will be held in December in Oregon City, Albany, Salem and Eugene. Comments can also be posted on the agency’s website through Dec. 18.

The proposal outlines two routes for the 125-mile service.

One alternative is to use the existing Amtrak Cascades route while another route would be established along Interstate 5 between Springfield and Oregon City.

Oregon transportation officials and the Federal Railroad Administration have expressed a preference for the existing Cascades route.

ODOT has been studying ways to improve the frequency, convenience, speed and reliability of intercity passenger-rail service between Portland and Eugene.

Aside from Cascades Service trains, the route also is served by the Seattle-Los Angeles Coast Starlight.

Eugene Bus Stop Temporarily Moved

June 1, 2018

Due to sporting and graduation-related events scheduled to occur at the University of Oregon from June 3 – 9 and June 15 – 17, street access to the regular MTR Western Thruway bus stop near the Student Recreation Center will be blocked.

On those dates the Amtrak Thruway buses will instead stop about four blocks away, at Parking Lot 18 on the northeast corner of 18th Avenue & Alder Street, near the Clinical Services building.

Eugene is served by Amtrak’s Coast Starlight and Cascades Service.