Posts Tagged ‘Jackson Mississippi’

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.

Meeting in Jackson

July 19, 2019

Amtrak’s City of New Orleans uses tracks of Canadian National (nee Illinois Central) for most of its 934-mile trip between the Windy City and the Crescent City.

So passengers aboard Nos. 58 and 59 who are inclined to watch such things are going to see a lot of CN trains along the way.

In the image above a southbound CN train passes the station in Jackson, Mississippi, while No. 59 does its station work in March 2012.

CONO Passengers Back on the Bus to NOLA

May 18, 2019

Passengers riding Amtrak’s City of New Orleans are back on board a bus due to flooding in the South.

In a service advisory Amtrak said passengers will ride a bus between New Orleans and Jackson, Mississippi, until further notice.

The advisory said Canadian National has closed the route used by Nos. 58 and 59 due to a planned emergency flood control endeavor.

It is the second time this year CONO passengers have had to ride a bus between New Orleans and Jackson due to flooding.

Amtrak said train service will be reinstated as soon as possible.

Affected are passengers traveling to and from the intermediate stations in Hazlehurst, Brookhaven, McComb, Mississippi; and Hammond, Louisiana.

Passengers departing from New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal are being advised to arrive at the station by 12:15 p.m. to board the charter buses.

Hello Jackson

April 11, 2019

I’m standing at the end of the last car on Amtrak’s northbound City of New Orleans as it arrives into Jackson, Mississippi, for its daily stop en route to Chicago.

This is a crew change point and the train dwells here for several minutes.

In my experience, Jackson also features a fairly high turnover of coach passengers. That is far less the case in the sleeping car.

Jackson station is a combination of the old and the new. The site is the former Jackson Union Station, which primarily was used by the Illinois Central.

Yet at the platform level it is obvious that the station has been modernized.

In the Amtrak era Jackson has never had more than two trains a day, Nos. 58 and 59. Both are scheduled to arrive during daytime hours.

But even on the eve of Amtrak, the passenger train count wasn’t much higher, being limited to the IC’s City of New Orleans and Panama Limited.

Amtrak has used both of those train names at various times over the years with CONO seemingly the name on which the carrier has settled.

Like so many cities served by Amtrak, things don’t seem to change much with the train service. But at least they still have something to ride.

CONO Passengers Riding Bus Due to Flooding

March 3, 2019

Passengers aboard Amtrak’s City of New Orleans are riding buses between New Orleans and Jackson, Mississippi, after host railroad Canadian Railroad closed the route due to flooding.

In a service advisory, Amtrak said the busing will continue until further notice and that rail service will resume as soon as possible.

The buses will stop at the affected intermediate stations of, Hazlehurst, Brookhaven and McComb in Mississippi, and Hammond, Louisiana.

Northbound passengers are being asked to arrive at New Orleans Union Passenger Terminal by 12:15 p.m. to board the buses, which will depart at 1 p.m.

No. 58 is scheduled to depart New Orleans at 1:45 p.m.

The City continues to operate normally between Chicago and Jackson with the equipment from No. 59 turning at Jackson to make up No. 58 on the same day.

It is the third time in the past four years that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened floodgates on the Bonnet Carre Spillway south of Hammond to enable waters from the Mississippi River to flow into Lake Pontchartrain.

CN crosses the spillway on a wood trestle and has closed the bridge as a precaution against times when open floodgates release heavy flows of water.

The Mississippi River isn’t expected to crest until mid-March due to extensive snow melt from the north.

With the Corps of Engineers planning to open more spillway gates, the busing of passengers for Nos. 58 and 59 could continue for some time.

In previous years Amtrak has turned the City at Hammond, but has chosen Jackson because it saves operating costs from not having to pay a crew to operate the train between Jackson and Hammond.

Getting a Better View

October 19, 2018

An Amtrak car attendant perches on the step box as he looks down the platform at Jackson, Mississippi, during a station stop for the northbound City of New Orleans.

Jackson is one of the busiest stops for Nos. 58 and 59, but most of the passengers in the distance are boarding one of the coaches and not holding sleeping car tickets.

 

Farewell to Jackson

May 17, 2018

I’m standing at the rear of Amtrak train No. 58, the northbound City of New Orleans, as it leaves the station at Jackson, Mississippi.

I’ve been through this station aboard the CONO a few times, but never seen the station other than the platform.

The waiting room and ticket office are at ground level, but the tracks are elevated through downtown Jackson.

My understanding is that this is the site of the former Jackson Union Station. The Illinois Central was the last railroad to have passenger service here in the pre-Amtrak era.

There were four trains a day on April 30, 1971, the IC City of New Orleans and the Panama Limited.

The next day the train count fell to two where it has remained ever since.

City Might Take Over Jackson Union Station

April 28, 2017

Plagued by security issues and a deteriorating physical structure, the Amtrak station in Jackson, Mississippi, may be getting a new owner.

The Jackson Redevelopment Authority Board of Commissioners, which owns Union Station, has asked the City of Jackson to consider taking over the downtown transit hub, which serves Amtrak’s City of New Orleans, and Greyhound and local buses.

The Redevelopment Authority said that among the problems at Union Station are criminal activity, burglaries, leaking roofs, security issues and financial concerns.

City Councilman Kenneth Stokes cited these issues in saying that the future of Union Station is in jeopardy.

“We cannot wait until Union Station completely falls down before we do something,” Stokes said. “We’re still on some solid ground. Let’s take it over now, let’s make the necessary repairs and bring Union Station back up.”

Stokes said the police department might have to establish a substation at the depot to ensure that it is safe.

He said he will put the matter of a possible transfer of ownership and title of Union Station to the city on the next city council agenda for discussion.

CN Track Work to Disrupte SB CONO Schedule

April 3, 2017

The schedule of the southbound City of New Orleans will change between April 3 and May 19 in order to accommodate Canadian National track work.

In a service advisory Amtrak said No. 59 will depart Jackson, Mississippi, at 1:20 p.m., which is two hours later than the normal schedule.

Departure times at all stations between Jackson and New Orleans will be two hours later.

The modified schedule will be in effect on the following dates:

 

  • April 3 through April 14
  • April 17 through April 28
  • May 1 through May 12
  • May 15 through May 19

Train 59 will operate on its normal schedule from Chicago to Jackson. The operations of northbound No. 58 will not be affected.