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Old 08-08-2014, 08:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
That's what most Amtrak stations more or less resemble today...dirt and a warehouse. Which might help explain why much of the public seems to have a very negative impression of train travel today. They knocked down nearly all the old grand train stations - that made you feel like a king when walked into them, and replaced them with the type of buildings that might be mistaken for a Public self-storage facility.


'One entered the city like a God, one scuttles in now like a rat.'
- one historian's comment in reference to the old and new Penn stations
Agreed. Passenger rail used to not only be functional and useful, but also beautiful and glamorous. Of course, the planners and developers of the 50s and 60s decided to bring about "the future!" and tear apart our mass transit systems, tear down the historic stations, and discard the passenger rail system (and a lot of the freight rail system). Interstate highways were everything you would ever need! They would bring about a new golden age for our nation! Not quite. Now instead we have decaying cities, annihilated neighborhoods, traffic congestion, etc. What a great future.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
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Old 08-09-2014, 02:56 PM
 
9,520 posts, read 14,850,771 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Agreed. Passenger rail used to not only be functional and useful, but also beautiful and glamorous. Of course, the planners and developers of the 50s and 60s decided to bring about "the future!" and tear apart our mass transit systems, tear down the historic stations, and discard the passenger rail system (and a lot of the freight rail system). Interstate highways were everything you would ever need! They would bring about a new golden age for our nation! Not quite. Now instead we have decaying cities, annihilated neighborhoods, traffic congestion, etc. What a great future.
Or, more prosaically, passenger rail and freight rail went bankrupt.
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:21 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,016 posts, read 102,663,662 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Agreed. Passenger rail used to not only be functional and useful, but also beautiful and glamorous. Of course, the planners and developers of the 50s and 60s decided to bring about "the future!" and tear apart our mass transit systems, tear down the historic stations, and discard the passenger rail system (and a lot of the freight rail system). Interstate highways were everything you would ever need! They would bring about a new golden age for our nation! Not quite. Now instead we have decaying cities, annihilated neighborhoods, traffic congestion, etc. What a great future.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
When I was a kid, we traveled by train from Beaver Falls (Pittsburgh area) to Milwaukee via Chicago several times to visit family. Family members used to visit us on the same route, in reverse. Beautiful and glamorous it was not. It was a way to get from Point A to Point B. By the 60s, service had gotten terrible. Trains would be not just an hour or so late, but sometimes as much as 8 hours late, on a 10 hour or so trip from Chicago. It was broke, real broke.
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:39 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Was it freight rail related delays back then, too?
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:40 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 24 days ago)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Was it freight rail related delays back then, too?
Probably.
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:58 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Btw, the distance from Pittsburgh to Chicago (460 miles) is roughly the same distance as the two listed below. All much faster than the scheduled ten hours mentioned.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Another comparison, similar distances:

Milan - Naples: 4hr40min
Boston - Washington DC: 6hr40 Acela, 7hr50 Northeast Regional

Note the Italian train is priced similar to the Northeast Regional not the Acela. The Milan-Naples line passes through several large cities, including Florence and Rome. Commuter rail and other slower trains share the route in many parts, like the Northeast Corridor.
Boston - DC train distance is 460 miles, though the shortest route is about 440 miles
Milan to Naples is around 480 miles
Also similar is Paris to Marsielle is 480 miles as well. Scheduled train time is the best of the three, at 3hr20min (a few that don't stop take 3hr8min). A regular poster posted photos of a similar train trip here (press the show button at the end, rest is road trip photos mostly out of a van window).
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Old 08-09-2014, 04:03 PM
 
12,305 posts, read 15,212,168 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
That's what most Amtrak stations more or less resemble today...dirt and a warehouse. Which might help explain why much of the public seems to have a very negative impression of train travel today. They knocked down nearly all the old grand train stations - that made you feel like a king when walked into them, and replaced them with the type of buildings that might be mistaken for a Public self-storage facility.


'One entered the city like a God, one scuttles in now like a rat.'
- one historian's comment in reference to the old and new Penn stations
By the time Amtrak came along, most had only a few intercity trains a day. And often Amtrak cut it even further. Unless there was a thriving commuter trade, not much reason for anyone to go. Cincinnat was down to two trains a day, so Amtrak opened the spartan River Road station.

In the 1970s, only New York, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Washington and San Francisco had any serious commuter train service.
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Old 08-09-2014, 04:11 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Btw, the distance from Pittsburgh to Chicago (460 miles) is roughly the same distance as the two listed below. All much faster than the scheduled ten hours mentioned.




Boston - DC train distance is 460 miles, though the shortest route is about 440 miles
Milan to Naples is around 480 miles
Also similar is Paris to Marsielle is 480 miles as well. Scheduled train time is the best of the three, at 3hr20min (a few that don't stop take 3hr8min). A regular poster posted photos of a similar train trip here (press the show button at the end, rest is road trip photos mostly out of a van window).
It's about 9 hours, now, with far fewer stops than when we did it.
Amtrak - Reservations - Fare Finder
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Old 08-09-2014, 04:17 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
It's about 9 hours, now, with far fewer stops than when we did it.
Amtrak - Reservations - Fare Finder
Assuming it's on time of course. Which only happens 25% of the time. The thershold for "on time" is rather strict, about 30 minutes for the entire route (which includes DC to Pittsburgh)

The Train to Washington, DC, Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Chicago - Capitol Limited | Amtrak

The three others listed are much more reliable. (Northeast Corridor is 75% on time)
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Old 08-09-2014, 04:24 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,016 posts, read 102,663,662 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Assuming it's on time of course. Which only happens 25% of the time. The thershold for "on time" is rather strict, about 30 minutes for the entire route (which includes DC to Pittsburgh)

The Train to Washington, DC, Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Chicago - Capitol Limited | Amtrak

The three others listed are much more reliable. (Northeast Corridor is 75% on time)
Actually, it is about 10 hrs. It leaves Pittsburgh at 11:59, gets to Chicago at 8:45 at which time it is 9:45 in Pittsburgh. My mistake!
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