New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

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DaveKCMO
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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

KCPowercat wrote:So this would.connect KC to Dallas via OKC?
initially it would just extend the heartland flyer train from OKC to newton, where passengers would connect with the southwest chief. there's a coach bus that makes that connection now that started operating a few years back.

post-brownback, KDOT would need to provide operating assistance to the heartland flyer to match route mileage (a similar arrangement existing now between ODOT and TxDOT for the existing flyer). amtrak is not allowed to operate any train that runs less than 750 miles, and this would be about 600 (thus, operations would need to be paid 100% by states or private entities).

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

http://www.gctelegram.com/news/20180126 ... enger-rail

If you live in Kansas, contact your state legislators and let them know you support this.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by tower »

I'm sure this will be an unpopular opinion, but I don't think this should happen. I would rather they upgrade the current routes, either in speed or in service. This is actually my philosophy with Amtrak in general. There is no point building sub 70 mph, 5hr rail between midsize, car dominated cities. I drove to OKC this year for work, and if I had the option of taking the train... I still would've driven.

If this is a state subsidized route it changes my opinion a bit, but not much. I'm sure Kansas can find more worthy rail projects. Running a commuter train between Lawrence and Union Station comes to mind.
Last edited by tower on Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by normalthings »

A route to Newtown alone really makes little sense. Connections to KC will be basically impossible. They either need a Fast Route to KC or not route at all. A Line from KC through Kansas(Lawrence, Topeka, etc) to Denver makes the most sense of all IMHO.

Additionally, if they wanted a phased build-out why not do something that starts in KC. That way the highest ridership sections are built first. Connecting KC to Kansas makes a whole lot more sense than connecting Dallas/OKC with Newton.
Example Build Out
Phase One: KC to Lawrence
Phase Two: Extend to Topeka
Phase Three: Extend to Emporia or Netwon
Phase Four: Extend to OKC.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by flyingember »

The most useful Amtrak upgrades for KC would be

Improvements all the way to La Junta, CO and build new track to Denver and OKC.
from KC to Omaha and onto Minneapolis
St. Louis to Carbondale

What this does it is cuts a lot of long distance go around for a lot of cities. There's other good improvements, but these piggyback KC onto other cities. Like the OKC and Minneapolis branch benefits Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Denver, OKC, KC, St. Louis, Omaha and Minneapolis with more direct routes between these cities

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

The lobbying push is coming from Wichita.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by normalthings »

Is there any talk about a KC to Topeka route or such?

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

ldai_phs wrote:Is there any talk about a KC to Topeka route or such?
If the Newton connection is successful, it would lay the groundwork for the daytime train between Fort Worth and Kansas City, with stops in Topeka and Lawrence (like the current Southwest Chief).

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by tower »

The problem with the longer routes is that they are more susceptible to delays (due to freight). A shorter route may be less so. Only time I've ridden the southwestern chief it was delayed three hours. If getting the route from Newton to OKC allowed them to add another line on the SC rails from Newton to KC, fine, but I'd rather just have the Newton or Topeka to KC route. I would rather them not add long distance routes until more of the current routes are 100+ mph. Faster, shorter routes give them more money for new routes.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

tower wrote:The problem with the longer routes is that they are more susceptible to delays (due to freight). A shorter route may be less so. Only time I've ridden the southwestern chief it was delayed three hours. If getting the route from Newton to OKC allowed them to add another line on the SC rails from Newton to KC, fine, but I'd rather just have the Newton or Topeka to KC route. I would rather them not add long distance routes until more of the current routes are 100+ mph. Faster, shorter routes give them more money for new routes.
Amtrak cannot operate routes less than 750 miles by law unless 100% subsidized by states.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

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Then I propose a new route from St.Louis to Denver. Call it the Prarie Schooner.
Quocunque Jeceris Stabit

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by herrfrank »

I wonder if a new route from KC to Wichita would also facilitate a dream among some Amtrak long distance managers to re-route the Southwest Chief on the higher-speed and double-tracked BNSF mainline (the line by I-35 that bypasses Olathe and heads south to Wichita and Amarillo, eventually turning west to New Mexico).

It might shave several hours off of the Chicago - LA travel time.


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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

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Amtrak requests funding to extend passenger rail line from Oklahoma City to Kansas

https://okcfox.com/news/local/amtrak-re ... -to-kansas

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

The new 10-year Kansas transportation bill approved earlier this month includes $5 million annually for rail projects (in addition to $5 million annually to match short line railroad projects). Tentatively good news for Amtrak expansion in Kansas when the economy improves.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by normalthings »

BNSF is adding a third mainline track across Kansas on their Transcon route

https://www.supplychaindive.com/news/bn ... 130a0bfcf5

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by DaveKCMO »

normalthings wrote:
Wed Jan 27, 2021 2:10 pm
BNSF is adding a third mainline track across Kansas on their Transcon route

https://www.supplychaindive.com/news/bn ... 130a0bfcf5
This is probably not the same track that would host a train to OKC and FTW, which would go to Lawrence, Topeka, and Newton before heading due south through Ark City to Gainesville and beyond.

https://www.bnsf.com/bnsf-resources/pdf ... rk-map.pdf
http://www.ksdot.org/pdf_files/final-amtrak-study.pdf

I mean, there might be a *little* bit overlap, but not much.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by flyingember »

It's not

The relevant Southern Transcon segments in MO + KS on this map are-
Panhandle, Emporia, Marceline

http://www.bnsf.com/ship-with-bnsf/maps ... ns-map.pdf

Expansion in MO would help the SW Chief.

The Emporia segment is the track that goes by Lake Quivira. That's where Amtrak leaves this subdivision west of KC.
SW Chief follows the Emporia and Marceline subdivisions to the east of Lake Quivira

SW Chief picks up the Transacon line again at Albuquerque

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by normalthings »

DaveKCMO wrote:
Wed Jan 27, 2021 10:00 pm
normalthings wrote:
Wed Jan 27, 2021 2:10 pm
BNSF is adding a third mainline track across Kansas on their Transcon route

https://www.supplychaindive.com/news/bn ... 130a0bfcf5
This is probably not the same track that would host a train to OKC and FTW, which would go to Lawrence, Topeka, and Newton before heading due south through Ark City to Gainesville and beyond.

https://www.bnsf.com/bnsf-resources/pdf ... rk-map.pdf
http://www.ksdot.org/pdf_files/final-amtrak-study.pdf

I mean, there might be a *little* bit overlap, but not much.
I am starting to dig myself into a rabbit hole. It appears that the Kansas Transcon route was just in the process of being upgraded from single track to double (see this article from last year). https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.busine ... 20-6%3famp

The tripling of capacity on the preferred route could free up the SW Chief line id think.

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Re: New AMTRAK route between Kansas City and Oklahoma City

Post by Major KC Fan »

The BNSF line heads south WEST of Lake Quivira, following Mill Creek down past Shawnee, Lenexa, Olathe, etc. I grew up in the Morris area and now live in Shawnee so know it well. There used to be a little town called Holliday, just about where the split occurs. Shawnee basically allowed for it to be wiped off the face of the earth when they allowed the expansion of the Deffenbaugh landfill. Holliday was named for the Santa Fe magnate who ran the railroad.

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