Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

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george matthews
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by george matthews » Fri Jan 10, 2014 11:44 am

Sun Chronicle wrote:
The cost for a round-trip ticket would depend on the accommodations chosen by the passenger. The most expensive would be an individual sleeper, at about $300, and the least expensive would be a coach seat, at $180.

That’s less than it would take to fly from Montreal to Boston, which is about $410 round trip, and comparable to the bus, which is $180 round trip, according to numbers put together by Rebello and Bennett.
Are those dollars US or Canadian? $300 seems rather a lot to me, in either currency.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by MEC407 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:20 pm

Good question about the currency. I'm not sure of the answer (the article doesn't specify), but the current exchange rate is 1 US Dollar equals 1.09 Canadian Dollars, so it's not a terribly huge difference.

The article does say that it would be less expensive than flying to Boston, and about the same as taking the bus. They offer no comparisons for Montreal-Portland or Montreal-Old Orchard Beach (other than the strange mention of flying to Portland in the beginning of the article) because currently there are no public transit service between those places.
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CN9634
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by CN9634 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:42 pm

george matthews wrote:
Are those dollars US or Canadian? $300 seems rather a lot to me, in either currency.

They aren't targeting people who are commuting... it is a luxury/vacation package.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by MEC407 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 2:06 pm

Perhaps one of the Amtrak-knowledgeable members among us could say whether or not the $300 sleeper fare is comparable to what one would pay for an Amtrak sleeper on a route of similar mileage.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Sat Jan 11, 2014 1:03 pm

This paragraph in particular made no sense to me:
In addition, the proposal would need the approval of the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, which runs the Downeaster passenger train, with daily runs to Boston, and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.
NNEPRA doesn't 'control' passenger rail in Maine. The only reason I could see for doing this would be if the partners intend to try to have NNEPRA contract for this service through Amtrak which would then bring Amtrak's universal access rights into play. Unfortunately at that point the for-profit aspect of this venture becomes very complicated. I thought the fares sounded remarkably low and I would be concerned about whether or not they're high enough.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:50 pm

While checking on some other items I found this reference in the Official Guide of July 1896 to a named train on the Grand Trunk in Maine that ran seasonally all the way through from Chicago. Full name was, "The Seaside and White Mountain Special Vestibule Limited". It operated with an all Pullman configuration and must have been quite the sight.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:41 pm

Interior photograph of the "Seaside and White Mountains Special" in seasonal service once weekly from Chicago to Portland and return via Montreal, 1897.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:47 pm

Train consist for "Seaside and White Mountain Special", 1889. Four cars, all Pullman, all the way.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:52 pm

Six cars in 1889 as reported in news briefs of the Pontiac Gazette.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:57 pm

Dearborn Station in Chicago reported as station of origin for "Seaside and White Mountain Special" in 1890 by the Sarnia Observer.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by jbvb » Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:47 pm

'Relaxed' is a generous description of that eastbound schedule - detour to Niagara Falls, then arrive Montreal at noon Friday for a 13 hour layover.

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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by gokeefe » Sun Jul 14, 2019 8:46 pm

I remain astonished that it ever even happened at all. This was an amazing operational feat for it's time.
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John Smythe
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by John Smythe » Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:33 pm

The States of Maine & NH can't get their acts together to even rehab either the MEC Mtn. Division or The Conway Line to even Ossipee Pit. All these 2 states seem to like to do is raise toll revenues & undertake more widening projects of existing highways in a never ending " Big Dig " process.

Just wait till there's some massive disaster that effects the availability of motor fuel or raises the price to over $10 - $12 a gallon. The public will be screaming for answers as to why there were train tracks that could have been rehabbed That use very much less fuel to travel hundreds of miles.
Love me or hate me.....I've kept the " Flame of Hope " lit & burning for MEC #501 since 1995. J. Smythe... Former Master Mechanic MEC #501 Project 1995-2000.

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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by MEC407 » Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:53 pm

John Smythe wrote:
Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:33 pm
All these 2 states seem to like to do is raise toll revenues & undertake more widening projects of existing highways in a never ending " Big Dig " process.
It's been almost 20 years since the last major highway widening in Maine. I have no idea what goes on in NH, but Maine is definitely not aggressive about widening highways or building new highways.

Furthermore, Maine's toll increases have been minimal, infrequent, and have only been implemented in order to keep up with the costs of maintenance and labor.
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Re: Montreal - Portland passenger service, past and future

Post by John Smythe » Mon Jul 15, 2019 6:28 pm

My family owned a vacation home on Sebago lake since the 1960's, we sold it about 2000-2001. Up until the late 1990's it cost $1.00 from York to exit #8. For endless years fro the 70's - the time we sold the property the Toll Road was always undergoing construction, sometimes down to one lane, other times switching over to the other side of the highway, sometimes just dirt & dust for long stretches, all the windows rolled up on a hot Summers day.

Now the toll cost between the same 2 locations is $4.00, the exit numbers are the craziest thing I've ever seen. Yes the toll road looks great but what happens after you exit onto one of the local highways / routes after leaving the toll plazas? All those cars & trucks which always pay more, must be great to be a toll road employee, pay wise that is.

Of course we have our Mystic River Bridge, for all the times it's been torn up, re decked, painted, etc they could have built a tunnel under the river and tore down the bridge. The problem was even though the toll collectors were paid $99,000 a year, they still caught them stealing money, made the papers on a regular basis. Well enough of that.
Love me or hate me.....I've kept the " Flame of Hope " lit & burning for MEC #501 since 1995. J. Smythe... Former Master Mechanic MEC #501 Project 1995-2000.

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