Amtrak’s need of the $10B would add up pretty fast I think......
- State commuter agencies have to be putting the screws to Amtrak, wanting to pay less for NEC access fees due to less commuter trains running. SHORTFALL of revenue from state commuter agencies.
- State supported trains have not been fully restored (e.g. Vermonter, Adirondack, full train schedule on the Keystone Corridor). SHORTFALL of revenue from State Supported trains.
- NEC revenue is SIGNIFICANTLY down, but fixed costs remain to be paid.
- Even one or two trains operating on the NEC can bring down the catenary that will need to get repaired. A wayward 100+ bridge that won’t close properly dispatches the maintenance and repair crews. .
I think Amtrak needs to cut even more costs on the NEC - reduce even more trains in operation, and even look at closing some ticket offices at stations. Folks, the traffic is NOT there on the NEC. The East Coast has been ravaged by COVID-19, many states are barring travel between states, many workers are now working from home remotely. Would it save costs to turn the catenary OFF except between Newark, NJ and New Rochelle, NY? The new Acela II’s are coming, but to what traffic counts? Depressed traffic counts for sure. It takes a lot of money to maintain high speed infrastructure, but right now, it’s for very few passenger counts. The NEC traffic will rebound, but if Amtrak just cut LD trains to 3x per week, is it enough in balance with operations on the NEC for the near term?