by F-line to Dudley via Park
Cowford wrote:The option for 0 passenger carriers to Rockland instead of 1. Because nobody in their right mind thinks inviting Joe Boardman to take his business train to Rockland for a show-and-tell on what a thriving passenger environment it is...then the incumbent passenger carrier closing up shop within months because a contract extension was financially non-viable...is going to make Amtrak jump to any conclusion other than "What in the hell is going on up there?" And if anyone did think they were playing a cunning game of eight-dimensional chess pitting bigger players against each other, then the hit to 2015 Downeaster ridership from all the SGR-related cancellations surely flipped that game board and scattered the pieces over the floor to bring priorities into stark focus.This RFP and its outcome gives them options they otherwise wouldn't have if they had written the RFP for "more of the same".What are these options you are referring to? There's no evidence that the former agreement would have hamstrung NNEPRA on Rockland service ambitions. Furthermore, ME's former excursion service was not exactly a stellar-performing money machine. I'm sure ME would have been perfectly happy hosting NNEPRA service for a fee.
On the freight side, consider that changing different locomotive paint schemes doesn't generate additional business.
It's about Dragon, and no more. My guess is MEDOT got pressured from above--in a year where the statewide economy was taking body blows--to stop trying to out-strategize itself. It comes off like an executive decision to tighten up and focus: find the carrier singularly best-equipped for serving Dragon self-contained with the least assistance, and don't waste time pussyfooting with extraneous future "options" because there won't be any if Rockland's day-to-day freight ops start taking on water. Justify the future RFP's that open up the future "options" by making sure this one hews closely to a bottom-line of stability above all else. The very pursuit of "options" becomes destabilizing when it gets way too many moves ahead of itself.