Amtrak Mesa to Phoenix 1980s

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railiner

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IIRC, Amtrak also ran a similar operation for PennDOT, from Pittsburgh to some point east on CR, during some major highway reconstruction back around that time. It had not seen commuter service for decades prior to that...
 

Chey

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Heh! I lived there at the time. I had moved there in the early 70s and the valley was pretty much in a total drought all that time until the 1980 rains. I remember my brother getting stuck at ASU for a couple of days, unable to get back to Phoenix to eat and sleep and get back to school the next day in time for class. I remember the Hattie B, I had thought to ride it to Tempe and back till I saw the crowds.

In the early 90s I rode the Sunset Ltd from NOL to Tempe, to that little depot that actually even had checked baggage and a station agent. I wish the route had stayed the same but that had more to do with Southern Pacific than Amtrak.
 

anumberone

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It's astounding how much water was released over that dam. The desert can be a scary place when it rains hard and that water comes off those hills, gets up on top that sand and starts running down those what were dry washes.
 

Anderson

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Amtrak also did something similar when that bridge got hit by a truck in Washington State...but they flubbed the extra service (they arranged a questionable reverse-peak frequency due to slot issues on the line).
 

dogbert617

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IIRC, Amtrak also ran a similar operation for PennDOT, from Pittsburgh to some point east on CR, during some major highway reconstruction back around that time. It had not seen commuter service for decades prior to that...
Stupid question, but by the CR acronym, what did you mean by that? Also this is really interesting about Amtrak operating temporary Phoenix to Mesa train service years ago, due to flooding and worries that bridges would fail! On a different note, I remember once upon a time in the 1980s thanks to doing research on my own, that Valparaiso, IN used to have direct Amtrak train service into town back when the Broadway Limited ran. And IIRC, I believe that was later renamed to the Three Rivers? Let me know if my memory is wrong, there. I do wish Valparaiso would get some sort of train service again, even if it was just commuter rail. At least they do have V-Line bus service, that runs between Dune Park South Shore station and Valparaiso.
 

railiner

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IIRC, Amtrak also ran a similar operation for PennDOT, from Pittsburgh to some point east on CR, during some major highway reconstruction back around that time. It had not seen commuter service for decades prior to that...
I dug this article up on the web...apparently, the 'Parkway Limited', was not an Amtrak, but rather a Conrail operation. Amtrak did use equipment from the Pennsylvanian, to do a short run (The Fort Pitt) back to Altoona around that same era...

https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=0GQdAAAAIBAJ&sjid=01wEAAAAIBAJ&pg=6882,3296262&dq=parkway-limited&hl=en

https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=PegNAAAAIBAJ&sjid=qW0DAAAAIBAJ&pg=5476,19290&dq=parkway-limited&hl=en
 
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Barb Stout

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Heh! I lived there at the time. I had moved there in the early 70s and the valley was pretty much in a total drought all that time until the 1980 rains. I remember my brother getting stuck at ASU for a couple of days, unable to get back to Phoenix to eat and sleep and get back to school the next day in time for class. I remember the Hattie B, I had thought to ride it to Tempe and back till I saw the crowds.

In the early 90s I rode the Sunset Ltd from NOL to Tempe, to that little depot that actually even had checked baggage and a station agent. I wish the route had stayed the same but that had more to do with Southern Pacific than Amtrak.
Where was the little train station in Tempe? I lived in Tempe in the '80s and '90s and don't remember where it was.
 

Seaboard92

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Valparaiso has an Amtrak commuter service into Chicago up until the 90s I believe. It was a descendent of a Pennsylvania Railroad commuter run.
 

MikefromCrete

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Right, the Valpo commuter runs (two a day in each direction) dated back to the PRR days. They died after Indiana refused to fund the runs. Amtrak argued it was not required to run commuter trains without a local subsidy. Indiana acted the way it always does when faced with a progressive issue.
 

Chey

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Where was the little train station in Tempe? I lived in Tempe in the '80s and '90s and don't remember where it was.
Apologies for the delay. It was at Ash & 3rd. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempe_station_(Arizona)

It's a restaurant now (remember Macayo's? They closed their Phoenix restaurant and opened a bunch of smaller ones. This one is called Macayo's Depot Cantina. Never been there... yet.) Soooo - did you go to ASU?
 

dogbert617

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You got a Superliner II. I think they're slightly nicer than the older Superliner Is. :)
Right, the Valpo commuter runs (two a day in each direction) dated back to the PRR days. They died after Indiana refused to fund the runs. Amtrak argued it was not required to run commuter trains without a local subsidy. Indiana acted the way it always does when faced with a progressive issue.
That's a shame those 2 runs in each direction(and 4 trains overall) got lost, once Indiana stopped funding that train. Can't say I'm surprised it sadly was eliminated, when funding wasn't renewed for it. South Shore Line has been lucky to survive, on the other hand. Probably due to very longstanding and strong support from South Bend and NWI state lawmakers, I'm sure! Too bad it wasn't enough to save that train commuter service to Valparaiso, though. And why without a doubt, there is new bus service(V-Line) to/from the Dune Park South Shore station today.
 

Barb Stout

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Apologies for the delay. It was at Ash & 3rd. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempe_station_(Arizona)

It's a restaurant now (remember Macayo's? They closed their Phoenix restaurant and opened a bunch of smaller ones. This one is called Macayo's Depot Cantina. Never been there... yet.) Soooo - did you go to ASU?
I remember the name Macayo. I lived there from 1984-1997 and worked at Desert Samaritan Hospital (now Banner), so didn't have to cross the "river" to get to work. I did take a few classes at ASU, so am familiar with the campus as it was in the mid '90s. I moved before they did all the fancy stuff with the river and ASU. You?
 

SubwayNut

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That's a shame those 2 runs in each direction(and 4 trains overall) got lost, once Indiana stopped funding that train. Can't say I'm surprised it sadly was eliminated, when funding wasn't renewed for it. South Shore Line has been lucky to survive, on the other hand. Probably due to very longstanding and strong support from South Bend and NWI state lawmakers, I'm sure! Too bad it wasn't enough to save that train commuter service to Valparaiso, though. And why without a doubt, there is new bus service(V-Line) to/from the Dune Park South Shore station today.
The City of Valpo also administers the Chicago DASH bus service (its operated by Royal Excursion a major regional charter bus operator) that makes 5 daily round-trip to and from the loop. That to me feel like the direct predecessor of the former Valpo Commuter trains that Amtrak incredibly ran until the early 90s.

https://ci.valparaiso.in.us/489/ChicaGo-DASH
 

railiner

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Stupid question, but by the CR acronym, what did you mean by that?
In case my subsequent post didn't explain it...CR = Conrail. I said that to distinguish the new service from the then existing PAT (former B&O) Mon Valley commuter line...
 

Palmland

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Early in my working days I was filling in for a manager on vacation and was working at a small office near the small B&O Grant st. station downtown Pittsburgh. Each morning a couple B&O RDC’s would bring the morning train into town (not the P&LE one other trains used). Someone in the office used it for commuting to. Of course I never took a photo!
 

railiner

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Early in my working days I was filling in for a manager on vacation and was working at a small office near the small B&O Grant st. station downtown Pittsburgh. Each morning a couple B&O RDC’s would bring the morning train into town (not the P&LE one other trains used). Someone in the office used it for commuting to. Of course I never took a photo!
Pittsburgh was always a fascinating town, for me. The B&O Grant Street station was a fairly modern (1957) one. Besides the PATrains to Versailles that used that terminal, there was a lone P&LE commuter to Beaver Falls, that survived until the '80's. It used the P&LE station.
 

Chey

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I remember the name Macayo. I lived there from 1984-1997 and worked at Desert Samaritan Hospital (now Banner), so didn't have to cross the "river" to get to work. I did take a few classes at ASU, so am familiar with the campus as it was in the mid '90s. I moved before they did all the fancy stuff with the river and ASU. You?
Yeah, ASU alumnus. I lived in the valley longer than I've lived anyplace (military brat), most of it in Tempe and Mesa. My first Amtrak trip was from Union Station in Phoenix. Very pretty station. I don't know if Amtrak will ever serve it again. When I left Arizona I think Sprint owned the building but since it's on the Nat'l Register of Historical Places I don't think they can do much to change it (I hope not anyway).
 

jiml

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When I left Arizona I think Sprint owned the building but since it's on the Nat'l Register of Historical Places I don't think they can do much to change it (I hope not anyway).
Sprint is partially an offshoot of Southern Pacific, so they still technically owned the building. That said, I recall reading they were thinking of selling it last year.
 

toddinde

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Hi everyone. If you are interested in bringing rail passenger service back to Tempe and Phoenix, getting the Sunset Limited daily and routing it back through Phoenix, please join All Aboard Arizona. You can find our website on the internet. We do twice annual rail summits, but we have been meeting with elected officials and working on a detailed plan to accomplish this. The tracks are there. It’s possible to get the money as a restoration of service. We can make this happen, and I believe we will. All Aboard Arizona!
 

Bob Dylan

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Hi everyone. If you are interested in bringing rail passenger service back to Tempe and Phoenix, getting the Sunset Limited daily and routing it back through Phoenix, please join All Aboard Arizona. You can find our website on the internet. We do twice annual rail summits, but we have been meeting with elected officials and working on a detailed plan to accomplish this. The tracks are there. It’s possible to get the money as a restoration of service. We can make this happen, and I believe we will. All Aboard Arizona!
Better elect some better Senators! Even the Late,Great John McCain didnt know Amtrak served Arizona till he was told differently!
 

toddinde

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Better elect some better Senators! Even the Late,Great John McCain didnt know Amtrak served Arizona till he was told differently!
McCain was a good man, but not good for Amtrak. But Cindy McCain was known to ride the Sunset Limited. Arizona is changing. Kyrsten Sinema is supportive. Tucson to Phoenix is a natural corridor.
 
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