Take a ride on a faster Texas Eagle say Texas representatives - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Take a ride on a faster Texas Eagle say Texas representatives

By Lakecia Shockley - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - It is a train that travels from Longview all the way to Chicago, The Texas Eagle".

"If you add up the Amtrak ridership at Texarkana, Marshall, Longview, and Mineola those totals exceed the rail passenger usage as Dallas," said Griff Hubbard, a Amtrak revenue manager. "When the economy is bad. Rail passenger services has always seen an upswing."

For passengers like, Cindy Schell and her daughters there are a lot of benefits from riding mtrak.

"I liked that it was on time actually, and that it was inexpensive, and it sounded like a fun thing to do for the girls for Spring Break," said Cindy Schell of Plano.

"I like sitting here looking at the window and playing cards with my friends," said Cindy's daughter, Victoria.

"It's not expensive and it's more comfortable than a bus,"said David Murphy,a Michigan passenger. "[On] the bus you have six or seven change over from start to finish as with the train you only have one change over."

Last year, The Texas Eagle ranked second as the highest revenue producer of Amtrak's longest distance routes. To improve passenger rail, The East Texas Corridor Council is pushing for a higher average speed of 80 miles per hour - double what it is now. Their main goal is to prevent railroad traffic growth from spilling on to U.S. texas highways.

"What's old becomes new again," said Hubbard. "The railroads built this country. This is a mobility and economic [decision] for future generations of East Texas."

"It provides another form of transportation at a time when fuel prices are volatile," said Tim Vaughn, Chairman of East Texas Corridor council. "Nice way to get out and see the country and enjoy your journey not just getting to your destination."

The Corridor Council says they've already received three quarters of a million dollars in federal funding, and they hope to get some stimulus money to help with improvements.

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