Four Private Companies Are Bidding On Operating AMTRAK Routes


The Indiana Department of Transportation has received four proposals to provide services for the Hoosier State Amtrak route between Chicago and Indianapolis.

Bidders include:

Iowa Pacific Holdings Inc., which operates specialty passenger railroads including the Pullman Rail Journeys between Chicago and New Orleans. It also operates the Saratoga & North Creek Railroad in New York’s Adirondack Region.

Corridor Capital LLC of Los Angeles;

Railmark Holdings Inc. of Wixom, Michigan; and

a partnership between Herzog Transit Services Inc. of Irving, Texas, and Passenger Transportation Specialists Inc. of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Amtrak previously submitted its own proposal for 2014-2015, INDOT said.

INDOT hopes to select a finalist by this summer and begin negotiations that could lead to a public-private partnership, agency spokesman Will Wingfield said. The state transportation department asked last month for proposals for services including operating the train route in its entirety or providing services such as Wi-Fi or food and beverage. The agency did not divulge the contents of the proposals.

The Hoosier State operates four days each week. Another Amtrak train operates on the same route three days per week and proceeds on from Indianapolis.

INDOT and seven local governments are paying a $2.7 million subsidy to Amtrak to keep the Hoosier State running through this fall. That subsidy came about after federal support of certain Amtrak routes of less than 750 miles ended.



Birth Of The Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley Railroad


Head on over to Gino’s Rail Museum as soon as possible. I am honored to
host photos of the start of The Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley Railroad in
April of 1971. The CMO of the current operation was just a youngster when
he and his mom rode the equipment being moved between Oneonta and
Cooperstown. The former DO Line tourist railroad was relocating from the
former Ulster and Delaware Railroad between Mickle Bridge and Oneonta.
Chris captured the equipment getting ready to leave the old U&D Station in
Oneonta, the ride along the D&H, the stop at Cooperstown Junction and the
ride through Portlandville, Milford and it’s destination at Cooperstown.
Wait ’till you see the ceremony that was held for the start of the new

Feds issue another crude-by-rail emergency order, advisory to enhance safety


The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) yesterday issued an emergency order requiring all railroads operating trains containing large amounts of Bakken crude oil to notify State Emergency Response Commissions (SERCs) about the operation of those trains through their states.

The order requires that each train carrying more than 1 million gallons of Bakken crude, or about 35 tank cars, in a particular state provide the SERC notification regarding the expected movement of such trains and the affected counties. The notification must include estimated volumes of Bakken crude, frequencies of anticipated train traffic and the planned routes. The order also requires that railroads provide the SERCs contact information for at least one responsible party and help the commissions share the information with appropriate emergency responders in affected communities.

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Mill Steel to establish facility at rail-served Indiana port in Jeffersonville, IN


Mill Steel Co. announced plans to launch operations at the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville on the Ohio River.

Mill Steel purchased a 105,000-square-foot facility at the port and immediately expects to add 120,000 square feet to the building. To be operational in June, the facility will house two state-of-the-art slitting lines in addition to a cut-to-length line, which will expand the company’s service capabilities, Mill Street officials said in a press release.

Served by CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern Railway and the Louisville & Indiana Railroad Co., the port offers direct connections to multiple railroads. The three railroads also interchange with CN, Canadian Pacific, the Indiana Rail Road Co. and Paducah & Louisville Railway Inc.


In addition, the port offers year-round barge shipping with access to the Gulf of Mexico and Great Lakes through the Ohio-Mississippi river system, Ports of Indiana officials said. The port is home to a ‘steel campus’ alliance of 13 businesses that work together to provide a range of metals-related synergies, they said.
“Mill Steel’s advanced manufacturing capabilities are a perfect fit for our multi-modal port environment,” said Ports of Indiana Chief Executive Officer Rich Cooper.

The Ports of Indiana — which also governs ports in Burns Harbor and Mount Vernon — helps businesses boost their logistics skills through direct rail-to-barge capabilities that are strategically located at the nation’s crossroads, said Indiana Secretary of Commerce Victor Smith.

Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville

The Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville is the fastest growing port on the Inland Waterway System. This intermodal transportation gateway is located on the northern bank of the Ohio River in Jeffersonville, Ind., directly across the river from Louisville, Ky. This location is within a one-day drive of more than two-thirds of the U.S. market and is adjacent to the “automotive and appliance alley.”

As you may know, we have written extensively about the “Big 4” Bridge in Jeffersonville and are very interested in the economic progress of the region.





Statue of Liberty replica in Nice, France



Definition of Liberty

The quality or state of being free:

a : the power to do as one pleases

b : freedom from physical restraint

c : freedom from arbitrary or despotic control

d : the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges

e : the power of choice


Synonyms of Liberty

Right, franchise, autonomy, priviledge, authorization, independence, suffrage, free speech


Well, there are all kinds of Liberty:

Let’s focus on a great place to find Liberty: Fairpromise


Fairpromise is the next generation social network based on the people’s social commitment, aiming to become a top 3 social network and a complement for Facebook and Twitter. Fairpromise is an action engine which transforms promises (ideas, dreams, concepts) into actions. Fairpromise reduces the gap between people’s expectancies and reality and offers them a platform for accomplishments and achievements of realistic goals providing innovative project and risk management tools made extremely simple to improve their daily activities (users from 5 to 100 years old targeted differently according to their age, location).

Fairpromise is a free site promoting in a playful way justice, responsibility, fair play and educational values. Fairpromise is a personal, professional, political and social barometer.

Watch a video about Fairpromise

With a potential to reach 1 million users in 60 to 70 cycles and a viral behavior based on a highly emotional message, Fairpromise can become source for many web services and online and offline rich media format applications and games.

Introducing ethics in business, personal and political life Fairpromise encourages real life events and online activities and establishes the first (expected) bridge between reality and the virtual world.

Fairpromise measures the impact of a promise or a challenge (same thing, different approach) on a selected audience, through the universal concept of the promise and challenge. Fairpromise uses the credit for monetization and interaction between users and to keep it funny.

The promise/challenge is presented in a written, audio or video format, making it attractive to an evolving media and suitable for sharing and integration on any platform (Facebook, YouTube, etc.).

Fairpromise offers a unique opportunity to transform credit in money through the CreditradeTM, a tool which allows users to buy credit (coins) from each other using the Fairpromise platform.

Ordinary people come to Fairpromise for fun or for money, for custom education programs for their children or students or to reach achievable goals in their daily tasks.

Public people and VIPs come on Fairpromise to increase their visibility making promises and challenging each other and measure their popularity.

Business people come to create and manage actions (projects, contracts, events, etc) and to negotiate win-win situations, create challenges to increase personal or company’s image, create contests to increase sales or to post projects to increase productivity with the innovative management system that allows anyone to deploy very complex projects in a simple way using the web platform or the mobile phone.

Companies are interested to present new product features, events (offers, deals, sales, etc.). Fairpromise lets users to manage groups. Supplementary features for group’s dynamic allow users to syndicate and to implement different strategies using the group’s power.

Fairpromise is multilingual allowing an international exposure and interaction. Fairpromise economical model is based on several independent, verified templates:


1. User addiction: promise more, earn more credits: FP assesses the credit transaction between users;

2. Ticket system: Online and/or offline help to model contracts, projects or other promises.

3. Fun (Strategy layer for advanced users): Allows users to create strategies, define groups etc.

4. Incentives and Gifts: Diplomas, Mugs, T-shirts or stuffed animals, toys (choice offered for rewards at the end of a promise, targeting 15-25 years) standard/customized models available;

5. Advertising: Advertising solutions on several supports (web, mobile technology) based on PPC, MPC, PPA, and pay per plan, (advertising objects & pay per click).




Royal American Shows: World’s Largest Midway


This aerial photo is quiet interesting. Across from the Ringling Circus is the Royal American show…. once one of the largest carnivals in the US.   Date of this picture Sept 15, 1952.  Joplin, Mo.

The Royal American Shows came to an end in 1997 with Norton Auctioneers conducting an auction at the Winter quarters in 1999.

It ran with a train. See some great pictures. from the 1970’s

With help from Penney Vanderbilt