The New York Times sort of summed it up on May 10, 2014: Since before World War II, when rail was king and Prohibition was dead, the rolling saloon has been a national staple — its contents relied upon to make the strangers less strange, the commutes less interminable. But over the years, the bar cars began to disappear: Chicago, one of the last holdouts, abandoned its bar service in 2008.
We wrote about bar cars before then even more about bar cars
Connecticut can and cannot afford, it’s well known that this is a service that more than pays for itself. In the 1960s, the bankrupt New Haven had exactly one line of black ink on its ledgers: commuter bar cars! I can’t think of any reason why the economics of this are any different today.
The commuter bar cars were a post-war phenomenon. The New Haven began operating them in the late 1940s or early 1950s. Supposedly Wilfred Duprey, the NH’s dining car department superintendent, got the idea after observing the crowds of drinkers in grill cars employed on special excursion trains. However, in the early 1930s the New Haven operated what was known as a “breakfast bar car” for commuters. This car operated on morning trains running between Stamford and GCT. It may have actually served as the inspiration for the evening commuter bar cars. Regardless, it was the alcoholic beverages served in the commuter bar cars that kept the NH’s dining car service marginally profitable through the end, which is something that no other “modern” railroad was able to do.
Quote from Marc J. Frattasio Feb 18
We’ve been tracking and writing about cloud based systems since the first issue of ec-bp.com. Of course back then in 2003 we referred to is as SaaS or even just ‘online applications.’ Since that time the world has mostly overcome its apprehensions about putting corporate data and processes outside the firewall. Even so, Cloud speculation and operations continue to be big news. To this I say – Whoop-de-doo!
The Indiana Department of Transportation has received four proposals to provide services for the Hoosier State Amtrak route between Chicago and Indianapolis.
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.
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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