September 16, 2021 - TRA Newswire -
If and when President Biden's American Jobs Plan makes it to his desk for his signature it will include billions in funding to expand intercity passenger rail services.
If and when that happens, Amtrak President and CEO William Flynn said that the railroad will prioritize expansion of train service across the Lone Star state. A record $66 billion in rail funding would go to Amtrak to clear its maintenance backlog and allow for expansion of service.
In a September 14 interview with International Railway Journal Flynn said he wants to see more service to San Antonio, Austin, Dallas and Houston.
This follows a vision the company released in March tagged Amtrak Connects US which outlines high growth corridors in the country that Amtrak wants to serve.
Flynn wants to increase service on the daily Texas Eagle that connects San Antonio to DFW and East Texas onward to Chicago, according to the report. The CEO is optimistic that the funds will be approved. “Our service today looks very much like it did in 1971,” he tells IRJ. “There’s a large under-served population, and that is really the underlying logic of Amtrak Connects U.S. That’s an exciting opportunity if we can get this level of funding to invest in infrastructure, rolling stock and stations, and service expansion.”
Flynn was quoted as saying “It’s more money than has ever been directed Amtrak’s way in our 50-year history. We’re not celebrating yet; there’s a ways to go. But I think a month ago, we would have been more cautious.”
The Amtrak Texas expansion plan can be found here: http://texasrailadvocates.org/amtrak-connects-us/