FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 9, 2023
Charles Hamilton, AAWA Co-Executive Director, (360) 529-5552 x3
Luis Moscoso, AAWA Government Affairs Director, (360) 529-5552 x2
All Aboard Washington (AAWA), Washington State’s passenger rail advocacy organization, calls on Amtrak and Sound Transit to immediately implement the Amtrak Cascades daily frequencies between Seattle and Portland, OR that have been delayed since 2017. As publicly-supported and funded organizations, Amtrak’s and Sound Transit’s first priority must be to provide safe, reliable and frequent passenger rail service to the region’s taxpayers.
All Aboard Washington is concerned that an ongoing disagreement between Sound Transit and Amtrak is preventing the implementation of Amtrak Cascades passenger rail frequencies in time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas high-volume travel periods. The disagreement centers around scheduling of trains on Sound Transit-owned tracks, and penalties imposed when train on-time performance goals are not met.
This disagreement is impacting Amtrak Cascades service by preventing the establishment of a fifth and sixth daily round-trip between Seattle and Portland. The establishment of these trains was delayed by the tragic 2017 accident in DuPont, WA, and by the pandemic. These delays are preventing increases in ridership and revenue, and precluding better public transportation particularly over the holiday season. All Aboard Washington calls for this disagreement between Sound Transit and Amtrak be resolved immediately and without further delay.
For over forty years, All Aboard Washington (AAWA) has promoted better passenger and freight rail service in the Pacific Northwest. We champion safe, reliable, frequent, competitive, and convenient passenger rail services that meet the needs of all Washingtonians. We are especially active supporters of intercity passenger rail service and intermodal connections to local transit. AAWA’s website is located at https://www.aawa.us/.