For current news, please visit our newsletter page (and sign up for the mailing list). You’ll also find new material at our Train Time podcast. The posts here offer other information, some historical tidbits, and guest opeds.

101, 2020

YE Review And Plans For 2020

By |January 1st, 2020|

Here are some highlights from 2019: Train Time and Train Minutes We started our very own podcast called Train Time! The podcast is one of many efforts to spread the word about expanding regional rail in rural New England. Listen to our premiere episode with Massachusetts Senator Eric Lesser talking about the East-West Rail project. Click here or find us on iTunes or Spotify! In addition to our podcast, we have started releasing radio segments called Train Minutes. These are short snippets of local history. More Train Time episodes (including an interview with Michael Dukakis) and Train Minutes coming soon! Expanded social media presence This year we have revamped our presence on social media, [...]

2911, 2019

Housatonic Line Upgrade Photos

By |November 29th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , |

I had a talk yesterday afternoon with one of the crew working on the Berkshire (Housatonic) Line. There are about 50 people hard at work on the $30-million upgrade to the line within Massachusetts. They have 25 of the yellow machines you see in the photos, and perhaps I'll be able to get a video before they finish. I learned that all the work being done right now is on the ties. Most but not all of them are being replaced. The machines pull out the pins and the old ties, stabilize the gravel ballast (which is 2 feet deep), [...]

311, 2019

Rural Rail: Reforging the Essential Connection between Cities and Rural Regions

By |November 3rd, 2019|Tags: , , , , |

Here's a summary of what I talked about in my presentation at RailNation, which I did from a friend's living room in Washington, DC. My proposal was this: "While there is lots of focus on metropolitan transit needs and major intercity lines, a connection that has been primary throughout human history is largely ignored. That is, the connection between cities and outlying rural areas. In the past, these were essential as sources of food, and human capital. Today, at a time when climate change and economic inequity have become pressing global issues, it is vital that we develop new, mutually [...]

1906, 2019

What’s the difference between the Berkshire (Housatonic) Line & the Berkshire Flyer?

By |June 19th, 2019|Tags: , , |

Last updated 19 June 2019. After reading several letters to the editor about the Berkshire Flyer (the weekend service via Albany initiated by Senator Adam Hinds) as compared to the Housatonic route (the traditional Berkshire Line through northwestern Connecticut), I thought I should explain the two projects’ evolution over the last decade, and the current state of affairs. Click to download PDF of "Berkshire Line? Berkshire Flyer?" published in Berkshire Trade & Commerce. It's clear from conversations I've had with citizens across the region that there is confusion about the two projects, and a prevalent idea that they are in [...]

1703, 2019

Notes from the East-West Rail Study Presentation in Springfield, MA on 12 March 2019

By |March 17th, 2019|Tags: , , |

Train service to Boston doesn’t get the same public attention, at least in Berkshire County, as potential New York passenger services, but the East-West Rail Study is a key issue for the Train Campaign because Boston is the other metropolitan economic powerhouse of the northeast United States, and of course our state capitol. There is an existing service between Pittsfield and Boston, just as there is existing service between Pittsfield and New York via Albany. Neither is conveniently enough timed, or frequent enough, to be much used, or even known. We have often met people who are surprised that these [...]

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