Passenger rail conversation picks up speed in Edina, Minnesota; Long Beach, California mayor on mission to raise ridership, reduce crime on long-neglected Blue Line; VIA Rail Canada sets new record

August 11, 2017

Passenger rail conversation picks up speed in Edina, Minnesota

By Ethan Groothuis, The Sun Current; August 11, 2017

The possibility of passenger rail chugged forward through the kickoff of public engagement process at a July 25 meeting. The purpose of the meeting was simple: to seek comments on the general idea of passenger rail in Edina.

“We really want to make sure the public knew what the study was about,” Edina Transportation Planner Mark Nolan said.

Click here to read the full story.

Long Beach mayor on mission to raise ridership, reduce crime on long-neglected Blue Line

By Meghan McCarty Carino, 89.3 KPCC; August 11, 2017

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s newest train, the Expo Line to Santa Monica, gets a lot of love. Its ridership has exploded since it opened last year, as officials wax poetic about the beach-bound train.

But it’s been a different story for Metro’s oldest rail, the 27-year-old Blue Line connecting Long Beach and downtown Los Angeles.

The 22-mile line has been losing riders in recent years and Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia wants to figure out why. The charismatic young mayor joined the Metro board earlier this year with a mission to bring renewed attention to his city’s signature line.

Click here to read the full story.

VIA Rail sets new record over August long weekend

A press release from VIA Rail Canada; August 11, 2017:

From Thursday, August 3, to Tuesday, August 8, 2017:

VIA Rail Cross-Canada Services

  • 84,400 passengers | 9.5% increase compared to 2016
  • More than 33 million kilometers travelled | 7.7% increase compared to 2016
  • 13% increase in passenger revenue compared to 2016
  • Busiest day: Friday, August 4th
  • Most popular destinations: Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa

Quebec City – Windsor Corridor

  • 77,000 passengers | 11% increase compared to 2016
  • 14% increase in passenger revenue compared to 2016

TorontoVancouver (the Canadian)

  • 3,500 passengers | 5% increase compared to 2016
  • 15% increase in passenger revenue compared to 2016

MONTREAL, Aug. 11, 2017 /CNW/ – Revenue derived from the sale of tickets by VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) over the August long weekend hit their highest level. With ticket sales up by 13% compared to the same period in 2016, this was the most successful long weekend. In total, 84,400 travellers decided to board one of the 372 VIA Rail trains that were criss-crossing the country from August 3 to (and including) August 8 – an increase of 9.5% over 2016. Passengers covered more than 33 million kilometers. Friday, August 4th was the busiest day of the weekend, with 17,000 people travelling. The Québec City-Windsor Corridor saw 77,000 people on the move – primarily between Toronto, Montréal and Ottawa; these three cities were the destinations for 24,000, 15,000 and 11,000 travellers during this period.

“The outstanding results from last weekend are further evidence of the popularity of VIA Rail’s trains with Canadians. Whenever our trains are operating at almost full capacity, as was the case these past few days, our front-line staff offer services that meet the highest quality standards, and our equipment is strictly maintained to ensure that these thousands of passengers reach their destinations safely and comfortably. No detail is too small when it comes to providing the best possible experience,” said VIA Rail President and CEO, Yves Desjardins-Siciliano.

About VIA Rail Canada
As Canada’s national rail passenger service, VIA Rail ( and its 2,700 employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional and transcontinental trains linking over 400 communities across Canada, and about 180 more communities through intermodal partnerships, and safely transports nearly four million passengers annually. The Corporation was awarded seven Safety Awards by the Railway Association of Canada over the last eight years. For more information, visit:

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SOURCE VIA Rail Canada Inc.



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