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Missouri Department of Transportation

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MoDOT News Release 

Amtrak Contact: Marc Magliari 312 880.5390 or MoDOT Contact: Rod Massman 573 751.7476

October 10, 2008 12:00 AM
Missouri Amtrak Ridership Soars
Kansas City-St. Louis passengers up 30 percent

JEFFERSON CITY - Final figures for the Amtrak fiscal year show more people are opting for Amtrak trains twice daily between Kansas City and St. Louis, with ridership rising by more than 30 percent to total 151,690 for the 12 months ending Sept. 30.

Amtrak operates Trains 311, 313, 314 and 316 under a contract with the Missouri Department of Transportation and with the support of the Missouri Rail Passenger Advisory Committee, a grass-roots group representing the communities along the 283-mile corridor.

"While we aren't at the level of service we want to be, we are making great strides toward improving rail passenger service in Missouri," said MoDOT's MultiModal Operations Director Brian Weiler. "This surge in passengers is an indicator that Missourians are seeking out different travel options."

"We take great pride in operating a safe and reliable service that is giving travelers the best way to travel between busy downtowns, an option that avoids highway congestion and links communities," said Amtrak General Superintendent Daryl Pesce, who is based in Chicago.

Earlier this year, the Missouri Legislature and Gov. Matt Blunt approved $5 million to increase track capacity on the route owned by Union Pacific Railroad.  Last month, the Federal Railroad Administration announced the award of a $3.3 million grant to MoDOT to help eliminate two existing 20-mile gaps between passing tracks.  Work is expected to begin next year.

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