Posts Tagged ‘East Lansing Amtrak station’

Amtrak Stations Seeing Reduced Operations

March 29, 2020

Several Amtrak stations across the system now have reduced hours of operation or are being closed for some or all train arrivals during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Service advisories posted on the Amtrak website said the changes are until further notice.

The Ann Arbor, Michigan, station will see its hours reduced to 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily.

The station normally hosts six Wolverine Service trains a day but for now that has been reduced to two, Nos. 351 and 352, which operated to Chicago in the morning and to Detroit (Pontiac) in the afternoon.

The Metropolitan Lounge at Chicago Union Station is no longer being staffed.

Passengers may still use the lounge but will not receive coffee, hot water or fountain beverages. Amtrak said regular and diet soda will be available by request at the front desk.

However, given that the station is not being staff it is unclear who will be providing those beverages to passengers.

Other stations at which the waiting room is now closed but access to the boarding platforms is being maintained include Kalamazoo, Michigan; and East Lansing, Michigan.

With the New York-Pittsburgh Pennsylvanian and Harrisburg-Philadelphia Keystone Service not operating in Pennsylvania, Amtrak stations in Lancaster, Harrisburg, Altoona and Johnstown are closed.

Latest Amtrak Cuts Include Station Closings

March 21, 2020

Although no Amtrak long distance trains have thus far been spared from service suspensions, they are getting shorter consists.

An online report said the Chicago-Washington Capitol Limited is operating with one P42DC locomotive, one sleeper, one food service car and two coaches.

Some Amtrak station waiting rooms are being temporarily closed.

In a service advisory posted on its website, Amtrak said waiting rooms in Kalamazoo and East Lansing, Michigan, are closed and passengers will not have access to the station restrooms.

The notice said station caretakers will be present to answer questions, provide direction and help operate wheelchair lifts.

Amtrak recommended that rather than waiting outside on the platform that passengers use the Amtrak app or other means to check train status while waiting in their personal vehicles for their train to arrive.

Other stations that are closed include those in Pennsylvania in Harrisburg, Lancaster, Altoona and Johnstown.

All Amtrak service has been suspended at those stations.

Other stations that continue to have service but which are closed include Bloomington-Normal, Illlinois; Burlington, Iowa; Dodge City, Kansas, Lincoln, Nebraska; Lawrence, Kansas; Plano, Illinois; St. Petersburg, Florida (Thruway bus service stop)

In the case of the Normal station, passengers will have access to the Uptown Garage and its complimentary one-hour parking.

Garage elevator access will lead only to the street level. Platform access will be from the exterior of the building only.

Customer Service Representatives will be present on the platform 30 minutes before scheduled departure times to continue checked baggage service, unaccompanied minor service and special services.

The service hours at the Gallup, New Mexico, station has been modified. Passengers will have access to the interior of the station for the 30 minutes before the train arrival time.

Additional service suspensions have also been announced.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation said that starting March 23 Piedmont Service trains 73, 74, 77, and 78 are suspended.

Piedmonts 75 and 76 will continue to operate as will the New York-Charlotte Carolinian.

In California, Pacific Surfliner service will be cut in half on March 23 and further reduced on March 24.

On March 23, Trains 561, 565, 579, and 593 will operate as scheduled but Trains 569, 573, 583, 591, 595, and 759 are cancelled.

Trains 763 and 777 will operate according to the schedule between San Diego and Goleta but there will be no service north of Goleta.

Trains 767 and 785 will operate according to the schedule between San Diego and Los Angeles with no service north of Los Angeles.

Trains 564, 580, and 584 will operate as scheduled but Trains 562, 566, 572, 578, 590, 782, and 792 are cancelled.

Train 796 will operate according to the schedule between Goleta and San Diego but with no service between San Luis Obispo and Goleta.

Effective March 24, scheduled will be further modified and subject to additional change based on ridership and public health conditions.

Trains 759, 561/1761, 565/1565, 569/1569, 573/1573, 583, 591/1591, and 595 are cancelled. Trains 763 and 777 will operate according to the schedule between San Diego and Goleta with no service north of Goleta.

Trains 767/1767 and 785 will operate according to the schedule between San Diego and Los Angeles but with no service north of Los Angeles.

Trains 562, 566/1566, 572/1572, 578, 782, 590/1590, and 792 are cancelled.

Train 774 will operate according to the schedule between Los Angeles and San Diego with no service between San Luis Obispo and Los Angeles.

Train 796 will operate according to the schedule between Goleta and San Diego with no service between San Luis Obispo and Goleta.

Service to San Luis Obispo will be preserved through limited bus connections from Santa Barbara. The Coast Starlight will also continue serving San Luis Obispo.

In northern California, the San Joaquins Joint Powers Authority, Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority and Amtrak have agreed on the following service reductions.

Amtrak San Joaquin service will be suspending the Emeryville and San Francisco Thruway Bus Route (Route 99) on March 21.

Passengers traveling to San Francisco are encouraged to utilize BART via the Richmond Station.

On March 26, Trains 701, 702, 703, 704, 714, and 717 will be suspended and remaining trains will not have lead service attendants or food service.
Train 719 will no longer stop at Richmond because of the BART reduction in hours.

On the east Coast, Amtrak’s Downeaster service will see further service reductions to two roundtrips a day.

On March 21 and 22, Trains 692, 694, 693 and 695 will operate.

Between March 23-27 trains operating will include Nos. 680, 682, 681 and 684.

North of the border, VIA Rail Canada has said the suspension of the Montreal-Halifax Ocean, Toronto-Vancouver Canadian, and Jasper-Prince Rupert service has been extended to May 1.

Effective March 23 Montreal-Senneterre and Montreal-Jonquiere, Quebec, trains will be cut o one round trip per week, as will Sudbury-White River, Ontario, service.

Such an-board and in-station services such as baggage handling and restaurant access will also be curtailed.


East Lansing Ticket Office Closing Monday

October 28, 2018

The Amtrak agent in East Lansing, Michigan, will be removed effective Oct. 29.

Amtrak said passengers boarding or people meeting detraining passengers from the Chicago-Port Huron, Michigan Blue Water will continue to have access to the station’s waiting area and restrooms each day.

The access for westbound Train 365 will begin at 7 a.m. while access for eastbound Train 364 will state at 8 p.m.


Amtrak Ticket Office to Close in East Lansing

October 20, 2018

Amtrak will remove its ticket agent from the East Lansing, Michigan, station on Oct. 29.

A caretaker will continue to open the waiting room at the station.

Passengers will be able to buy tickets from a self-serve kiosk at the station or make reservations at, on the Amtrak mobile app, or by phone at 800-872-7245.

East Lansing is served by the Chicago-Port Huron, Michigan, Blue Water. It also has connecting bus service to Amtrak’s Wolverine Service trains that operate between Chicago and Detroit.

Amtrak to Close East Lansing Ticket Office

September 7, 2018

Amtrak plans to close its ticket office in East Lansing, Michigan, as soon as it can work out arrangements with station owner Capital Area Transportation Authority.

The fourth-busiest Amtrak station in Michigan will join a list that includes Niles, Jackson and Flint where Amtrak has removed ticket agents.Mic

The Amtrak ticket office in East Lansing is currently closed on Tuesday and Wednesday with only a caretaker paid for by the Michigan Department of Transportation overseeing the station.

MDOT Communications Manager Michael Frezell said the agency is working to hire a full-time caretaker for East Lansing.

The caretaker would open the stations before trains arrive. “With a vast majority of tickets being purchased online, having tickets purchased at the station has significantly reduced over the past year,” Frezell said.

Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari declined to comment on the closing of the ticket office in East Lansing, saying that the carrier posts notices of that intent on its website but it has yet to do so in the case of East Lansing.

Magliari also wouldn’t comment on what threshold of patronage that Amtrak uses when deciding to close a ticket office.

This year Amtrak has closed several ticket offices at stations that it said averaged fewer than 40 passenger boardings per day.

Trains magazine quoted an unnamed Amtrak source as saying the minimum threshold of 40,000 boardings per fiscal year is being used to review which ticket offices to keep open and which to close.

More than 68,000 passengers boarded trains at East Lansing in fiscal year 2017, almost was 10,000 more than the number who boarded at Detroit, which is retaining its ticket office.

Amtrak also continues to maintain ticket offices in Michigan in Dearborn, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, all of which had higher patronage than East Lansing in 2017, and at Battle Creek and Port Huron, both of which handled fewer passengers in 2017 than East Lansing.

East Lansing is served by Amtrak’s Chicago-Port Huron Blue Water.

Amtrak Set to Use E. Lansing Intermodal Terminal

January 23, 2016

Amtrak will begin using a new intermodal terminal on Jan. 25 in East Lansing, Michigan.

The Chicago-bound Blue Water will still use the current Amtrak station, but when the train returns that evening it will stop at the $6.3 million Capital Area Multimodal Gateway facility.

Amtrak logoLocal and intercity bus routes have been using the facility since late last year.

Once Amtrak vacates its existing East Lansing station the building will be razed to make way for a parking lot for the intermodal terminal.

The intermodal terminal, built in large part with federal funds, is located at Harrison and Trowbridge roads and is three times larger than the nearby Amtrak station.

“We are so pleased to finally have Amtrak move into our new state-of-the-art facility,” CATA CEO Sandy Draggoo said in a statement. “The Gateway has been ready and waiting for Amtrak’s occupancy, which will complement intercity bus operations, provided by MegaBus, Greyhound and Indian Trails, along with taxi service.”

Amtrak ticket agents will be on duty daily in the intermodal terminal between 7 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

East Lansing is the fifth busiest station among the 28 that Amtrak serves in Michigan and handled more than 66,000 passengers in 2013.

Transfer of Telephone Lines Holding Up Amtrak’s Move into East Lansing’s New Multimodal Hub

January 12, 2016

A new intermodal station in East Lansing, Michigan, is open for business, but Amtrak continues to stop at its previous station site.

The Capital Area Multimodal Gateway, which is operated by the Capital Area Transportation Authority, opened last November and local and intercity buses are using it.

Even though Amtrak about two weeks ago signed a lease to use the facility, CATA said it can’t raze the current Amtrak station until the passenger carrier moves into the new intermodal terminal.

And that is not going to be for a few more weeks, an Amtrak spokesman said because it will take that long to move ts telephones, computers and other data capabilities to the new building.

“We can’t move the ticket agent without moving the telephone,” said Marc Magliari, adding that that work involves several companies.

The new intermodal station, located at Harrison and Trowbridge roads, is three times larger than the current Amtrak station.

The new facility has bus bays with canopies and storage space for luggage and bicycles. There also is an overflow area for taxis and buses and parking for 150 vehicles.

The parking lot, though, has yet to be paved. CATA officials are waiting for the Amtrak station to be razed and then plan to do paving in one project.

The East Lansing intermodal station was funded with a $6.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

It is built on the site of the former Michigan State University Surplus Store and Printing Services buildings. Those were demolished in August 2014.

“We are eager to have the relocation take place in order to better accommodate Amtrak customers — as we have our intercity bus customers — and complete all phases of this project,” said CATA spokeswoman Laurie Robison. “The timing decision rests solely with Amtrak.”

Amtrak’s Chicago-Port Huron, Michigan, Blue Water serves East Lansing, which is the fifth busiest Amtrak station in Michigan serving more than 66,000 passengers annually.

Only Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, Dearborn and Detroit board more Amtrak passengers and all of those stations are served by six daily Wolverine Service trains between Chicago and Detroit (Pontiac)

Also using the Capital Area Multimodal Gateway are MegaBus, Greyhound and Indian Trails bus companies.

Work Begins on New East Lansing Station

August 20, 2014

Work on building a new intermodal station in East Lansing, Mich., that will serve Amtrak recently got underway with the demolition of former Michigan State University Surplus Store and Printing Services buildings.

The $6.8 million facility will also be served by Greyhound, Megabus, Indian Trails bus lines and local Capital Area Transportation Authority buses. The latter will own the station, which is expected to open by next summer.

Funding for the project came from Federal Transportation Administration’s Bus and Bus Facilities Program Livability Initiative ($6.3 million) and the Michigan Department of Transportation ($500,000).

East Lansing is served daily by Amtrak’s Blue Water between Chicago and Port Huron, Mich.

Amtrak Apologizes to East Lansing Passengers

January 18, 2014

Amtrak has apologized to passengers left stranded in East Lansing, Mich., last week when the Blue Water to Chicago failed to show up during severe winter conditions that led to several trains being canceled.

About 20 would-be passengers were affected and will be offered refunds or credits for future travel.

Making matters worse, neither of the Amtrak agents assigned to the East Lansing station showed up for work that day, with both calling in sick.

Amtrak said it has developed alternate plans to open the station if one or more ticket agents cannot open it as usual.

East Lansing, Mich., Getting New Amtrak Station

October 18, 2013

Lansing and East Lansing, Mich., will be getting a new Amtrak station in early 2015.

A new $10.5 million transportation center will be built in East Lansing on a 9-acre site near Harrison and Trowbridge roads.

The current East Lansing Amtrak station, which serves the daily Chicago-Port Huron, Mich., Blue Water, is expected to be demolished by the end of 2013.

The new transportation center will also serve intercity bus routes as well as local buses of the Capital Area Transportation Authority.

The bulk of the funding for the project is a $6.3 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration, a unit of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The project also includes $500,000 matching grants from MDOT and Amtrak.

Planners envision that the new facility will be between 6,000 and 9,000 square feet, with 140 to 150 parking spaces.

The site of the current Amtrak station is owned by Michigan State University, which leases the station to CATA for $1 annually. A 99-year lease was signed in January 2011.

The current station also serves Greyhound and Indian Trails buses. Both companies are expected to serve the new transportation center as is low-fare carrier Megabus.

Michigan Flyer has not decided if it will serve the new transportation center. It’s buses currently stop in downtown East Lansing.

Construction of the new transportation center may begin in the spring. Work remains to be done on the new facility’s design.

MSU donated the property for the new transportation center, which was recently appraised at $2.5 million, an in-kind grant match. All but one of the five buildings at the site will be razed.