Posts Tagged ‘Oxford Ohio’

Ohio Intermodal Station Projects Seek Other Funding After Failing to Land a TIGER Grant

August 11, 2016

Intermodal station projects in Cleveland and Oxford, Ohio, failed to win a federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery grant this year, but will continue to move forward while seeking other funding sources.

In Cleveland, transportation officials have been studying the creation of the Lakefront Multimodal Transportation Center that will serve Amtrak, intercity buses and Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority buses and trains.

Amtrak 4The center, to be located west of East Ninth Street, unsuccessfully sought a $37.4 million TIGER grant.

The total project cost is $46.7 million of which Amtrak is expected to pay $4 million.

The intermodal complex would be part of a planned Mall-to-Harbor walkway that is being built by the City of Cleveland. That project will get underway this fall.

The walkway will have stairs and an elevator linking it to the Amtrak station.

Improvements to the Amtrak station include bringing it into ADA compliance, platform resurfacing/widening, and parking lot and walkway improvements.

Planners are eyeing how to obtain funding for preliminary engineering and construction of the Greyhound portion of the transportation center.

In Oxford, the city, Miami University and the Butler County Regional Transit Authority have proposed developing an intermodal facility that would serve as a stop for Amtrak’s Chicago-New York Cardinal.

Officials unsuccessfully sought $20 million in TIGER funds for the $26 million bus-rail intermodal station.

The Amtrak station platform, shelter and parking will cost about $600,000. The Cardinal currently does not stop in Oxford, but Amtrak has indicated it would be willing to serve Oxford if it provides suitable station facilities.

Petition Drive Seeks Oxford Amtrak Stop

June 28, 2015

An Oxford resident has collected more than 1,000 signatures in support of establishing an Amtrak station in that southwest Ohio community.

Many of those who signed Deb Clark’s petitions also said they would be willing to provide funds or materials to make the station happen, she said.

The city of Oxford is supporting the bid to create a station to serve Amtrak’s tri-weekly Chicago-New York Cardinal, but G. Alan Kyger, Oxford’s development director, said a search committee has not decided on a site.

He did say that the committee is looking at locations on public land, although a privately-owned site would not be ruled out.

The committee has examined five or six potential sites, including between High Street and the former Talawanda High School site on Locust Street.

City officials have declined to divulge the specific locations because they have not spoken with the property owners.

“The eventual decision-makers are going to be city council and Miami University,” Kyger said. “We’re trying to work together on this project.”

Kyger said the search committee intends to make a location recommendation by the end of the summer.

Amtrak gave Oxford and Miami the go-ahead to select a site earlier this year.

The railroad has expressed a willing to serve Oxford, but the city and the university would have to find the site and to pay for it.

The station is expected to be a shelter station with overhead canopies but no amenities such as restrooms.

Oxford Continues Push to Become Amtrak Stop

June 2, 2015

Potential ridership in Oxford, Ohio, is strong enough to merit establishing a station there to serve Amtrak’s Cardinal, city officials say.

The city of Oxford and Miami University will continue to lobby Amtrak to stop the Chicago-New York train in this city located 25 miles northwest of Cincinnati, the nearest station.

Miami University, which has more than 1,400 students from Illinois alone, has been working with the city to pursue the stop for Amtrak’s tri-weekly Cardinal.

Alan Kyger, the city’s economic development director, said the costs for the station would be covered by the city, so it is expected to be little more than a station with overhead canopies.

City officials have not yet projected how much the shelter will cost. “The eventual decision-makers are going to be city council and Miami University,” Kyger said.

Amtrak has asked for information showing the proposed station site, including property ownership information, whether there will be other uses of the facility and what funding has been obtained.

A committee is expected to have recommendations on the station by the end of summer.

Oxford Continues Push to Be an Amtrak Stop

February 19, 2015

Oxford, Ohio, officials continue to push for their city of 21,000 to become a station for Amtrak’s tri-weekly Chicago-New York Cardinal.

City Manager Douglas Elliott told the Oxford City Council this month that he met with Miami University officials, the Butler County Regional Transit Authority, and the Talawanda schools to discuss applying for a TIGER grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation that would be used to build station facilities.

The university favors creating an Amtrak stop in Oxford.

“As a university that attracts students from Ohio as well as throughout the U.S. and around the world, we support an initiative that would provide expanded travel options for Miami students. Miami has a strong presence in the Midwest – the 10 top non-Ohio high schools with the largest number of applicants for fall 2014 were from the Chicago area – so having this option available for prospective and current students would be a helpful asset to the University,” said Susan Schaurer, interim director of admission and enrollment communication.

Elliott also noted that a new round of TIGER funding is slated for early spring.

“We think the time is good for us to request once again to request they consider a feasibility study for a stop here in Oxford,” he said. “We’ll be submitting a letter to Amtrak regarding that.” Amtrak rejected an earlier request from Oxford to conduct a feasibility study.

Elliott said that request was made around the time the recession hit. Ridership aboard the Cardinal has since improved.

Oxford Making Bid to be Cardinal Station Stop

December 7, 2014

Oxford, Ohio, is making a push to become a station stop for Amtrak’s Cardinal.

Located on a former Baltimore & Ohio line between Cincinnati and Indianapolis now operated by CSX, it has been more than 60 years since the Butler County college town had passenger rail service.

Oxford and Miami University officials plan to send a joint letter to Amtrak officials asking for the city to be made a scheduled stop for the tri-weekly Chicago-New York Cardinal.

“We have a lot of Miami University students who come from and through Chicago,” Oxford City Manager Douglas Elliott said.

Passenger rail service in Oxford ended in December 1950. Oxford’s long-abandoned B&O station was razed in 1994.

The last passenger trains to stop in Oxford were motor cars operating between Indianapolis and Hamilton, Ohio.

A request to stop the Cardinal in Oxford was rejected by Amtrak in 2009, but city and university officials – along with regional rail advocates – said recent communications show Amtrak now to be more interested in accommodating millennial-aged passengers, of which Miami has about 16,000.

“The conditions have changed with Amtrak and this time we’re more optimistic,” said Elliott.

A rail stop now makes sense argued officials.

Miami students make up the largest portion of Oxford’s 22,000 population, of which 44 percent are between the ages of 20 and 24. University restrictions on vehicles and campus parking make driving scarce and costly.

A growing percentage of Miami’s students are from out-of-state. The school also has attracted many students from the Chicago area, said Miami officials.

“The greater Chicagoland area is home to the largest out-of-state concentration of alumni, and provides us with large numbers of students each year,” said Ray Mock, executive director of the Miami University Alumni Association.

School officials also cite a growing Asian student population, many of whom enter America by flying into Chicago.

“I think an Amtrak route between Oxford and Chicago would be a welcome asset,” said Mock.

Oxford would need a station, which officials said will be similar to a bus shelter, said Derek Bauman, southwest regional director for All Aboard Ohio, a pro-rail group that also backed downtown Cincinnati’s recent streetcar project.