Passenger rail service between Indianapolis and Chicago will continue, at least through the end of January. The Indiana Department of Transportation and communities along the Hoosier State route have agreed to a four-month contract extension with Corridor Capital LLC. The future of the route remains in question as Indianapolis weighs its long-term financial commitment. Federal support for the Hoosier State Line ended last year, leaving operational costs to local communities and the state. August 20, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — The Indiana Department of Transportation and the communities of Indianapolis, Crawfordsville, Rensselaer, Lafayette, West Lafayette, Tippecanoe County and Beech Grove announce plans to continue Hoosier State passenger rail service between Indianapolis and Chicago through Jan. 31, 2015.
INDOT and the local communities have agreed to use the four-month contract extension allowed under the state’s existing agreement with Amtrak. INDOT is also negotiating with Corridor Capital LLC to improve the service and its funding model by the end of the contract extension in January.
“For the Hoosier State, we are hoping to build from the experience of North Carolina’s successful Piedmont service, in which the state and its private contractors worked with Amtrak to improve and grow passenger rail,” said INDOT multimodal director Robert Zier.
The Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act ended federal support for certain Amtrak routes of less than 750 miles effective October 2013. Indiana was the first in the nation to seek competing proposals from independent providers as allowed by the Act. Corridor Capital partnered with RailPlan International, which has provided train inspection and maintenance services for state-supported passenger rail services in North Carolina and Maryland, to submit the highest-scoring among four proposals.
About the Hoosier State
The Hoosier State and Amtrak’s long-distance Cardinal services combine to provide once-daily, roundtrip passenger rail service between Indianapolis and Chicago with stops in Crawfordsville, Lafayette, Rensselaer and Dyer. To purchase tickets, call 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245) or visit www.amtrak.com/cardinal-hoosier-state-train
Source: Indiana Department of Transportation