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Passenger Rail Moving Forward in Kansas

Monday, July 1, 2019 2:40 PM

Contact Deborah Fischer StoutPhone 913-827-8380





Topeka, KS July 1, 2019– Passenger rail, once the scourge of Kansas government, is now a bi-partisan“thing” thanks to a decades-long effort by local business and government leaders, the Northern FlyerAlliance, and a little boost from Governor Laura Kelly.

Despite the fact that Kansas missed its 10-year mark for another state-wide transportation bill duringthe 2019 legislative session, Governor Kelly’s Budget has a line item for Passenger Rail and KDOT is usingthat funding to move the needle forward. This is a first, at least in the memories of the people whosupport Passenger Rail in Kansas.

According to Amtrak, the Heartland Flyer Extension (Oklahoma City to Newton, connecting to theSouthwest Chief) fits right into its new emphasis on state-supported corridors, so they have said theyare “ready to go”. The other major players include BNSF and KDOT. Amtrak is near completion of astudy to determine the final costs for the re-establishment of the corridor. BNSF on the other hand,says they need another study. This time for traffic flow. With Governor Kelly’s new marching orders,KDOT has begun implementation of this new study which should be done over the course of a fewmonths.

There will be local consult meetings in August, so if you are a passenger rail advocate KDOT says itsimportant to attend these meetings and let them know your desires for the expansion of passenger railin Kansas.

History of Passenger Rail studies that either include Kansas or were about Kansas since 2000:

Kansas High Speed Rail Study – 2000

Carter-Burgess Study – 2005

Texas Transportation Institute Study – 2009

KU Return on Investment Study – 2009

Amtrak Feasibility Study - 2010

Service Development Plan – 2011

Amtrak’s Construction Cost Study - 2019

Local KDOT Consult Meeting Dates.....
Be sure to find your date, location and bring friends who support passenger rail!

Monday, August 19, 2019
1:30- 4:30 pm
Northcentral Region—Salina
Kansas Highway Patrol Academy
2025 East Iron
Salina, KS 67401

Tuesday, August 20, 2019
Southcentral Region—Hutchinson
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Atrium Hotel & Conference Center
1400 North Lorraine St.
Hutchinson, KS 67501

Wednesday, August 21, 2019
Southeast Region—Independence
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Independence Civic Center
410 N. Penn Ave.
Independence, KS 67301

Thursday, August 22, 2019
Kansas City Metro Region—Overland Park
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Matt Ross Community Center
8101 Marty Street
Overland Park, KS 66204

Monday, August 26, 2019
Northeast Region – Topeka
1:30 – 4:30 pm
Capital Plaza
1717 SW Topeka Blvd
Topeka, KS 66612

Tuesday, August 27, 2019
Wichita Region – Wichita
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Eugene Metroplex
5015 East 29th Street N
Wichita, KS 67260

Wednesday, August 28, 2019
Southwest Region – Dodge City
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Dodge House Convention Center
2409 West Wyatt Earp Blvd.
Dodge City, KS 67801

Thursday, August 29, 2019
Northwest Region – Hays
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Fort Hays State Union
700 College Drive
Hays, KS 67601