Amtrak is taking an important step forward in updating their accounting structure to provide a more comprehensive view of Amtrak’s finances, which should improve the decision making process. This is taking place as a result of section 11201 of the 2015 FAST act that requires the FRA and Amtrak to work together to restructure the accounting process.

Through the FAST Act, Congress separated the National Network and the Northeast Corridor into different funds. The new accounting structure was included in the FAST act for two major reasons. Stakeholders in the National Network thought that NEC infrastructure maintenance was taking too much of the overall funding. The NEC stakeholders are convinced that their services are profitable and that all of those profits should be put back into the NEC.

Last week the FRA released an outline of the new structure. It is too early to tell if it will provide an accurate representation of the true costs of running the National Network and the NEC. Much of Amtrak’s costs are overhead costs, which include advertising, legal fees, taxes and more. Decisions on how these costs are allocated will greatly change how the finances are presented and understood.

We are happy with the progress being made and are hopeful that the final product will provide stakeholders accurate information on how revenues, appropriations and grants are used.


Dylan Hayward
Program Manager

Last Week at MHSRA:

The Rail Construction Equipment (RCE) and the Railway Engineering-Maintenance Suppliers Association invited MHSRA to attend an event with Congresswoman Bustos (D-IL-17), GoRail and Union Pacific. We had the opportunity to tour the RCE’s maintenance facility and discuss strategies for extending passenger train service to Rockford, Illinois.

Articles We Enjoyed:

The Future of Chicago Union Station Lies in its Past
“Union Station was designed to accommodate an additional 14 stories. Today, Amtrak is seeking a developer to make good on that vision.”

NICTD Gains Federal Approval to Develop Double Tracking Project
“A planned double track project in Indiana may move forward following a key approval from the Federal Transit Administration”

Stealth Train
“Forces are aligning in Minnesota to bring foreign and domestic funders together on the world’s first privately capitalized high-speed rail (HSR) corridor—a 77-mile, 200 mph train that will connect the MSP region with Rochester.”

Moroccan High-Speed Line to Open in June 2018
“Director general of Moroccan National Railways, said the 183km high-speed line under construction between Tangiers and Kenitra will open in June 2018.”

China to Build 400km/h Train for Russia’s High-Speed Railway
“China is developing a new generation of trains capable of reaching speeds of 400 kilometers per hour for Russia’s Moscow-Kazan high-speed railway”

Upcoming Events:

Japan High-Speed Rail Tour

Join us this September to discover how Japan’s high speed network relates to the future of high speed rail in the United States. We will ride the world’s first high speed line, Japans newest and fastest high speed trains and enjoy the sights in Tokyo and Kyoto.

Call the Society of International Railway Travelers at 800-478-4881 to reserve your spot before it’s too late.

Please click here to learn more about the trip

Franklin Park Fest featuring Railroad Daze

Visit our booth, enjoy train viewing, and a celebration of Franklin Park’s railroad heritage at this annual event, which features live music and a wide variety of food.

If you are available to volunteer at our booth please send an email to [email protected]

When: June 11th, 10:00am – 3:00pm for Railroad Daze, the larger festival will continue until 10:30pm

Where: Franklin Avenue & Calwagner Street (9700 Franklin Ave.), Franklin Park, IL 60131

Cost: Entry is Free

Dylan Hayward
Program Manager
Midwest High Speed Rail Association
4765 N. Lincoln Ave.
Chicago, IL 60625

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