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A Step Forward in Michigan

May 27, 2021

As of Tuesday May 25th, trains in Michigan are running at top speeds of 110 mph on a stretch of track between Kalamazoo and Albion stations. This is the second segment along the Wolverine Corridor to get approved for 110 mph service, joining the Amtrak owned segment between Porter, IN and Kalamazoo. This is an important step towards developing a regional rail line linking Chicago to Detroit with fast, frequent service.

“This expansion of 110 mph service is a major milestone in developing one of the high-performance ‘spokes’ of our Amtrak Midwest hub, centered in Chicago,” said Joe Schacter, Amtrak’s senior manager for state-sponsored corridors.

We strongly support the improvements being made to the Detroit-Chicago Wolverine Corridor and see it as a strong base for improving train service and connectivity throughout the state.

The corridor is densely populated with some of the most dynamic and innovative businesses and institutions in America. It’s also home to one of the longest segments of publicly owned tracks in the nation. This makes it a great place to begin building out a more robust, integrated network of fast, frequent trains coordinated with expanded bus lines.

The Michigan Department of Transportation is taking steady steps towards modern service on the corridor. Expediting this work, with a long term goal of hourly departures, would create vital links among some of the state’s most vibrant cities.

Check out our vision for better train service in Michigan. (This is a joint project with the Michigan Association of Railroad Passengers) A comprehensive plan is the key to making all of this work: fast trains, frequent service, coordinated schedules, fixed bottlenecks and a new railroad hub. This integrated approach is already being followed to revolutionize travel in California, should be used in Michigan and in state rail plans across the country.

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