Promoting rail as an integral part of Washington state's transportation solutions.

Train Trek to Spokane

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Join All Aboard Washington on our Train Trek across the Northwest! We are hosting a series of meetings covering cities along the East-West rail corridor that will benefit from daytime passenger train service between Seattle and Spokane.

We're expanding this Train Trek to hear about the present and future of passenger rail service throughout Washington state. How can trains help create a sustainable economic recovery in the state and the region?

Please join us as we hear from

  • State Rep. Tom Dent
  • US Rep. Denny Heck
  • Lawrence J. Krauter, Spokane Airports
  • State Sen. Marko Liias
  • Ron Pate, Washington State DOT Rail, Freight, and Ports Division
  • David Strohmaier, Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority

Please join us on Zoom Thursday night, 6:30-8:30 pm. It will also be streamed at https://www.tvw.org/watch/?clientID=9375922947&eventID=2020081074

Last month's East-West Passenger Rail System feasibility study confirmed that daytime passenger train service connecting Spokane with the Tri-Cities, the Yakima and Kittitas Valleys, and the Puget Sound is technically and financially viable. The study, conducted by consulting firm Steer, concluded that the service is feasible and has the potential to generate significant ridership. While end-to-end run times are long, East-West passenger trains would be much more affordable and accessible for riders in Central and Eastern Washington than many existing intercity bus and flight options.

On August 27, we will delve into the financial aspects of the service, particularly its return on investment and how it can be a successful part of economic recovery for our communities and state. We are inviting candidates for state and local offices to discuss their where they view rail's place in maintaining and developing our infrastructure.

We will also focus on the benefits of daytime East-West trains for the Spokane region. Spokane is already a major stop along Amtrak's long-distance Empire Builder, which only travels through the city at late hours in order to arrive in and depart from Seattle and Portland at convenient times. With daytime East-West service filling in this time gap, Spokane residents, students, and visitors stand to benefit from  improved access to the region's universities, health care facilities, businesses, and leisure opportunities.

Please join us in this online discussion of East-West passenger rail for Spokane, scheduled for August 27, 2020. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $10 so that AAWA can continue to host these important and needed conversations about the future of passenger trains in Washington. Or for a larger donation, we will thank you with an AAWA limited-edition mask.