All Aboard Washington
PO Box 70381
Seattle, WA 98127-0381
July 6, 2021
Getting Northwest Trains Back on Track!
With an end in sight for the pandemic in Washington, Northwest Amtrak routes are starting to return to pre-2020 service levels. All Aboard Washington celebrates the return of two daily Cascades round trips and the restart of daily Coast Starlight and Empire Builder service. Communities across the state will appreciate the many economic, equity, and environmental benefits provided by rail transportation as we look to recover from the pandemic.
But many challenges remain for keeping Washingtonians well-connected by rail:
- Service north of Seattle has not restarted;
- The frequencies promised in 2017 have not returned;
- New equipment to replace the retired Talgo VIs is years away; and
- Daytime service between Spokane, Yakima, and Seattle has not been started.
All Aboard Washington is working hard to make these improvements happen! With more attention being paid toward rail across the nation, our efforts in Olympia and Washington, DC are making a bigger impact than ever before. Over the past year, we’ve built stronger connections with partners across the region and the country to push for a serious re-examination of our transportation priorities.
Our Plans For 2021
It’s been ages since our last in-person events and we’ve missed you! With pandemic restrictions starting to relax across the Northwest, AAWA is planning several major events to reconnect with you and make the most of renewed interest in passenger rail in 2021.
Train Trek Across Washington — August (East-West)
We did it virtually in 2020, but in 2021 we’re bringing it on the rails: AAWA’s Train Trek Across Washington! This year, AAWA plans to visit communities across the state to talk about the many exciting happenings in Northwest rail and to hear from you about your community’s top transportation priorities.
We will complete the Trek in two separate legs, with the first (East-West) focusing on Stampede Pass corridor communities and the second (North-South) focusing on the Cascades corridor. The East-West Train Trek will happen between August 12 and 22. Visit www.aawa.us/impact/2021-train-trek to see our list of planned stops in Everett-Snohomish County, Leavenworth, Wenatchee, Yakima-Union Gap, Toppenish-Zillah, Prosser-Sunnyside, Pasco-Richland-Kennewick, Walla Walla-College Place, Dayton, Clarkston-Lewiston, Spokane Area, Pullman-Colfax, Ritzville, Moses Lake-Ephrata, Ellensburg and to register for a meeting near you.
More Regional and National Collaboration
AAWA is making your voice louder! We are connecting with disability rights, environmental, and economic development advocacy organizations to broaden the coalition of supporters behind passenger rail. We are collaborating with new rail organizations like the Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority. By working together, we can make better trains a reality for more Washingtonians.
East-West Stories Video
Legislators need to hear from YOU about why East-West passenger rail matters! AAWA believes a professional-quality video telling the stories of Central and Eastern Washingtonians would show our representatives in Olympia just how much value East-West trains deliver to our state. We will start laying the groundwork for this video in 2021 for a planned debut next year.
Our Goals For Making It Happen
After over a century of neglect, the foundations of a new American rail network could finally be laid in 2021. But even with tremendous federal and local support, attacks on Amtrak are already underway, and rail advocates across the country need to be actively engaged in the fight for better trains. We’re honored and excited to be involved in this movement as your voice! It isn’t easy, though; your AAWA executives, directors, and staff do a lot of work to keep up with the daily changes happening across America. With more things to do and pay attention to, we need more resources to keep you informed and serve our increasingly relevant mission.
Our 2021 plans can only happen with your help! We need an additional $7,000 by July 31, 2021 in order to prepare for the Train Trek, plan for our East-West Stories video, and continue our efforts to connect with other like-minded advocacy groups across the Northwest. Without it, we may not be able to fulfill our goals and make the most of this one-in-a-generation chance to transform the role of rail in Washington and beyond. YOUR tax-deductible gift can make the difference!
Thank you for continuing to support AAWA’s work to make Washington more accessible, environmentally sustainable, and business-friendly for our future generations. Donate today at https://www.aawa.us/support/ or mail your check to All Aboard Washington, P.O. Box 70381, Seattle, WA 98127-0381.
President, Board of Directors
All Aboard Washington