Rally Indicates Statewide Support for More Passenger Trains

March 12, 2019

For immediate release: March 12, 2019

Supporters Rally at the State Capitol for more Passenger Trains in Minnesota
Event activated supporters of passenger rail expansion to meet with their legislators

March 12, 2019 (St.Paul, MN) The passenger rail advocacy group All Aboard Minnesota conducted a rally for more passenger train service in Minnesota at the State Capitol on March 6, 2019. More than 70 supporters from around the state attended, coming from Brainerd, Winona, Red Wing, St. Cloud, Duluth and the Twin Cities metro area.

The event spurred action for supporters to meet individually with their legislators for more passenger rail service as defined in the MnDOT passenger rail plan. Supporters reported that their legislators were positive for legislation to fund more passenger service,

The event highlighted new planned service from the Twin Cities to Duluth, and additional service between the Twin Cities and Chicago, with extended services to St.Cloud and Fargo eventually bringing new and expanded service to 25 out-state communities.

Representatives Dan Wolgamott, Alice Hausman, Frank Hornstein, and Senators Melisa Franzen, Jerry Newton, and Senate President Jeremy Miller all spoke at the event in support of more passenger train service for the state. Representative Hausman stated: "Many other Midwestern states are investing in passenger rail, they see the benefits. We are being left behind and it will hurt our economic competitiveness if we don't step up."

Rail advocacy groups such as the Great River Rail Commission, Northern Lights Alliance, West Central Wisconsin Rail Coalition, Smart Transportation, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center presented at the event. Amtrak and MnDOT representatives also attended.

All Aboard Minnesota President Brian Nelson stated: "For the first time in years there is real momentum in the House and Senate to fund more passenger trains in Minnesota, with several funding bills introduced in both houses, and the Governor's Bonding request for $11m. Now is the perfect time to raise awareness within the legislature about the benefits of more passenger trains."

"More passenger trains offer tremendous economic and mobility benefits," Nelson added. "The additional service between the Twin Cities and Chicago would alone generate about $23M in net benefit to the state, along with reducing 15 million car miles in this corridor when this new service is provided.* For many types of travelers who do not like or cannot drive or fly, the train offers a real alternative," Nelson added.

About All Aboard Minnesota
All Aboard Minnesota is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit advocacy and education organization focused on the expansion and development of more long distance rail passenger service as part of a balanced transportation system. We are dedicated to the development of fast, comfortable, frequent, intercity passenger train services within and connecting Minnesota to the upper Midwest.

For more information, All Aboard Minnesota can be reached at (612) 781-2894 or on the Web at: www.allaboardmn.org.

*Rail Passenger Association report "Impacts from a Second Train to Minnesota." Full report can be found: https://www.allaboardmn.org/riding-on-a-train/economic-and-environmental-benefits-of-passenger-rail/

2019 All Aboard Minnesota. All other trademarks are the sole property of their respective owners.