Monster storm: NE snow cancels CHO to LGA, Amtrak rolls on

All six of the scheduled flights from Charlottesville to New York were cancelled Wednesday, February 2, due to the monster snow storm sweeping across the nation's mid-section, but two of the three trains connecting the two cities ran pretty much on time.

Amtrak's "Crescent" train left Charlottesville's Union Station 14 minutes late February 2 with an estimated on-time arrival in New York's Penn Station. The Lynchburg-based "Northeast Regional" left on time shortly before 9am and is currently on track to reach the Big Apple on time.

An Amtrak spokesperson, Christina Leeds, says that there were some disruptions on the line connecting Philadelphia and New York "for a small period of time" but that the trains rolling through Charlottesville should reach New York.

One that's running late is the "Cardinal." Based the previous night in blizzard-socked Chicago, the "Cardinal" was running over seven hours late. However, according to Amtrak, it too–- unlike the airplanes–- should reach New York City.

Leeds notes that the "Northeast Regional" is following through on its entire run, all the way to snow-slammed Boston.

Although showing an operating profit–- due to much higher-than-predicted use in its first year–- the Virginia run of the "Northeast Regional" remains a mere pilot project whose future may eventually depend on a state subsidy. A bill moving through the General Assembly would create a dedicated fund for such passenger rail projects.

--final paragraph added 11:31am, Tuesday, February 8

Read more on: amtraktrain


Rail, the only way to fly. Off. the rail.

The Cardinal is only running 7 hours late? Standard operating procedure.

So, Hawes, where do you want us to (constructively) criticize the new website layout?

This article shows that Amtrak is a viable alternative to air travel in the Northeast Corridor, especially during bad weather when flights are cancelled.

Official Amtrak figures show that Charlottesville is a State and National leader in the return of passenger rail in the United States:

1. The Northeast Regional Train shown in the picture was Amtrak's best performing state-sponsored train in the nation last year.

2. In Nov 2010, the last month for which figures were available (, Charlottesville had the 4th highest total number of riders in Virginia (11,436).

3. In Nov 2011, Charlottesville had the 2nd fastest % Increase in passengers in Virginia (37%).

One of the top population groups that are turning to trains as a less expensive, safer, and very convenient mode of transit are students (the next generation of leaders), especially those at the University of Virginia. For example, according to a conductor who was on the NE Regional train during one Fall Break morning,

the Lynchburg Train boarded 350 students at Charlottesville on a single train!

Such facts suggest that the return of passenger rail in Virginia and the United States is getting brighter.

Point 3 in my last post should have read:

3. In Nov 2010, Charlottesville had the 2nd fastest % Increase in passengers in Virginia (37%).