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Draft 2019 State Rail Plan – Forecasts of passenger rail ridership

The State Rail Plan looks at four different ridership scenarios for Amtrak Cascades in 2040 and compares them to the 2018 base year actual ridership levels.

Scenarios Frequency and Travel Time by Segments Reliability Train Capacity (seats)
Vancouver BC to Seattle Seattle to Portland Portland to Eugene
2018 Base year 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 245 minutes 4 daily round trips with a travel time of 210 minutes 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 155 minutes 56% 268
Baseline scenario 2040 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 240 minutes 6 daily round trips with a travel time of 200 minutes 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 155 minutes 88% 268
Low growth scenario 2040 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 240 minutes 8 daily round trips with a travel time of 190 minutes 2 daily round trips with a travel time of 155 minutes 90% 300
Moderate growth scenario 2040 3 daily round trips with a travel time of 230 minutes 8 daily round trips with a travel time of 190 minutes 4 daily round trips with a travel time of 145 minutes 90% 300
High growth scenario 2040 4 daily round trips with a travel time of 157 minutes 13 daily round trips with a travel time of 150 minutes 6 daily round trips with a travel time of 140 minutes 95% 300
Amtrak Cascades ridership, 2018 and 2040 scenarios
Amtrak Cascades ridership, 2018 and 2040 scenarios

The State Rail Plan also includes information on projected ridership for Amtrak’s two long-distance trains and historical ridership trends for Sound Transit’s commuter rail system. Sounder commuter rail ridership is projected to reach 8 to 11 million by 2040 with planned investments.

Empire Builder and Coast Starlight ridership projection, Fiscal Year 2018 – 2040
Empire Builder and Coast Starlight ridership projection, Fiscal Year 2018 – 2040
Sounder train annual ridership by lines, 2009 – 2018
Sounder train annual ridership by lines, 2009 – 2018

More details on ridership forecasts for all types of passenger rail are available in Chapter 4 of the State Rail Plan.

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