NEWTON — The head of Amtrak celebrated the salvation of Newton’s passenger rail service and said there’s a possibility Wichita could get passenger rail service.
Joe Boardman, Amtrak’s president and CEO, was in Newton on Thursday and called the Southwest Chief, which runs through Newton, a “critical link.” The Southwest Chief carries about 350,000 people a year from Chicago to Los Angeles. The route was threatened in Kansas by aged track.
The Wichita Eagle reports Boardman said Amtrak has invested about $40 million on area rails, which are owned by a railroad. He says Amtrak is also considering the possibility of restoring rail service from Newton through Wichita to link up with Oklahoma and Texas trains.
But he says that depends on whether states and communities are willing to support it.