Date of this Version
The primary goal of this project is understand why the passenger rail industry in the United States has fallen short of the rest of the world over the last several decades and to promote the revitalization and re-connection of the passenger rail industry within the United States, with the focus starting in the Midwest. The overall scope of the project is to use existing rail infrastructure, track and existing smaller depots, and new hub terminals to integrate passenger traffic back into the rail industry. As the existing infrastructure becomes outdated and/or worn new infrastructure to support new rail technology will be added. In addition to the phased infrastructure changes and additions, new larger hub terminals will be constructed in key cities that will serve as the major connection points of the system. The hub terminals themselves will be used as the catalyst to re-invent the image of rail travel and regain public interest and support. The goal of the terminals is not to simply build a rail terminal but create a civic space that is connected to the fabric of the city and gets people who are not currently using the system into the space and excited about rail travel. In addition to being the hub for regional rail, the terminals will also serve as hubs for local transit systems as well. Proper connection of buses, light rail, taxies, bicycles, and access (through the other systems) to the local airports, will allow the terminals to function more efficiently on a local level. In addition the design of the terminals will not only facilitate them serving as a physical connection point for transit, but as aesthetic and emotional connection to the heritage of rail travel in the United States. In all this will accomplish creating new an updated image of American rail travel, while maintaining a connection to its heritage, and creating efficient physical connections to greater percentage of the population.