Friday, February 19, 2010

Pic Today 2/19/10


A landmark in downtown Kirkwood, this train station has been dispatching passengers and freight since the 1850s. The present stone station building was built in 1893, and continues to serve as an active station for Amtrak. (The most popular destination is Kansas City.)
QUICK: How many trains come through Kirkwood each day?

According to Mary Leake and Bob Westerholt (volunteer staffers at the station reception desk), 4 Amtrak trains stop in Kirkwood each day -- 2 westbound, 2 eastbound. Add them to 40 freight trains EACH DAY for a current estimate. (When the economy was better, the total reached 60-70 per day.) That's a lot of stopped traffic on Kirkwood Road.

Long coal trains -- loaded with Wyoming's cleaner burning coal -- head east each day through Kirkwood to feed St. Louis' power generation plant . . . and head back west with empty cars to be reloaded.

Travel by train is a joy, and a pleasant alternative to that airport mess. Keep Amtrak in mind, next trip to KC . . .

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