Railroads: Wooing the Passengers

Only one of every 50 Americans traveling between two cities takes a train—a statistic that explains why U.S. railroads have lost money on their passenger business every year since 1945. Nonetheless, many railroaders are now more optimistic about passenger trains than they have been for years. They feel that proposed new, fast trains, including a 150-m.p.h. supertrain between New York and Washington on which test runs begin next year, will eventually lure many intercity travelers from cars (now used by 90%) and planes (5%). Meantime, many lines are concentrating on special trains, spruced-up equipment, new services and engaging advertising...

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