Tacoma Narrows Bridge, photo by C. Hamilton
Tacoma Narrows Bridge, photo by C. Hamilton

Press Coverage

We generate publicity throughout the region for our cause and our partners.

October 27, 2023
KOTA TV: Amtrak could be rolling its way through the Black Hills
'The Federal Railroad Administration is looking into bringing Amtrak to South Dakota.…The federal study is due to Congress next spring and it will be up to Congress to decide if they want to implement service. “They’re only looking at…existing rail infrastructures, such as RCPE line or the Badlands route…,” said Dan Bilka, president, All Aboard Northwest.'

October 18, 2023
YouTube: Train Treks with Dan Bilka

July 27, 2023
Baker City Herald: Train Trek meeting highlights the need for potential new passenger rail services

July 26, 2023
Hells Canyon Journal: Panhandle Well-Represented at Passenger Rail Presentation

A number of Halfway residents attended a presentation in Baker City this past weekend to promote the return of passenger rail service to eastern Oregon and Idaho.

The 2023 Train Trek tour sponsored by All Aboard Northwest (AANW) and the Association of Oregon Rail and Transit Advocates (AORTA) also featured stops in Hood River, Ontario and Weiser, Idaho.

“I learned things that I didn’t know and am excited to share with folks who may be skeptical about the possibilities of us ever getting passenger rail back in Baker City,” added Spring Bartlett, also with P4PR. “For example, the Pioneer Line is highly rated by the Federal Rail Administration as one deemed worthy of receiving funds available in the Infrastructure Bill for study."…

According to Rick Meis, another P4PR member, “One thing that jumped out at me was the short clip AANW showed of the statement Idaho Senator Mike Crapo made to welcome the Greater Northwest Passenger Rail Summit to Boise this past week. He makes it clear that putting the Amtrak Pioneer back on the rails through southern Idaho [and eastern Oregon] is not a partisan issue, but one of serving the needs of rural residents – his constituents. Many of our elected officials in Baker County feel that way, too.”
P4PR’s Judith Fisher said, “Two things stood out to me at the meeting. First, most of the participants present were mostly senior citizens so transport to families, medical facilities and an alternate to winter highways came up a lot, along with the surprising fact that 30 percent of the population does not drive. Second, as cross country passenger train service already demonstrates, there is significant economic benefit to smaller communities along its path.

Bartlett went on to say, “The decision of which lines will get the money will be made this fall. One advantage we have is that the depot does not need much upgrading and it counts towards matching funds. Another point is that passenger trains legally take precedence over freight concerning scheduling, even though the freight companies ignore that currently. The feds are beginning to call the freight companies to account to follow the law. Shorter freight trains and more side-tracks can facilitate better scheduling.…

“The interest in and support for the return of the Pioneer line is exciting!” Fisher said, and Bolgiano added, “The impetus to get a passenger train back to Baker City is alive and well.”

July 26, 2023
Ontario (OR) Argus Observer: Looking at the return of passenger railroad services

July 24, 2023
Representative Jake Fey on Facebook: ""[Rep Jake Fey] was in Boise last week as part of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region's annual summit… one that got news coverage was a panel discussion with other state legislators on current and future opportunities for states to work together in support of passenger rail."

July 23, 2023
Ontario (OR) Argus Observer: Train trek pulls into Weiser

July 22, 2023
Idaho Press: “'Everyone has a train story': Northwest leaders hopeful rail service will return to Idaho”

July 22, 2023
Dakota Free Press: Idaho Wants Amtrak

July 21, 2023
City of Boise E-Newsletter: “This week was rail week in Boise! We welcomed the Greater Northwest Passenger Rail Summit to the City of Trees where we had the privilege of hearing from Stephen Gardner, CEO of Amtrak, as the keynote speaker. Amtrak, in collaboration with local and state governments across the nation and supported by the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, is actively working to revitalize passenger rail travel in the United States.”

July 21, 2023
Elkhorn Media Group: Advocates to Hold Meeting in Baker City to Discuss Restoring Amtrak Passenger Train Service in Eastern Oregon

July 20, 2023
Greater Northwest Passenger Rail Summit videos

July 20, 2023
CBS2 Idaho News: Amtrak comes to Boise to talk future of passenger rail in Idaho

July 20, 2023
Idaho 6 News: Treasure Valley leaders discuss Northwest passenger train system that would connect us to cities near and far

July 20, 2023
Idaho 6 News: The Greater Northwest Passenger Rail Summit sparks talks about passenger rail service in Boise

July 20, 2023
KTVB-TV/MSN: Treasure Valley leaders pushing for passenger train service, Amtrak CEO in Boise

July 20, 2023
KBOI Boise/MSN: Amtrak comes to Boise to talk future of passenger rail in Idaho

July 20, 2023
Boise State Public Radio: Discussion on bringing passenger train service back to Boise hitting high gear

July 20, 2023
Rail.chat: Celebrating an outstanding Greater Northwest Passenger Rail Summit

July 19, 2023
Bend Bulletin: All Aboard NW to host stakeholder meeting toward restoring Amtrak passenger train

July 19, 2023
Baker City Herald: All Aboard NW to host stakeholder meeting toward restoring Amtrak passenger train

July 19, 2023
Weiser Signal American: Could passenger rail service return to Weiser?

July 18, 2023
Newswires: Fey participating in this week’s Pacific Northwest Economic Regional Foundation’s annual summit

July 16, 2023
Ontario (OR) Argus Observer: Advocates meet to discuss restoring passenger rail service in eastern Oregon and Idaho

July 14, 2023
Go Eastern Oregon: Returning Passenger Trains to a Station Near You: Why and How

July 13, 2023
Columbia Gorge News: Returning Passenger Trains to a Station Near You: Why and How

July 13, 2023
KTGA Bigfoot 99 Radio: Discover Carbon County Sponsors Passenger Train Meeting
“Tonight, Discover Carbon County, formerly known as the Carbon County Visitor’s Council, and the AANW are hosting a meeting in Rawlins titled Returning Passenger Trains to a Station Near You: Why and How.…Hamilton said the meeting in Rawlins will address the lack of passenger train travel available in Wyoming.”

July 4, 2023
Tri-City Herald: Wouldn’t it be great if Tri-Citians could take a train directly to Seattle and back?
"All Aboard Washington (AAWA)… has proposed restoring passenger rail between Pasco and Seattle through Yakima and Ellensburg. A study, “Feasibility of an East-West Intercity Passenger Rail System for Washington State,” showed that passenger rail service between Seattle, Auburn, Cle Elum, Ellensburg, Yakima, Toppenish, Pasco, and Spokane is technically and financially viable.… Shouldn’t some of that money be used to restore passenger rail service from Pasco to Seattle through the Valley? Our Badger Club forum speakers will be Charles Hamilton, [co-executive director] of All Aboard Washington, and Jason Biggs, program manager of Capital and Operations for the Washington Department of Transportation’s Rail, Freight, and Ports Division.
The hour-long forum will begin at noon and be held on Zoom, and attendees can attend a half-hour open mic “Table Talk” session immediately afterward. Club members attend free, while non-members pay $5. Register at www.columbiabasinbadgers.com."

June 20, 2023
Seattle Times: Amtrak’s Seattle maintenance-base plans would take over a Sodo street
“The passenger-advocacy group All Aboard Washington supports a Holgate closure, because less accident risk means more reliable service when trains arrive from Portland. “You’re only a few minutes from King Street Station. You feel like you’re almost there. They get on the PA and say, ‘We’re stopping.’ There’s traffic, or a truck that has blocked the intersection. That happens,” said Charlie Hamilton, co-executive director.”

May 21, 2023
Deseret News: Utah seeks to study rail service from Salt Lake to Boise, Las Vegas
“The possible commuter rail study comes as passenger rail advocates pushed for Utah to consider adding more rail service. Dan Bilka, the co-founder of the nonprofit rail advocacy organization All Aboard Northwest, told KSL.com last year that he believes trains could help improve the country's transportation infrastructure, providing more options than what's on the road or in the air.”

April 19, 2023
Hells Canyon Journal: "Grassroots Group Works To Reinstate Eastern Oregon Passenger Rail Service"

March 15, 2023
Real Change News: “#Washington state could be squandering a unique opportunity to invest in expanded passenger #rail service with federal funds that were authorized in the 2021 bipartisan infrastructure act, transportation advocates say.”

March 6, 2023
KIMA TV: Advocates say a new federal study could bring a passenger train route back through Yakima

March 4, 2023
Yakima Herald: Advocates hope federal passenger rail study will include Yakima Valley

March 1, 2023
High Country News: Trains in the West then, now — and someday?

September 19, 2022
KSL News: A Utah train to Idaho? Salt Lake, Boise leaders are working to restore old service

August 21, 2022
KSL News: Do Utah and the West need more passenger trains? These groups make the argument

August 19, 2022
Sweetwater Now: RS City Council Hears Pitch on Return of Passenger Train Service

August 18, 2022
Western Governors' Association: Best of the West: Regional investments in trains

August 17, 2022
Wyoming News: Transforming a community: Guest speakers share benefits of passenger rail service

August 17, 2022
City of Rock Springs YouTube: Returning Passenger Trains to a Station Near You

August 14, 2022
La Grande Observer: All Aboard Northwest stops in La Grande to advocate for passenger rail

August 11, 2022
La Grande Observer: All Aboard Northwest comes to La Grande to advocate for passenger rails

August 11, 2022
East Oregonian: All Aboard Northwest comes to Pendleton to advocate for passenger rails

August 11, 2022
Elkhorn Media Group: A Push for Passenger Rail in the Pacific Northwest

August 10, 2022
Salt Lake City Weekly: All Aboard

June 16, 2022
Railway Age: Forbes and Ike Brannon Have It All Wrong
Opinion from AANW's Dan Bilka. "Ignoring the “Hinterlands,” the heartland of America, as Jack Kemp Institute Senior Fellow Ike Brannon champions in his Forbes article, “Amtrak’s Expansion To The Hinterlands Will Be Costly To The Government & The Economy,” will in reality be expensive to the U.S. government, the economy and the American way of life."

May 6, 2022
Wyoming Public Media: A non-profit organization is advocating for the return of passenger rail service in rural regions
"All Aboard Northwest is…advocating for expanding passenger rail service to underserved or unserved communities in the Pacific Northwest, the Mountain West, and the Midwest. Formally launched earlier this year, it’s involved in lobbying efforts, community engagement and education…on how passenger access would affect communities."

February 16, 2022
AAWA Discusses Rail Funding on KING5 TV

January 18, 2022
Fast Company: AAWA's Charles Hamilton on why the Pioneer and North Coast Hiawatha lines should be revived

December 23, 2021
Elkhorn Media Group: Rail advocates discuss return to passenger service

December 3, 2021
Cheney Free Press: "All Aboard Washington will host an online meeting Saturday, Dec. 11, to review actions being planned for next year in the organization’s effort to return passenger train service to several Eastern Washington cities."

November 18, 2021
AAWA's Charlie Hamilton expresses confidence in the new bypass route on KIRO TV

November 18, 2021
"Rail advocates argue new lines will grow the economy, shrink mobility inequalities and help decarbonize the region" AAWA's Hamilton interviewed

November 16, 2021
"Yakima could see highway, airport and rail funding as a result of infrastructure bill"

November 11, 2021
AAWA's Charles Hamilton weighs in on "What the infrastructure bill might do for rail transportation in Washington and Idaho" in the Spokane Spokesman-Review.

September 27, 2021
All Aboard Washington's Patrick Carnahan speaks about rail safety on KHQ Spokane.

September 9, 2021
Ritzville Journal: "To Cheney and Ritzville, a new rail system implies increased connectivity to traditionally bypassed towns, and a much-needed economic boost."

August 31, 2021
The Urbanist: "All Aboard Washington Releases New Passenger Rail Vision Map"

August 26, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Cheney

August 20, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Ellensburg and Cle Elum

August 19, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Spokane and Cheney

August 18, 2021
Pacific Northwest Rail Forum

August 10, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Tri-Cities

August 6, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Clarkston-Lewiston

August 3, 2021
AAWA is front-page news in Ritzville

August 3, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Edmonds

August 2, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Walla Walla

August 2, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Toppenish

July 31, 2021
2021 Train Trek: Yakima

July 30, 2021
2021 Train Trek

July 30, 2021
2021 Train Trek Levenworth

July 30, 2021
2021 Train Trek Wenatchee

June 7, 2021
AAWA's Patrick Carnahan's article on "Reviving a Rail Revolution: How Washington Can Get Back On Track"

May 26, 2021
Spokane Spokesman-Review: Amtrak loses money on long-distance routes like the Empire Builder, but passengers say they offer a service worth investing in (PDF)
'Harvey Bowen, the Rail Passengers Association’s Washington state representative, said adding trips on shorter-distance routes could help fix some of the shortcomings of Amtrak’s long-distance routes.
'“One of the major existing problems with the Empire Builder, and indeed many existing routes, is that it serves certain cities in the middle of the night, such as Spokane,” Bowen wrote in an email.
'“There also is not enough equipment so the train is often sold out,” he added. “Due to being chronically sold out, ticket prices rise and is a problem for equity with people who have limited financial resources to travel.”
'Investing in more frequent trips on shorter routes could also make train travel more popular as it becomes more convenient, said Charlie Hamilton, co-executive director of the rail travel advocacy group All Aboard Washington.
'“One train a day is fine as a starting point, but it needs to be multiple (trains) in order to be successful,” he said. “If you look at California, the fact that they have been so successful is very much related to the fact that they run very frequently.”'
Orion Donovan-Smith's reporting for The Spokesman-Review is funded in part by Report for America and by members of the Spokane community. This story can be republished by other organizations for free under a Creative Commons license.

April 22, 2021
The Urbanist says "Passenger rail advocacy group All Aboard Washington has suggested restoring Cascades’ northern service to Bellingham and even Blaine despite the border closure."

April 21, 2021
Rapid City Journal: BILKA: A South Dakota passenger rail vision

April 13, 2021
AAWA's Patrick Carnahan talks about transportation equity for all parts of the state on KHQ television, Spokane (around 6 minutes into the episode).

March 11, 2021
The Urbanist posts about AAWA's presentation to the WA House Transportation Committee

March 10, 2021
Spokane Spokesman-Review: "Pandemic relief bill would restore daily Empire Builder train service — and advocates push for more"

February 16, 2021
Sierra Club Washington: "How passenger rail is integral to our environmental goals and can help fight climate change"

January 17, 2021
KIRO 7 TV: "Amtrak testing trains at Point Defiance Bypass for first time since deadly 2017 derailment"

November 9, 2020
"Daily passenger rail service ends in Spokane; can it come back?"