Re: Perris connection followup, and my solution for weekend service....
Date: 04-13-2019 - 16:39
Absolutely, I worked with several folks down there who served on the ML Board, who have since retired, but in our discussions back then, I had always assumed this was the game plan. Of course, that's before the 91 widening "ate" RCTC's sales tax, and all of that money that was finally spent on the San Jacinto Branch by RCTC, didn't leave enough, to run very much service on week days, and none at all on weekends.
And, I recall discussions about the ability of the City to market and increase events in Perris, in conjunctions with the Airport and the OERM/Sou Cal RR Museum. This seems something partly done, and now for some reason stalled. This and the airport are the only to "draws" in poor old Perris, and maybe it's biased sampling. Except for once, when I had to go to a transportation planning meeting at the Perris City Hall, I ain't been to Perris, or eaten lunch there, for any other reason than the "choo-choo's". So it is an economic draw to the City (although I think that the Museum itself could be better marketed and promoted, too).
And, despite some snark, I still did not get a real answer, as to why this has stalled. Is it an institutional issue of some kind, as some have asserted, or is it really a matter of dollars, or both? This kind of project is actually eligible for a transportation enhancement grant (actually made much easier by the City's ownership of that segment), and I've seen way worse so-called "enhancement" projects funded, which would a lot less economic or "public good" than this might do for poor old historic "downtown" Perris.
A rail connection out in the am from the City, to OERM could be a fantastic draw. And, when 3751 is ready again, it could make the run (if it can be turned?). Hell, if UP can charge $3000 for a 3 hour coach excursion, maybe ML should just hire the 3751, to make the run on the weekends, and make a profit from weekend passenger service to Perris?