Re: Connection disconnected IIRC the drawings I recall showed the connection and the extension to opposite the depot.
Date: 09-08-2019 - 12:40
OERM is a relatively well run organization by my reckoning, but not perfect. I think that they've done an outstanding job of preserving and maintaining the collection they have compared to many organizations. I think that has to be a major challenge and has been resource intensive.
The connection and service to the Station has become, for whatever reason, problematic, and for whatever reason, seems to be a low priority. I think that strategically, it could be very advantages, as, it also might allow OERM to generate revenue with the storage of private varnish.
IIRC(?), I do seem to remember drawings I saw, back as early as maybe 2008, that showed a redone Perris Station with the ML platforms, the new parking lot, and the OERM track going across the highway and into the station, for a "direct" cross platform transfer, opposite the station (where I believe that used to come in???) which would be great, as a tourist draw. Imagine 6 trains a day both ways from LA to Perris via Riverside 7 days a week (the minimum we should be running to justify what we spent to rebuild this line and penetrate regional travel markets, like we should have on this line...like in modern "developed" countries....
And, imagine Perris as a "romantic" destination....to drag you suffering wife to, to see trains, (not again honey, I have a headache...)
Imagine that people get off of the train, and have tour of the "historic" station, and have lunch and drink expensive craft beer, or local Temecula wines, while having lunch. And then, they ride a historic trolley to the museum, where the museum has more "E" ticket rides (for those of us old enough to know what that phrase E ticket means....?)…
And, in addition to the collection, "imagine" maybe things like visiting exhibits, (say like Number 18 at the ward Kimball NG collection? Or maybe the historic WWII vehicle guys, or the historic farm equipment guys, or maybe even a Harley show) to showcase Southern California RR History, and it's varied connections to our past....
Potentially, the OERM could be such a tourist draw, and generate more support to sustain it into the future. So while I give them high marks on the basics, solvency, preservation, and maintenance, there has always been a "shyness" about OERM becoming a real tourist draw. In order to get and maintain the public support they will need in the future, and provide more benefit to Perris, as a tourist draw, maybe they need to be operating it with a bit more "PT Barnum" in their thinking.
So, I think it would be wise, and maybe should be a bit higher priority, to leverage political support (including funding for the connection to the ML main, and the extension into the depot, with gates and all), the involvement and cross promotion with the Perris business community, in promoting and linking this as a real "attraction" and "draw" to the City.
Restoring the connections, both the trolley and for equipment exchanges, could be a real "win-win" drawing more numbers and dollars to the museum, and the business community, fulfilling the critical long term mission of getting the kind of numbers and support by connecting folks to this attraction, necessary to sustain it for future generations.