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Fast Facts

  • In 1836, the Erie & Kalamazoo Rail Road became the first railroad completed west of the Allegheny Mountains, connecting Toledo with Adrian, Michigan. At first, horses pulled the rail cars, but after the introduction of the steam engine in 1837, the 33-mile journey between the two cities took just three hours.


  • During the heyday of all rail service, Ohio maintained the largest number of track miles of any U.S. state, having some 9,000 miles.,of%20any%20U.S.%20state%2C%20having%20some%203%2C000%20miles.


  • Of the 5,188 miles of active rail lines in Ohio, ownership is as follows:

    • 4,589 miles owned by freight railroads,

    • 210 miles owned by the State of Ohio,

    • 282 miles owned by county or municipal governments or port authorities,

    • 77 miles owned by the federal government,

    • 30 miles owned by tourist railroads.


  • The last passenger trains traveling all the way between Cleveland and Cincinnati ended service on September 1, 1969. After this date, it was not possible to travel south from Cleveland-Columbus-Cincinnati in the same day (though you could travel it from south to north).


  • There are three inter-state trains that operate in Ohio: Cardinal with one Ohio stop in Cincinnati; and Capital Limited and Lake Shore Limited that serve the northern part of the state, each with five Ohio stops. Columbus has not had passenger service since 1979.


  • Ohio is ranked 20th in the nation in transportation infrastructure, based on commute time, public transit usage, and road and bridge quality. Historically, transportation infrastructure has determined where economic growth will take place.

  • Amtrak relies heavily on the cooperation of other railroads to operate routes using tracks that are not owned or controlled by Amtrak. Host railroads are required to provide Amtrak trains “preference” over freight transportation.


  • In 2019, Amtrak spent $40mm in Ohio and employed 52 residents in the state who were paid $5.4mm to serve 7 stations. For comparison, they served 21 stations in Virginia with $124mm spent, and employed 817 residents with wages of $87.1mm.


  • Every $1 invested in public transit creates approximately $4 in economic benefits, and every $1 billion creates nearly 50,000 jobs.


  • Let’s Talk Tourism. Cities with passenger rail systems see greater occupancy rates than cities without passenger rail, even during economic downturns. In “rail cities”, hotel performance was on average 10.9 percent better in terms of both the average daily rate charged for hotel rooms and revenue earned per available room.


  • Currently, 48% of Ohioans live within 25 miles of a station serviced by Amtrak. Restoring the 3C&D would increase that number to nearly 75%.


  • Train travel emits around 66-80% less carbon than planes and cars. Trains also use less energy, use less space, transport more people, and create less noise pollution than other gas or electric powered modes of transportation.

  • Amtrak was created by Congress in 1970 to take over the intercity passenger rail services previously operated by private railroad companies in the United States. Operations began on May 1, 1971. All Aboard Ohio was founded 2 years later in July 1973.


  • The name “Amtrak” results from the blending of the words “America” and “track.” It is properly used in documents with only the first letter capitalized. The railroad is officially known as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation.

  • Amtrak’s 20-train Acela fleet, debuted in 2000, can travel up to 150 mph. in 2022, Acela’s next generation, the larger 28-train Avelia Liberty fleet, can travel upwards of 180mph. These trains were made in America and modeled after France’s TGV high-speed trains.

  • On the top 100 Amtrak routes, train travel was determined to be cheaper 80% of the time, with an average savings of $132.,travel%20was%20cheaper%2080%20percent%20of%20the%20time.

  • All 4 major cities that make up the 3C&D corridor are in the top 10 cities with the highest annual percent change in commuting costs. Cincinnati (59.1%) is #3, Columbus (58%) is 5th, Cleveland is 7th at 55.9 and Dayton is #10 at 51.5%. Only 2 of these cities currently have Amtrak service.

  • I-71 in Cincinnati, the main highway connecting the 3Cs, was the sixth-most congested highway in the country and Columbus was ranked in the top 50 cities with the worst traffic in the country in 2019.

  • The proposed 3C&D route would serve dozens of colleges and universities and connect 18 Fortune 500 companies.

  • 243,812 Ohioans spend at least one hour commuting one-way to work, and about one-third of residents work outside of the counties where they live.

  • Currently in the US, public transit use results in a reduction of 865,000,000 hours of travel time, in a reduction of 450,000,000 gallons of gas being burned and can save over $10,000 per family per year.

  • In 2019, there were 132,000 passengers departing or arriving in Ohio via Amtrak. In addition, 242,811 riders passed through Ohio in 2019, boarding and detraining outside the state.


  • Ohioans can expect to lose an additional 37 to 44 hours every year to traffic congestion during their regular commutes, which works out to be nearly an entire work week of time sitting in traffic.

  • The International Energy Agency (IEA) reports that rail carries 8% of the world's passengers and 7% of freight, yet accounts for just 2% of transport energy use and that high-speed services over long distances constitute an eco-friendly alternative to short-distance air travel by reducing emissions.

  • The Center for Neighborhood Technology study found that high-speed trains around the world emit somewhere between .1 and .3 pounds of carbon dioxide per passenger mile, while planes emit more than .6 pounds and cars more than .5.

  • Amtrak’s economic impact estimates for 3C&D Corridor alone is $130 million annually + $2.6 billion in economic activity from the one-time capital investment.

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