Our New Vision

TrainRiders Northeast brought the Downeaster to Portland, ME in 2001 and Brunswick ME in 2012.  Our New Vision:  An across the platform, Amtrak connection at Boston’s North Station, serving Worcester, Springfield, Hartford, New Haven & New York’s Penn Station. Our continued success depends on your donation. Use our PayPal button to help us reach this goal. Many thanks for your continued support. Wayne Davis, Chairman


Summaries of NNEPRA's monthly board meetings

NNEPRA January, 2019 Board Meeting

Executive Director Patricia Quinn presented the latest Downeaster Performance Report summarizing the first two quarters of FY2019.

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Ridership: Each of the six months showed uneven variations, but the bottom line on actual ridership revealed a small decrease from the targeted goal (-1% or 280,726 vs. 284,036). Ms. Quinn reported that ridership in January would likely exceed the targeted goal.

Revenue: The numbers exceeded slightly the projected farebox ($5,273,148 vs. $5,265,446).

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Read more: NNEPRA January, 2019 Board Meeting

NNEPRA's 2018 Fiscal Year Ends with Strong Numbers

The NNEPRA Board heard an impressive report on FY2018, which came to an end on June 30th.


FY2018Executive Director Patricia Quinn pointed out that FY2018 was the second strongest period in the Downeaster's history, missing setting a new record by just 5,000 riders. Ridership grew 7.75% over FY2017. There was also good news on ticket revenue. It came in at $10,245,061 - exceeding $10 million for the first time and the previous fiscal year by $1,624,943 or nearly 19%! 

Ontime performance continued to be a problem. So far this calendar year it has averaged 70%. NNEPRA, Amtrak and PanAM will be meeting soon to how best to address the problem.

The Downeaster's overall customer satisfaction continued to outpace Amtrak nationally, 90-83.

NNEPRA June Board Meeting - Ridership/Revenue Growth and Kennebunk Stop Presentation

6 25 18PerformRidership/Revenue: NNEPRA Executive Director Patricia Quinn reported on 11 months of FY2018. Ridership is already ahead of FY2017 by 37,013. It's now half a million! Revenue is $1,464,665 ahead of the same 11-month period in FY2017! No matter how you figure it, the Downeaster continues its solid growth. May on-time performance came in at a disappointing 68% while May Overall All Customer Satisfaction hit 90 (Amtrak's overall percentage was 78). 

Fall Construction: This fall will see construction projects that will reduce expected ridership/revenue as some 15,000 ties will be replaced between Wells and Dover, necessitating busing between the two stations. In addition, there will be an extensive outage in Saco as bridge timbers across the Saco River are replaced along with the Main Street crossing.

Kennebunk Downeaster Stop: This month the Kennebunk Board of Selectmen voted, by a 6-0 tally, to officially request of NNEPRA a seasonal stop. This action has been four plus years in the making but was welcomed by the board as "serving more Mainers with passenger rail."

TrainRiders/NE talked with Ms. Quinn about the expected 2019 service (contracts still need to be written and signed). Three town officials, including the Interim Economic Development Director Jim Black, presented their modified proposal to the board. 

Six of the ten trains will likely be stopping in Kennebunk though Ms. Quinn noted that the specific trains have yet to be identified.. #680 will not be one of them because it is already sold out on a regular basis.

No Amtrak Service to Rockland This Year

Rockland Extension: At today's NNEPRA Board Meeting in Portland, Executive Director Patricia Quinn informed those present that Amtrak is unable to perform the required risk-assessment of the Rockland branch this year due to the need to assess all their existing routes because of PTC and 'dark territory' issues. Brunswick to Rockland would be a new route. 

 Ms. Quinn pledged to work closely with Amtrak so that a "more robust" proposal for Midcoast service can be accomplished next year.

Read more: No Amtrak Service to Rockland This Year

Planned Rockland Extension's Schedule Reduced Due to New Amtrak Safety Requirements - THIS IS NOW OUTDATED

Today's NNEPRA Board Meeting was expected to give the 'Go-ahead'  for the summer Coastal Connection Service between Brunswick and Rockland. That did not happen. What was approved was a decision to move forward with an August weekend service, but with four important conditions:

1. An Amtrak-CMQ agreement being reached.

2. A positive MeDOT infrastructure report on the branch line

3. A trip no longer than two and a quarter hours.

4. The service must meet all Amtrak and FRA requirements

Several members of the public expressed their disappointment, particularly those along the midcoast. 

Read more: Planned Rockland Extension's Schedule Reduced Due to New Amtrak Safety Requirements - THIS IS NOW...