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Amtrak begins daily service to Arcadia Valley, Missouri

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

arcadia valley trainstationAmtrak began daily service in a region in Southern Missouri that has been without passenger rail service for 48 years when the Amtrak Texas Eagle (Trains 21/421 & 22/422) stops at the Arcadia Valley Station in Arcadia, Mo., on Nov. 20.

The city was added to the Amtrak national network largely through an advocacy and planning effort coordinated by Our Town Tomorrow (OTT), a local non-profit organization focused on community revitalization. A passenger platform was constructed and other improvements totaling more than $600,000 were made at a 75-year-old depot to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. OTT received funding from the Iron County Economic Partnership, the William Edgar Foundation and won a Transportation Enhancement Grant from the Missouri Department of Transportation.

This stop is the closest Amtrak station to the Missouri Ozarks region. It is near Taum Sauk, the highest peak in the St. Francois Mountains, the largest mountain range between the Appalachians and the Rocky Mountains. Three state parks, the Mark Twain National Forest, the Ozark Trail, float trips on Black River and numerous conservation and wilderness areas are also nearby. In addition, the Fort Davidson State Historic Site at Pilot Knob, where in 1864 an assault by Confederate troops left 1,500 soldiers dead or wounded, is in this region.

The idea of adding a stop in the Arcadia Valley on the Ozark Plateau was first suggested by residents at a 2010 meeting of the local chamber of commerce. At the time, the daily Texas Eagle passed by without a scheduled stop between St. Louis and Poplar Bluff, Mo., a distance of 169 miles. The greater Arcadia Valley had not had regular passenger rail service since 1968, when it was discontinued by the Missouri Pacific Railroad (MP).

MP opened the depot in Arcadia in 1941 to replace earlier structures located in Arcadia and nearby in Ironton, Mo. Due to the communities’ proximity, northbound trains had stopped only in the former while all southbound trains called on the latter.

Most Amtrak travel documents are eTickets sold via Amtrak.com, our mobile apps or by calling 800-USA-RAIL. The Arcadia stop (station code ACD) is not staffed, with the nearest Amtrak ticket offices at the stations in St. Louis and Little Rock.

Daily adult coach fares from Arcadia, prior to discounting, range from $18-34 to St. Louis, $51-106 to Chicago, $42-96 to Little Rock and $92-178 to Ft. Worth. Three days weekly, adult coach fares range from $123-276 to El Paso, $155-276 to Tucson and $156-311 to Los Angeles, when a portion of the Texas Eagle (Trains 421 & 422) operates west of San Antonio with the Amtrak Sunset Limited (Trains 1 & 2).

The Texas Eagle also connects daily in Ft. Worth to the Amtrak Heartland Flyer (Trains 821 & 822), with service to Oklahoma City and adult coach through fares ranging from $123-229, also prior to discounting.

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