Carbondale / Carbondale

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry and Public Information Officer Roni LaForge about new developments in Amtrak's on-time record, the city's new warming center, and upcoming events.


The Amtrak route between Chicago and Carbondale is the least on-time state-supported passenger rail route in the country … according to Amtrak’s own data.

Amtrak blames the Canadian National Railroad … which owns the tracks … for not giving the passenger trains priority … which is required by law.

City of Carbondale

A new transportation center in downtown Carbondale is getting some federal grant funding.

The Southern Illinois Multi-modal Station project is receiving 14-million dollars from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Better Utilizing Investment to Leverage Development program.

An Effingham man has been sentenced to three years in prison related to a theft on an Amtrak train in Carbondale.

The Jackson County State's Attorney says 33-year-old William Knight, Jr. previously pleaded guilty to Unlawful Use of Weapons by a Felon.

A summer filled with train disruptions for New Orleans visitors has reached its end as Amtrak has restored full service on its Chicago-to-New Orleans line.

The McComb Enterprise-Journal reports the line was restored Wednesday after months of terminating in Jackson, Mississippi.

Amtrak says a Carbondale-bound train struck a vehicle on the tracks in northeast Illinois, causing several cars to derail.

Amtrak passengers should expect delayed departure times on January 22nd due to track improvements by Canadian National Railway.

Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

Amtrak and the Illinois Department of Transportation showed off one of its new locomotives at the Carbondale station Wednesday.

Illinois has received 12 of the 44-hundred horsepower diesel-electric locomotives  that are also being put on routes in Missouri, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Paul Vuichard/WSIL

A Williamson County teenager was killed when an Amtrak train hit his vehicle in Jackson County.

Amtrak Says Its Trains Can Get You to the Eclipse

Jun 28, 2017

If you're planning a trip to Carbondale for the total solar eclipse on August 21st, you might consider riding the train.

Amtrak still has open seats at a discount rate for the eclipse weekend. Whether you're coming from the north or south, Amtrak's Media Relations Officer Marc Magliari says Amtrak is the way to go.

Paul Vuichard/WSIL

A southern Illinois woman survived after her car collided with an Amtrak train.

Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

Illinois U.S. Senator Dick Durbin met Friday with southern Illinois leaders to talk about the impact of proposed federal cuts to transportation.

Durbin says President Trump's plan harshly targets the region.

Carbondale Police

Two Pulaski County men are jailed after police say they tried to transport cannabis into Carbondale on an Amtrak train.

Amtrak says that its passenger numbers in Illinois fell to about 1.3 million in the latest fiscal year, or a decline of about 4 percent.

Amtrak is now charging a $20 baggage fee to customers who bring more than the established limit.

Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari says the allowance is two bags of up to fifty pounds, carried on, plus two personal items, carried on, up to 25 pounds each.

photo of a Greyhound bus

Beginning Friday you can catch a Greyhound bus from the Carbondale train station.  Greyhound officials say they are moving their operation to the Amtrak station on South Illinois Avenue. 

Greyhound area manager Deborah Laney says the move will better serve the transportation needs of the Carbondale community. The bus service will offer three daily departures to St. Louis, MO; Champaign, IL; and Atlanta, GA.  Laney says the new location is only a bus stop and travelers must still purchase tickets online at

Tom Carper
Brian Mackey, Illinois Public Radio

Backers of Amtrak and passenger rail service in Illinois are worried the state's serious financial problems will lead to service reductions.

The lack of a finalized budget for the state has left a lot of programs unfunded or cut.

Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget calls for a $16 million - or 40% - reduction to the funds Amtrak receives from the state.


To mayors and universities around Illinois, state funding for Amtrak should be increasing, not being cut back.

The former chairman of Amtrak told Illinois lawmakers Wednesday that service cuts are inevitable should Gov. Bruce Rauner's proposed 40 percent funding cut takes effect.

Fifty-six Amtrak trains run daily in Illinois. They run from Chicago to St. Louis, to Carbondale, to Quincy and up to Milwaukee, and more travelers are riding them.

Amtrak's former chairman Thomas Carper says he can't say how many, or which of those routes will be dropped.

But he says that will happen if Illinois doesn't come through with about $42 million.

State Budget Cuts Could Reduce Amtrak Service to Region

Apr 13, 2015

The governor's proposed state budget cuts could derail Amtrak service to southern Illinois.


Passenger rail advocates are trying to maintain the state's subsidy for Amtrak.


Gov. Bruce Rauner's proposed state budget would cut 40% from Illinois' funding for Amtrak trains during a time when ridership has been climbing.


When you ride on Amtrak in Illinois and most other states, the tracks don’t belong to Amtrak.  That’s how the government-supported passenger rail line is blaming Canadian National for the on-time performance – or, more accurately, not-on-time performance of its Illini and Saluki routes which run between Chicago and Champaign and Carbondale.


Amtrak will begin looking into expanded service on its route from Chicago to Carbondale, at the behest of Governor Pat Quinn and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin.


Authorities say a worker at a farm chemical company died after his fertilizer truck was struck by an Amtrak train in the east-central Illinois community of Savoy.


Amtrak trains operating out of Chicago to points across Illinois and the Midwest will soon offer free Internet access.


Officials say nearly 5.2 million people boarded and disembarked from Amtrak trains in Illinois in the year that ended on Sept. 30, contributing to record ridership nationally.

Amtrak Deal Avoids Shutdown

Oct 11, 2013

Illinois has agreed to pay more for in-state Amtrak trains. The deal prevents a shutdown of rail service that could have happened as early as next week.

Leaders from all over southern Illinois will be talking transportation at a special summit in Mt. Vernon Wednesday.

The meeting aims to help city, county, and regional planners understand the benefits of having a strong transportation infrastructure... and to also help explain both the state and federal transportation packages.

Matt Davidson is with the Associated Contractors of Illinois... and a member of the Transportation for Illinois Coalition. He says getting around is critical to everyone - no matter their age.