Opportunity to Hang with National Rail/Transit Geeks

From a press release I just sent out. I hope the Portland Transport crowd will be well represented!

National Transit Passenger Advocates
Hold Outreach Meeting in Portland

Board Members of Rail Users’ Network to meet with Portland transit users and advocates.

October 1, 2008 – RUN – the Rail User’s Network will hold an outreach meeting in Portland on Wednesday, October 15th at 7pm. The meeting will be held in Room C on the 2nd floor of the Portland Building, 1120 SW 5th Ave.

The meeting will present a rare opportunity for rail advocates in Portland and elsewhere in the Northwest Region to meet with the counterparts from elsewhere in the nation, to exchange ideas for improving both transit in the region and advocacy efforts toward better transit. “Cities like Portland and Seattle represent the future in American transit, where new lines get people out of their automobiles and into downtown” said David Peter Alan, a RUN Board member and a rail advocate in New Jersey. He also stated: “We also want to help the advocacy movement grow in places like Portland, so transit riders can have as much of a voice as possible in making decisions about their transit.”

The RUN meeting will feature representatives from the Citizens’ Advisory Committee for the Portland Streetcar, the Association of Oregon Rail and Transit Advocates (AORTA) and All Aboard Washington, a coalition of Washington State rail advocates. RUN members from other regions will attend the meeting, as well. The meeting is scheduled to coincide with the Fall meeting of the National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP), which begins the next day. NARP advocates at the national level for improvements in Amtrak intercity trains. A number of NARP Directors are also expected to attend the RUN meeting.

Chris Smith, chair of the Portland Streetcar Citizens Advisory Committee is acting as local host. If you are interested in attending the meeting, please RSVP to rsvp@portlandtransport.com.

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RUN, the Rail Users’ Network, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the improvement of passenger rail service and rail transit. Our primary concern is expansion and improved management of local transit, including commuter rail, heavy rail, light rail and heritage streetcars. We are also concerned with the quality of travel on intercity trains operated by Amtrak and VIA Rail, and connectivity between intercity trains and local rail transit.

Our members are experienced rail advocates from around the nation. Many of us are active with state and local rail advocacy coalitions and transit-appointed advisory committees. We come from all walks of life, including law, engineering, business and rail management. We publish the RUN Newsletter quarterly, hold meetings in New York and around the country and sponsor conferences focusing on improved advocacy for better rail and transit service.

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