Jun. 26—Just three months after reopening the Adirondack train line from New York City to Montreal, Amtrak is suspending the service's north country stops, terminating the line in Albany.
In an announcement Monday from the U.S. national passenger rail company, Amtrak said the Canadian National rail carrier has implemented reduced speed regulations around Montreal due to heat and warping rails, and their trains numbered 68 and 69 will not be able to travel in the country until further notice.
The Adirondack Line is the only passenger rail line to visit the north country stops north of the Fort Edward/Glens Falls station to Plattsburgh, and those stations will not see any train service until the Adirondack Line returns to Montreal. The line has been canceled effective immediately, with Monday's trains the final to run north of Albany.
The line was entirely canceled for about three years during the COVID-19 pandemic, even after cross-border traffic resumed unimpeded in 2022. North country legislators including Rep. Elise M. Stefanik, R-Willsboro and Assemblyman D. Billy Jones, D-Chateaugay Lake, advocated strongly for Amtrak to resume the service and lauded the company's decision to restart service on April 3 this year.
Stefanik said in an emailed statement that she is working to see the closure reversed.
"After we worked to hard to reopen the Adirondack line this year, this news is absolutely unacceptable," she said. "My office is working with Amtrak, local and state elected officials, as well as the North Country Chamber of Commerce to ensure that Canadian National Railroad leadership provides a written plan to reopen the line immediately."
In a statement sent shortly after the announcement of the service suspension, Jones said he felt this was a major step backward for cross-border travel.
"We were just getting back to normalcy at our borders and now it feels like we are moving backwards," he said. "This rail line is not just important for cross border traffic, but for locals as well, especially the many college students who utilize their services throughout the academic year."
Jones said he will continue to work with local, state and federal leadership on a way to bring the Adirondack line back to northern New York.
Monday's closure of the Adirondack Line came just hours before officials including Amtrak leadership announced they had come to an agreement on a united plan for a reconstruction of the aging Penn Station in midtown Manhattan, the starting and ending point for the Adirondack Line and the busiest transportation terminal for any mode in the Western Hemisphere. Officials pledged to turn the station into a "world-class" commuter and intercity hub station.
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