Carolinas Association for Passenger Trains
General Membership Meeting
Chapin Memorial Library, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
October 9, 2010 Open - 2 P.M.
Present: Martin Wheeler, Jr., Jim Frierson, Gene Kirkland, Bob Bischoff, Ed Locklin, & David Hill.

The meeting opened with discussion about getting out the meeting notice earlier to members wishing to attend. Gene Kirkland asked us to send him information about details concerning the next meeting before the 15th of the month prior to the next meeting so he has time to get out the meeting notices.

The next order of business was the election of officers and directors for the coming year. The results are as follows:

Ed Locklin
Bob Bischoff
*David Hill

The vote was unanimous. All other directors are in their 2nd year of their 2 year terms.
* David Hill is a newly elected director from Greenville, S.C.

Martin Wheeler, Jr. President
Art Peterson, N.C. Vice-President
Jim Frierson, S.C. Vice-President
Phil Astwood, Secretary
Gene Kirkland, Treasurer

Martin Wheeler talked about various scenarios for new passenger rail service in S.C., such as a Charlotte/Columbia/Charleston train. These trains would connect with N.C. service, but would not run through.

Gene has been working on the new CAPT brochure. He reported he might have something to show us at the next meeting after he saw the printer in Fayetteville. He said he hoped to get out the CAPT newsletter by the end of October.

Jim Frierson said SCDOT is doing a study of Florence to Myrtle Beach and Florence to Charleston service. Jim said Charleston is seriously considering a commuter rail service for their area. Charleston is looking for funding to relocate their Amtrak station, he reported.

October 23rd is the date of the annual Lexington (N.C.) Barbecue. Martin said all Amtrak trains will be making an unscheduled stop in Lexington on that day to accommodate passengers wishing to attend.

Martin reported NCDOT has submitted an application for a 5th frequency Charlotte to Raleigh passenger train.

Martin said NCDOT is planning to construct a new Greyhound bus station between 3rd and 4th streets in Charlotte, next to the new station. The new Gateway Multi-modal terminal will host not only Amtrak but also some CATS local bus service, as well as the planned Red Line commuter rail service to the Lake Norman area. NCDOT has signed a contract with Kimberly-Horn & Associates for a public transportation access study, to see how all this works together.

Martin said rail grinding was being performed on the light rail to smooth the ride. While this is being done there will be some single track operation with minor delays. Light rail ridership in August 2010 vs. 2009 increased 1.4 per cent. It was down 6 per cent on the bus system. CATS has applied for a federal grant to extend light rail from 7th St. up to 9th St., where it would serve the new UNCC college of business. It would feature a tail track up to near 12th St., capable of handling several trains laying over.

Jim said Rock Hill plans a new bus service that would connect with the light rail at the I-485 station and serve Ft. Mill, on its way to Rock Hill.

Bob Bischoff reported that CATS is considering a money-saving change in the design of the streetcar stops in the center of Trade St. Instead of the planned open two-sided platform shelter located between the tracks CATS wants to put their standard side-of-the-street shelter with its back wall in the street center. In an attempt to minimize the ugliness of this they plan to off-set the shelters, rather than have them back to back. In other streetcar news he reported CATS seems to have now rejected for the present any thought of using under the street or battery powered technology to power streetcars in favor of standard overhead wire operation.

Martin said the IRS has a new requirement that all 501c3 organizations must fill out an annual report. This does not require any payment on our part.

New CAPT director David Hill said he will be attending the NARP national convention to be held in Grand Rapids, Michigan this month.

Next Meetings
Dec. Raleigh, NC -Allan Paul of NCDOT-Rail will be our guest speaker
Feb. 2011 Greensboro, NC

Bob Bischoff
Acting Secretary