Missouri Amtrak ridership is up 75% from 2003 to 2014, making it the 11th fastest growing state for Amtrak ridership over that time frame. Let’s look at some of the underlying trends the state is experiencing.
Missouri has 12 Amtrak stations, most served by the Missouri River Runner, which offers twice-daily service in each direction along the the east-west spine of the state between St. Louis and Kansas City. A few stations in Missouri also have service on three other routes: Lincoln Service, Southwest Chief and Texas Eagle. The busiest station in the state is St. Louis, which has service on the Missouri River Runner, Lincoln Service, and Texas Eagle. Next is Kansas City, with service on the Missouri River Runner and Southwest Chief. This line chart shows all the stations in the state by ridership.
Thanks in part to service increases in Illinois, St. Louis ridership has surged 138% since 2003, to 350,866 passenger in 2014. But little Poplar Bluff, the southernmost and quietest station in the state, is actually Missouri’s fastest growing station. Ridership there grew 168%, from 2,246 passengers in 2003 to 6,017 in 2014. Rounding out the next few, Hermann grew 97%, Warrensburg grew 90%, La Plata, the station in the northern corner of the state with service on the Southwest Chief, grew 71%, Independence grew 60%, and Kansas City grew 41%. Every station in the state recorded ridership growth, with Kirkwood being the slowest growing at 23%. This stacked column chart shows another view of this picture.
Now let’s take a look at the pie chart below, which shows the relative importance of St. Louis and Kansas City to the state’s ridership picture. As of 2014, the two stations account for 69% of the state’s ridership.
Finally, let’s take a look at passenger volumes on the Missouri River Runner, formerly known as the Ann Rutledge, Kansas City Mule and St. Louis Mule. Average monthly ridership on this route is up 33% from December 2003 to April 2015.