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Changes to Music City Star schedule proposed by RTA; public meetings scheduled

Music City Star Cutting Friday Night Service Music City Star Cutting Friday Night Service

The potential changes were based on customer feedback and from a Music City Star service survey relative to operational regulations, Regional Transportation Authority of Middle Tennessee spokeswoman Amanda Clelland said.

"We heard from a lot of passengers that they would like for the morning trains to arrive earlier and the afternoon trains to depart later to better accommodate their work schedules," Clelland said.

Three community meetings are scheduled in Donelson, Mt. Juliet and Lebanon that will provide information and gather feedback along with comments being accepted online, by phone and email through Oct. 15.

The RTA staff will present findings from the public comment period on Nov. 14, Clelland said. The effective date of the schedule approved is to be determined, but will be no later than Dec. 31.

Friday night train to stop

The RTA's Friday night round-trip train will be discontinued regardless of any of the schedule options ultimately approved.

Friday night ridership has declined and has averaged about 70 riders per trip in recent months compared with 180 riders per trip for daily weekday runs. 

The Friday train also will also put the Music City Star over the maximum 12 daily trips allowed to qualify for an exemption to a new Positive Train Control technology required by the federal government after this year.

The RTA will instead invest in the repair and replacement of the locomotives and rail cars and improve tracks, Clelland said.

The board will determine the final date of the Friday night train, which will be no later than the end of the year.

Community meeting schedule

Donelson: 4:30-6:30 p.m. Sept, 27, FiftyForward Donelson conference room, 108 Donelson Pike.

Lebanon: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Oct. 4, Lebanon City Hall, 200 N. Castle Heights Ave.

Mt. Juliet: 4:30-7 p.m. Oct. 2, Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce, 2055 N. Mt Juliet Road.

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