RTA board approves new Music City Star schedule

The new Music City Star schedule modification allows for better connectivity in afternoons. (photo courtesy of MTA/RTA)

The Regional Transportation Authority of Middle Tennessee Board of Directors has voted to approve the new Music City Star service schedule, which is a product of customer feedback and will improve on-time performance in coordination with afternoon bus service that connects to Riverfront Station for train riders.

After closing the 30-day public comment period earlier in November on three potential scenarios for commuter train service, RTA staff made its recommendation to the board of directors.

This recommendation was in line with customer feedback, which was to leave the train schedule consistent with the existing service schedule, with additional modifications made to improve timing for the 93 Music City Star West End shuttle to reliably deliver passengers to Riverfront Station for their afternoon commutes, in light of increasing congestion between the West End corridor and downtown Nashville.

As previously annou-nced, in order to have the least impact on passengers and the train’s growing commuter ridership while adhering to changes in operating requirements by the Federal Railroad Administration, the RTA is no longer able to operate the Music City Star’s Friday evening train beginning in 2019. The last Friday night train will run on December 28, 2018.

In addition to making adjustments to the train’s current schedule, RTA staff will conduct a rail improvements study to identify opportunities to update Music City Star equipment, vehicles, and tracks, as well as optimizing the schedule further for improved reliability to meet customers’ growing needs and a possible later extension of the rail’s service area.