Miami and city of Oxford entice Amtrak with $350,000 commitments


Amtrak's Cardinal Line, from New York to Chicago, runs through southwest Ohio.

Miami University confirmed its commitment Jan. 4 to partner with the city of Oxford in trying to attract an Amtrak train stop in Oxford.

The university agreed several months ago to collaborate with the city of Oxford to try to persuade Amtrak to establish a passenger train stop in Oxford. Miami formalized the commitment on Wednesday in writing with a pledge of $350,000 to match Oxford’s $350,000 commitment if a train stop is established.

Amtrak has not decided if it will create a stop in Oxford.

With Miami drawing many students every year from across the country, such a transportation option would benefit prospective and current students, parents and alumni. Miami and Oxford have discussed the possibility of an Amtrak stop in Oxford for the last couple of years.

Miami’s financial commitment specifies development of an Amtrak stop at Chestnut Fields, Miami’s parking lot and facilities at the site of the former Talawanda High School on Chestnut Street. “The funds will be made available to the project upon execution of a final memorandum of understanding between the city of Oxford and the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak),” said David Creamer, Miami’s senior vice president for finance and business services, in a letter to Oxford Mayor Kate Rousmaniere.

A committee of city and university members learned minimum construction estimates start at $1 million to $1.3 million for a 300-foot train platform, an open-air canopy or shelter and access sidewalks.

Amtrak’s Cardinal Line, which runs from New York to Chicago, comes through Oxford in the early morning hours on Monday, Thursday and Saturday before heading to Chicago, and on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday before heading to New York.