Train Service Announced from Corning to New York City!



(While this was originally posted as an April Fool’s Day story, we are actively working with members of the community – including our local representative of the Empire State Passenger Association – to explore the possibility of restoring passenger rail service to the Southern Tier)

Corning-ites rejoice.  An endless bounty of all things Gotham is about to become much more easily accessible.  Amtrak announced today that rail service between the Crystal and New York Cities is in the works.

When asked what took so long, an official from the quasi-government railroad service responded, “For the longest time we assumed there was simply no demand.  I mean, it seemed like everybody and their brother already had a connection to hop the Corning Inc. shuttle.  Then we had that derailment last winter.  When 37 people tried to board the train – thinking it was stopped to take on passengers – we knew we were onto something.”

Last year’s derailment was bad for one engineer… but good for the rest of us

UC_derailedA single train will make the loop thrice per week from the onset, but daily round-trips are a distinct possibility if demand is strong.  The non-stop runs will depart early from Centerway Square and arrive at Penn Station mid-morning – making return trips late evening.  Overnight and between voyages, the dormant train will remain parked in Corning – allowing area high school students to use sides of the passenger cars as canvasses for their next  Alley Art Project mural.  Representatives from that initiative hope to foster collaboration with urban graffiti artists – passing the works in progress back and forth in what they’re calling a, “tag-train-team-tagging” approach.

The pickup and drop-off stop adjoining Centerway Square is perfectly positioned to allow easy access to Corning’s Gaffer District – and will encourage passengers to take advantage of the garage for park & ride commuting.  Under consideration are options to build a ticket booth into the base of the clocktower, or to handle such transactions via the M&T Bank drive-thru.  Since trains will be in such close proximity to Centennial Park, the option exists to temporarily re-aim the park’s fountain stream for filling boilers – meaning historic steam locomotives may be brought into service without needing to erect an unsightly water tower (also sparing the community from a favorite hiding place for bandits).

“You bet we will.” -Amtrak re: beverage stocks aboard the train

Embracing the “shop local” ethos, the train’s bar car will be fully stocked with finger lakes wines and local brews & spirits – providing not only familiar refreshment options for locals traveling down, but a tasteful introduction to our area for downstate visitors on their way up.

Finally, anyone interested in booking transit for the maiden voyage should consult today’s date and then join us at Urban Corning in a collective, “All aboard!”

Ed. Note: No one would love for this to be true more than us.  In all seriousness, we wonder what it would take to actually make some semblance of this a reality…?

Dave Rochelle
Dave owns Rochelle Media Works and is a partner at CreAgent Marketing in Corning, NY
Dave Rochelle
Dave Rochelle

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48 thoughts on “Train Service Announced from Corning to New York City!

  1. This is just mean. I would have loved to be able come home on the weekends this easily without being stuffed on a smelly bus.

  2. The Erie Lackawanna provided passenger service for some decades between Hoboken, NJ and Buffalo that passed through Corning. No April Fool.

    1. Cool info, John… and love the historical map you posted on our Facebook page. We understand there is at least one group working towards restoring passenger rail service between Buffalo, Corning, and NYC…. we’re keeping our fingers crossed!

  3. Sure wish the amtrack would have a stop in Corning from other places like Florida. I’d be a customer. But I’m glad for people who can use it

  4. This is not nice, or funny at all…April Fool’s Day or not, why pointlessly get people’s hopes up ?!

    1. We hope it’s not pointless, Kenneth. In fact, we’re hoping to stimulate the discussion about how something like this could actually come to fruition. There certainly seem to be enough people interested in making this a reality… who knows what might happen?

  5. Sadly not true (yes you know what day it is). But it is something we really need. Just yesterday I was asked by a friend to arrange a trip for another person from NYC to Elmira….unfortunately can’t do it. Gotta got to Syracuse…. For those that would like to seriously see this happen PLEASE write your elected officials! They need to hear from everyone about this. Also this service is part of the National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP) and the Empire State Passengers Association. Anyone that would like more info please contact me at

    1. As I state below, I’m TOTALLY up to the task of setting this in motion! What can I do to help?! Somehow “writing a letter to our elected official” just doesn’t seem like enough. Nor does it seem like a strong enough approach!
      Come on Corningites!!!! Let’s get together and MAKE this happen!!!

  6. April fools?? That idea is no laughing matter if rail service could be established between Corning and Elmira and nyc it could open a lot of doors for people who can not drive it could bring jobs and ease of transportation to many I fully support this idea cause it would bring hope and light to dying areas. The bus system is totally unpopular and as one person said before in another statement the buses are cramped and do smell. This needs to built for everyone

  7. Would love to see this!! I would use it to visit NYC…have family there…if it wasn’t April 1st I would be really excited!! Oh well…..back to reality.

  8. I have a good sense of humor, but this was not funny, it was mean! Seriously, just really mean to get people excited to just let them down…

  9. Okay, so this is CLEARLY something we ALL want. What steps do we need to take to see something like this come to fruition?!?! I’m up to helping, are all of you?!!!!

  10. Really?! WOW…Oh April fools…So sad. How wonderful that would be to have that option,Adding on visiting NYC after vacationing in Corning, I know a lot of people take buses, and think about the opportunity to get to NYC for shows, shopping or even for direct flights to other locations.I hope to be around to see this idea become a reality !

  11. I was believing this until I started reading the comments lol This would have been awesome though 🙂 I would have used it!! Maybe we could getting something like this one day!!

  12. There used to be train service from Corning to New York City— My Aunt took me there on the train from Corning in 1967–It would be great if it could happen again

    1. OK, this subject has a lot of people interested in seeing passenger service restored. So here’s the first step in our mission – First step – everyone needs to contact our elected officials via phone or e-mail. If they receive a lot of comments on one subject it gets their attention that the topic is important. mention if you want that there was the article above and that it would be a major benefit to this area if it were indeed true someday. The contact information is provided below. Anyone interested in getting a a committee going here to push further for this let me know.

      Senator Charles Schumer
      Phone: (202) 224-6542 (DC) Phone: (212) 486-4430 (NYC)

      Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
      Phone (212) 481 2010

      Congressman Tom Reed
      Phone: (202) 225-3161

      1. I would be willing to do a presentation of sorts on this subject to folks in Corning sometime soon. Just need a time and a location. I’m actually off to DC next weekend for the National Association of Railroad passengers meeting that will include a stop on Capitol Hill and a possible meeting with our representatives. I was going to show them some of the positive comments on your site that reinforces this idea.

        1. I’m VERY interested in being involved!!! I say lets form a committee and start badgering our officials to make this happen! SO, when can we start?!?!?!
          Please msg me back on here with an email for me to send my info to. Or you may email me at However, I warn you that I NEVER check my email unless I know something worthwhile has been sent to check for. So, SHOULD you email me, PLEASE msg me on here with a heads up.
          I’m VERY excited to get the ball rolling and see us make this happen in our lifetimes!!!!

  13. One last thing….woudn’t it be absolutely AMAZING and wonderful if this “April Fool’s article, written by you Mr. Rochelle, ACTUALLY brought this to fruition?!?! How positively MARVELOUS!!!!!

    1. I think the good far out ways the bad. And honestly, if a drug dealer wants to come here, or go there, they WILL find a way, whether it’s by train, or some other method. So, unless we plan to stop all flights, buses, cars, horses, etc., someone who is determined to do bad, is going to find a way, one way or the other. A train isn’t going to effect that. Furthermore, as I first stated, all the GOOD it could bring to this town would benefit us all. More tourism, EASIER transportation for people visiting NYC to come up here on the train, means more money spent in our town. Which means more money businesses can invest in our town, which then disperses to local needs; i.e.: little league, parks, maintenance of roads, etc. Not to mention the tourists who will drive in from a few hours away, to catch the train leaving from here. Maybe they will stay in a B ‘n’ B, spend some time and money in our town, then hop on the train for a visit to NYC. When they return from NYC, maybe they’ll spend another night, or two, here, maybe visiting the Finger Lakes, etc. Who knows?! But I think the “traffic” it could potentially create would be a huge benefit to our local economy as well as social activities and events! I truly believe that, in this case, the benefit far out ways the impediment.

  14. I just posted this on my fb asking for people to get involved. I asked them to read the article and all the comments at the bottom. Hopefully, this will bring about even more interest in seeing this done!
    Here’s hoping to a flourish of more comments, leading to a full committee!!!! We CAN make this happen!!! We’re Corning-ites after all!!!! ???? Cheers!

  15. As far as the train bringing in the riff raff, not really. I’ve taken both the train and the bus and the bus was full of far more shady characters than the train ever did. Not saying that no one of bad intent would use it, but trains usually attract a higher class of people. Trust me, I’ve seen the proof. And since many arrive by car, and the idea of stopping THAT mode of transportation is not likely.

  16. For those interested, the next meeting of the Empire State Passengers Association is on April 23rd in Schenectady, NY. I am planning to attend and the meeting is open to all. If we can get something initially in order before then we can present a preliminary idea to the group to get support. I usually drive to Syracuse and take Amtrak to Schenectady and back. If there is interest in attending, we can get a group together and I can arrange for us to travel to Syracuse and take the train to the the meeting. This will help familiarize people with a similar service arrangement. It’s a nice way to spend a Saturday….

    1. Glad you’re part of this conversation, Rob. It sounds like you’ve got a lot of valuable knowledge & insight about the situation… and we applaud your willingness to help others get involved!

  17. I believe this would be the greatest thing corning could do it would be a win win I hope corning glass steps up and maybe get corning on the map start with weekend trips then see one step at a time .They say they want business to move to new york tax free well I believe that this should be on of them they should make happen. Herman smith

  18. I am extremely disappointed that this isn’t true. I’m from Ithaca, and got really excited that I wouldn’t have to ride the slow, smelly bus all the way down to NYC. I absolutely HATE April fools day.

    1. Just to update things, I’m headed to DC for a meeting of the National Association of Railroad Passengers. As part of the meeting we’re going to Capitol Hill to meet with (most likely the staff of) our elected officials. I have put together a packet of information on our discussions here about getting passenger service to Corning that includes this article and all of the comments both here and on Facebook that will be left with them to review. Dave and I are putting together a presentation on this and once we schedule a date we will let everyone know. Any questions please let me know. Stay tuned!

  19. This would be such a great service. I have family, friends and co workers who routinely travel to NYC couple times per month. Not to mention all the college students in the area. It would be much easier to recruit professionals if they still had options for cultural experiences. This is the main complaint from our short term professionals that ultimately leave.

  20. Does anyone realize all this means is that drugs can be shipped from NYC to all of upstate without any police interruption!

  21. I would so do this. No Joke! I would love to be able to take train trip anywhere, especially NYC! I don’t ever want to drive there. I would go multiple times a year. On my own even. Now, the only time I go to NYC is if friends are going. I’ve been there twice in the last 14 years. I’d pay double what it costs to drive there for the privilege of taking a train. The scenery alone would be worth it. Bring back the Phoebe Snow! 🙂

    1. I am a high end glass collector in Australia, desperate to visit the Corning Glass Museum when I come to NYC. It is just so hard to do. Driving is out as you drive on the wrong side of the road in the USA {joke}. I mix with other serious glass collectors and they feel the same way.
      The Museum is world famous and is losing out with the tourist trade.

  22. I really hope this does come true. As getting older, not as fond of dtiving as once was. This would be awesome to go visit my in-laws and going on tours and holiday tours of NYC.

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