This 2017 photo shows passengers lounging in the observation car of Amtrak’s Coast Starlight on the way from Los Angeles to Seattle. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt, file)

This 2017 photo shows passengers lounging in the observation car of Amtrak’s Coast Starlight on the way from Los Angeles to Seattle. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt, file)

Amtrak resumes routes, including Everett Empire Builder stop

Increased routes will include trips between Seattle and Chicago, Los Angeles, Portland and Eugene.

Associated Press

SEATTLE — In another hopeful sign that the travel industry is bouncing back in Washington state after pandemic-induced lows last year, Amtrak says it will restore daily service on 12 long distance routes across the country, including two that run through Seattle.

Starting Monday, both the Empire Builder — Chicago to Seattle/Portland, with daily stops in Everett — and the Coast Starlight — Seattle to Los Angeles — routes will resume daily service, giving passengers on the West Coast more travel options.

The routes had previously only been operating three times a week due to low ridership during the pandemic.

The Amtrak Cascades route will also add a second round trip between Seattle and Eugene starting Monday and a third round trip on the Seattle to Portland segment will also be added.

Trips to British Columbia on the Cascade line have not been restored due to the ongoing border closure. Following COVID-19 health protocols set by the state as part of its reopening plan, capacity for train cars has been set to 50%.

The service restoration will also bring back 1,200 furloughed employees.

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