In August Frank reported that “by the end of the year” the Pt. Defiance Bypass would open to Cascades trains, shaving 10 minutes off the trip to Portland and allowing a 13% increase in on-time arrivals. WSDOT is also using this occasion to deploy its new locomotives on two daily round trips to Portland. Now we have a date: WSDOT announced that service on the bypass would begin on December 18th.
The changes were funded by the Obama-era stimulus. There will be minor adjustments to the Eugene-Portland schedule to better accommodate through trips.
Now riders have more options for holiday trips to Portland. You can find the full timetable here.