You could call it The Little Engine that Could. A new report has named the Staples Mill train station the busiest station in all of Virginia. Even though it's a quaint location compared to others, it's turning out massive ticket sales.
17-year-old Reagan Martin is preparing to be a college student. She's traveling from Texas to check out William and Mary.
"I thought it was going to take forever," she admitted about the train ride.
But to her surprise...
"It's actually a lot of fun and it's really comfortable seats," she said.
Martin is one of a growing number of people, according to Amtrak, making travel by rail their travel of choice. The company is profiting from a record 31.2 million passengers this year.
"I take a train whenever I can," said passenger Will Arthur.
Turns out, the Staples Mill Road station in Henrico tops the list of ridership out of every other train station in Virginia, with nearly 346,000 boardings and departures.
"It means more business," says Mike Khodr who operates an independent snack shop inside the Amtrak building.
"Since they have the 7:00 train, which they started a year and a half ago, we have an extra 100 people in the morning getting on the train," Khodr said.
Amtrak officials can't pinpoint why this station surpasses the rest of the state. It could be location.
"We have a lot of people in Richmond that want to go to Washington and they commute every morning," Khodr said.
It may also be the value.
"It's cheaper than the airplane, it's actually cheaper than the bus and it's more room," Arthur said.
Whatever it is, something keeps them coming back to a little station making a huge impact.
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