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Amtrak's early years are often called the Rainbow Era which refers to the ad hoc arrangement of the rolling stock and locomotives from a pool of equipment acquired by Amtrak at its formation, that consisted of a large mix of paint schemes from their former owners.This rolling stock, which for the most part still bore the pre-Amtrak colors and logos, formed the multi-colored consists of early Amtrak trains., is a passenger railroad service that provides medium- and long-distance intercity service in the contiguous United States.Founded in 1971 to take over most of the remaining U. passenger rail services, it is partially government funded yet operated and managed as a for-profit corporation.Railroads also faced antiquated work rules and inflexible relationships with trade unions.

On the other hand, the creation of the Los Angeles–Seattle Coast Starlight from three formerly separate trains was an immediate success.On the day it started, Amtrak was given the responsibility of rerouting passenger trains from the seven train terminals in Chicago (La Salle, Dearborn, Grand Central, Randolph, Chicago Northwestern Terminal, Central, and Union) into just one, Union Station.In New York City, Amtrak had to pay to maintain both Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal because of the lack of track connections to bring trains from upstate New York into Penn Station, a problem not rectified until the building of the Empire Connection in 1991.All Amtrak's routes were continuations of prior service, although Amtrak pruned about half the passenger rail network.Of the 364 trains operated previously, Amtrak only continued 182.