Amtrak-MTA partnership continues to deliver passenger benefits
WASHINGTON – Amtrak, in partnership with the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA), has completed a project to expand and improve the public address and electronic passenger information display systems (PIDS) at Washington Union Station. The $2.2 million project was primarily funded under the MTA-Amtrak Joint Benefit Program.
For the public address system, more than 290 speakers and 44 LED signs were installed on the station platforms used by Amtrak, MARC and VRE trains. The PIDS are ADA-compliant, installed in the station and on the platforms, and communicate real-time train status, boarding and station announcements, and safety and security messages in both audible and visual formats.
Other passenger benefit improvements in recent years at Washington Union Station include installation of the train information board in the Main Hall which was jointly funded by Amtrak and MTA. Also, Amtrak installed ADA-compliant audio inductive loop technology at designated ticket counters and at the customer service desk to enhance the travel experience for passengers with hearing loss and to improve communication with Amtrak customer service representatives.
Washington Union Station is a bustling retail and multi-modal facility that serves more than 32 million visitors annually, and station partners continue to focus on improving the passenger experience. The Washington Union Station Master Plan sets forth a new vision to revitalize the historic station through a multi-phased approach, to gain increased passenger and rail capacity, add new station amenities and transit-oriented mixed-use development above the tracks. While work continues to advance the plan, early action items focus on improving the rail passenger waiting areas and expanding the existing concourse to improve pedestrian traffic flow.
Amtrak is America’s Railroad®, the nation’s intercity passenger rail service and its high-speed rail operator. Amtrak and its state and commuter partners move people, the economy and the nation forward. Formally known as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, Amtrak is governed by a nine member board of directors appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Anthony R. Coscia is board chairman and Jeffrey R. Moreland is vice chairman. In FY 2014, nearly 31 million passengers traveled on Amtrak on more than 300 daily trains – at speeds up to 150 mph (241 kph) – that connect 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian Provinces. Enjoy the journey® at Amtrak.com or call 800-USA-RAIL for schedules, fares and more information. Like us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter (@Amtrak) and check out our blog at blog.amtrak.com.
The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is a division of the Maryland Department of Transportation, and one of the largest multi-modal transit systems in the United States. MTA operates Local and Commuter Buses, Light Rail, Metro Subway, Maryland Area Regional Commuter (MARC) Train Service, and a comprehensive Paratransit (Mobility) system. MTA also manages the Taxi Access system, and directs funding and statewide assistance to Locally Operated Transit Systems (LOTS) in each of Maryland’s 23 counties, Baltimore City, Annapolis and Ocean City. For the latest information on MTA service, passengers are urged to check the MTA website at www.mta.maryland.gov. Customers can also call the MTA Transit Information Contact Center Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 410-539-5000. TTY 410-539-3497. To sign-up for email about service modifications and delays, go to www.mta.maryland.gov/enotifications. Visit MTA’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/mtamaryland or Twitter feed at http://twitter.com/mtamaryland for more sources of updated information.