Station and onboard upgrades increase mobility and connectivity for customers
WASHINGTON – Amtrak has invested $770 million since 2011 in station accessibility upgrades and improvement projects across the national network to ensure a safe, efficient, and comfortable travel experience for customers with disabilities. The improvements include repairs and upgrades to platforms, ramps and sidewalks, renovations to entranceways and restrooms, and Amtrak is working toward 100% completion by 2029.
More accessibility improvements projects are underway on existing and new fleets as well as on how customers book tickets and navigate digital channels.
“These investments benefit all of our customers by improving the travel experience at every aspect of the journey from trip planning, to purchasing tickets, to using our stations, trains and services,” Amtrak President Roger Harris said. “The execution of work depends on the strong collaboration and shared commitment from the community, the Department of Transportation, local governments, freight railroads and other partners.”
Amtrak is advancing projects in the following areas:
- Bringing stations elements including parking, station building and platforms into compliance through a comprehensive multi-year, multi-billion dollar design and construction program providing an accessible and compliant passenger experience. To date we have brought 117 stations into compliance and another 67 stations have been made accessible.
- Designing and deploying assistive boarding equipment, including bridge plates, to help customers with reduced mobility board and depart from the train.
- Displaying audio and visual train status and boarding information through passenger information display systems at stations.
- New Acela and Amtrak Airo trains will offer a public address customer information system to provide real-time information such as train location, train speed, and conductor announcements in audio and visual formats.
- Amtrak Airo and new Acela trains will feature spacious and accessible restrooms, vestibules, and Café Cars with integrated boarding equipment for customers with reduced mobility.
- Accessibility improvements across all fleets include adding handrails to Superliner accessible bedrooms, stair handrails, folding tray tables at accessible seating areas, slip-resistant vestibule flooring, and compliant service counters in Café Cars.
The Amtrak Americans with Disabilities Act Stations Program oversees accessibility-related station improvement projects to ensure customers with disabilities can successfully navigate the rail network. The program has identified another 39 stations for completion this fiscal year at a forecasted investment of $140 million.
“As author of the All Stations Accessibility Program (ASAP) Act, a historic bill that was included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, I’m proud that Amtrak is showing its commitment to making passenger rail accessible for everyone, all while creating jobs and bringing investment to Illinois,” said U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL). “Today’s announcement gets us closer to a nation where Americans of all ability statuses can safely and confidently enjoy public transit.”
With $1.2 billion in investments from the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA), Amtrak will continue advancing a comprehensive improvement program to ensure a safe, efficient and comfortable travel experience with a focus on accessibility and inclusion.
For more than 50 years, Amtrak has connected America and modernized train travel. Offering a safe, environmentally efficient way to reach more than 500 destinations across 46 states and parts of Canada, Amtrak provides travelers with an experience that sets a new standard. Book travel, check train status, access your eTicket and more through the Amtrak app. Learn more at Amtrak.com and connect with us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.