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May 3, 2024

PHOTO/VIDEO: Amtrak Executive Laura Mason Tours Harrisburg Track Renewal Project

Work is ahead of schedule as the team moves east along the railroad, from Harrisburg to Lancaster

Amtrak Executive Vice President of Capital Delivery Laura Mason and Vice President of Infrastructure Maintenance & Construction Services Lee Moss were in Middletown, PA on Wednesday to check out progress on the Harrisburg Line Track Renewal Project.

This critical infrastructure investment project is replacing obsolete 1950s-era rail infrastructure at the end of its useful life, which when completed will improve ride quality and comfort, increase service reliability and complete necessary work required to keep the tracks in a state of good repair.

The project is ahead of schedule and transitioned to Phase 2 Monday, April 29, which included minor additional service adjustments.

As of Wednesday, May 1, crews have:

  • Installed more than 23,720 concrete ties
  • Installed more than 9 miles of rail
  • Undercut more than 5 track miles of roadbed

We’re taking a fresh approach and expediting this important project with a combination of single and full track outages that will improve work efficiencies and reduce the duration of customer impacts. As a result, this work is scheduled for completion in nearly half the original estimated timeline of two years.

To extend the long-term benefits of the project, the existing wood ties are being replaced with concrete ties, which have an expected lifespan of 60 years vs. 25 years for traditional wood ties.

Here are some photos and video of the work, including:

  • The “Track Laying Machine (TLM),” which removes old wood ties from under the tracks and replaces them with new, concrete ties.
  • An “undercutter,” which removes and cleans old ballast from under the track structure and recycles some of the ballast. Later in the project, fresh stone is dropped before the track is brought to final alignment.

For More Information

Amtrak Contact
Amtrak Contact
202 906.3860

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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 and connect with us on X, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.

About Amtrak’s Historic Infrastructure Investments

Amtrak is leading a new era of passenger rail, investing in modern trains, enhanced stations, new tunnels and bridges, and other critical infrastructure upgrades. We’re enhancing the customer experience across the country, improving safety and reliability, driving economic development, reducing trip times, expanding capacity, advancing accessibility and promoting a more sustainable future.

Traditionally known as a passenger rail operator, today Amtrak is also a major construction company executing the largest capital program in Amtrak’s history. With over $50 billion of capital investments in planning and development, these historic investments are made possible by the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA), also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) enacted in 2021.