Today, federal, state and local leaders highlighted the 150th anniversary of the Baltimore and Potomac (B&P) tunnel’s groundbreaking and unveiled new plans to enhance and advance the B&P Tunnel Replacement Program. Additionally, Amtrak announced the new tunnel will be named after Frederick Douglass, the late Maryland-born and world-renowned abolitionist leader.
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Based on our initial review, the INVEST in America Act is a bold commitment to a stronger Amtrak and more sustainable transportation system that America needs. The bill authorizes the robust funding necessary to allow Amtrak to better serve the country. It provides additional funding to help advance the recently released Amtrak Connects US vision to bring more trains to new customers and underserved communities, and address Amtrak’s aging bridges, tunnels, and fleet. In addition, the bill would help Amtrak enforce its statutory right to preference so that passengers arrive on time and ensure fair and expeditious access to rail lines to expand service.
If enacted, these provisions will strengthen Amtrak to deliver the 21st century intercity passenger rail network that America needs. We thank the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure for their commitment to Amtrak and look forward to working with all of Congress and our partners to bring more sustainable and equitable rail service to communities throughout the nation.
As currently proposed, the acquisition of Pan Am by CSX represents a significant threat to the American traveling public which relies on Amtrak and our state partners to deliver frequent, reliable and sustainable intercity passenger rail service. Unfortunately, we believe the proposed merger, in its proposed form, will negatively impact current passenger train service and future routes in Massachusetts and Northern New England that are identified in the Amtrak Corridor Vision. Our goal, as outlined in the vision, to provide new rail service to over 160 more communities and 20 million more passengers annually by 2035 aligns with the Biden administration’s infrastructure investment blueprint and any merger’s impacts on this goal should be considered by the Surface Transportation Board during its review.
Amtrak’s primary considerations – as it would be with any railroad acquisition – are simple. First, Amtrak wants to ensure on-time performance of Amtrak trains over any impacted routes. Second, we want to ensure we will have a good partner in seeking to improve and expand existing state-supported and long distance services as well as planned expansions to new routes. After reviewing the CSX application, it is clear that the proposed merger, in its current form, will adversely impact the performance of Amtrak trains and threaten future growth opportunities. As the STB evaluates the proposed Pan Am-CSX merger, we urge the Board to recognize that intercity passenger transportation is a critical factor in maintaining and growing rail connections between communities, economic growth, social equity and sustainability.
NEWARK – The Gateway Development Commission hailed the long-awaited release today of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) on the Hudson Tunnel Project.
Completion of the FEIS and issuance of a ROD by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is a major milestone for the project. With a Record of Decision in hand, real estate property acquisition, advanced engineering design, utility relocation and other pre-construction activities can move forward, bringing the project a significant step closer to major construction.
WASHINGTON – Amtrak is initiating the work to deliver by 2035 more frequent, reliable and sustainable intercity passenger rail service to over 160 more communities and 20 million more passengers annually, as outlined in the Amtrak Corridor Vision released today. To be implemented in collaboration with states, local communities, the administration and many other stakeholders, the Corridor Vision builds upon Amtrak’s national network, integrating new and improved corridors to expand the existing system.
WASHINGTON – Amtrak released its FY20 Sustainability Report that showcases sustainability projects across Amtrak’s regions and operations. Throughout the report are details of Amtrak’s measured progress against annual and long-term sustainability goals.
NEW YORK – Amtrak customers now have access to complimentary premium food and beverage products in the Metropolitan Lounge at the Moynihan Train Hall in New York City in compliance with local safety guidelines.
Amtrak is transforming Northeast Corridor train travel by enhancing the customer experience, both in stations and on board trains. As part of this effort, Amtrak is currently accepting Letters of Interest from interested contractors until Feb. 15, 2021, for construction associated work at New Carrollton Station in Maryland.
NEW YORK – As part of its 50th anniversary, Amtrak, in partnership with Empire State Development (State of New York), has expanded its footprint in New York City with the opening of Moynihan Train Hall, located inside the Farley Post Office building, between 31st and 33rd Street directly across 8th Avenue from New York Penn Station. The new station, combined with recent improvements to New York Penn Station, will relieve crowding, improve passenger comfort and security, and offer an enhanced facility that will better serve Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor (NEC) and long-distance travelers, and commuter rail passengers.
“Amtrak’s Moynihan Train Hall will deliver the world-class rail travel experience our customers deserve when traveling to and from this incredible city. The beautiful vistas, modern design, new amenities and enhanced accessibility features showcase the kinds of improvements Amtrak is undertaking across our network. Amtrak dreamed up this plan 35 years ago and we deeply thank the Governor, Senator Schumer and the New York Congressional delegation, and all out partners for helping to make it a reality.”