A new Amtrak website aims to raise awareness about Northeast Corridor (NEC) infrastructure needs and build support for capital investment in projects crucial to support economic growth in the region as well as meet a growing demand for passenger rail service.
The NEC is a critical transportation artery serving the Northeast’s cities and connecting the entire region with approximately 260 million passenger rail trips occurring every year on Amtrak and eight commuter railroads that operate over the line. Significant capital investment in the aging NEC infrastructure is necessary to deliver capacity and reliability to meet current and projected future demand for passenger rail service and reverse decades of under-investment.
The new website includes project information and updates, maps, graphics and other resources about several NEC infrastructure projects now under construction or in the planning stage. Some of the highlighted projects include the Gateway Program to expand rail capacity into New York City and replacing the Portal Bridge in New Jersey and the Baltimore & Potomac Tunnel in Maryland. There also is information on station planning and development efforts, providing next-generation high-speed rail service and other key NEC infrastructure projects and initiatives being advanced by Amtrak and its federal, state and local partners.
Amtrak’s Northeast Regional and Acela services operating between Washington and Boston each set new ridership records in FY 2014 with 11.6 million passenger trips combined — a 3.3% increase over the prior year. Demand for Acela was particularly strong, with 28 days in which the number of Acela trips topped 14,000. There were just five such days the year before.