PATCO finally rolled out the first of its refurbished rail cars Thursday morning, with local officials promising the $194 million overhaul will mean new levels of comfort, safety and reliability for commuters who travel between South Jersey and Center City.
The rebuilt cars, with new interiors, electronics and heating systems, are more than a year late returning to service from a factory in Hornell, N.Y., because of persistent problems fine-tuning an automatic signal system that gives operating instructions to the trains.
All systems, including new visual and audio station announcements, appeared to work flawlessly Thursday on the first train’s inaugural trip from Woodcrest station in Cherry Hill to the subway stop at 8th and Market streets in Center City.
No injuries have been reported in a freight train derailment in the Hazelwood neighborhood of Pittsburgh.
The train went off the rails about 10:15 a.m. on tracks near Irvine Street, according to emergency dispatchers.
About 10 freight cars derailed, and some of the cars blocked Irvine where the tracks crossed.
Boyertown, PA – Stepping through a rock-strewn railyard in Boyertown, families lined up to board the historic train that made its unofficial debut on the Colebrookdale line Saturday.
Beginning with a 10:30 a.m. departure for the first train, hayrides on the “Secret Valley Line” offered by the Colebrookdale Railroad drew in patrons of all kinds.
They were treated to a two-hour ride in a train used in 1869 through a valley of scenic fall foliage and other natural and historic attractions, travelling from Boyertown to Pottstown through Colebrookdale and Douglass (Berks) townships. Throughout the ride, historical narration was provided by train workers to give context to the sights along the way.
The line follows the Ironstone and Manatawny creeks and passes by the village of Pine Forge.
WASHINGTON – Amtrak’s planned new Acela Express trains will carry more passengers and be more reliable than the current ones, even if they won’t travel much faster, Amtrak president Joseph Boardman said Thursday.
Amtrak is seeking proposals, with the California High-Speed Rail Authority, for new high-speed trains that can run at 220 miles an hour on the West Coast and 160 miles an hour on the Northeast Corridor.
Proposals from train-builders are due by May 17. A builder will be selected by the end of the year, Boardman said.
The first of the new Acela trains are supposed to be in service between Washington and Boston by 2018.
Twenty-one cars of a freight train hauling oil and gas derailed this morning in Vandergrift, striking a building that houses a specialty metals firm, authorities said. No one was injured.
Hazmat crews responded to MSI Corp. in the 200 block of First Street in Vandergrift, and the state Department of Environmental Protection was sending a three-member emergency response team after reports that oil was leaking from overturned cars.
The 120-car Norfolk Southern Railway train with three locomotives was headed east around 8 a.m. when it derailed. Nineteen of the 21 derailed cars overturned.
Amtrak’s two routes with Pittsburgh stops saw ridership increases in the past fiscal year, according to ridership data the railroad announced this morning.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett announced in March that the state would commit $3.8 million to keep the service operating in the coming year.
Lancaster’s Amtrak station is finally getting a much-needed facelift.
Scaffolding reaches the ceiling in the main hall, and workers from Lobar, Inc., are repairing and patching the ornate plaster to prepare for the final paint job.
Meanwhile, members of the Lancaster Train Station Advisory Committee were told Wednesday, Amtrak workers are in the process of finishing plaster work on the west side of the concourse leading to the train platforms and putting the final coat of paint on the eastern concourse walls.
Work on the ceiling is being postponed until after a new heating/ventilating/air conditioning system is installed on the concourse roof.
Louise Frasso has fond memories of the childhood day trips she would take from Reading by train.
“My grandmother had a pass on the railroad and she would take my siblings and I to Philadelphia,” said the now-86-year-old Muhlenberg Township woman.
All those trips started and ended with the Franklin Street Station in downtown Reading.
The rail and bus hub, which was built in 1930, was still in its infancy when Frasso would travel with her family. It served Berks County for decades before the last train left in 1981 and the station fell into disrepair.
Friday, at a ceremony rededicating the station, Frasso sat grinning ear to ear as she listened to local officials discuss the work that went into restoring it. The station will be a hub for BARTA bus service.
For the third time in 18 months, Amtrak recently increased its monthly fares for commuters.
The increase affects only Amtrak’s Keystone line between Harrisburg and Philadelphia. Lancaster is the busiest station between those two points.
All SEPTA Services To Be Suspended During Hurricane Irene. Operations to Halt at 12:30 a.m. Sunday; Services to Resume Mid-Day Sunday, As Conditions Permit.
PHILADELPHIA, PA (August 26, 2011)
In the interest of public safety, with a hurricane of historic proportions approaching the region, SEPTA will cease all transportation operations at12:30 a.m. Sunday.
All trips scheduled after 12:30 a.m. Sunday will be cancelled. Service is not expected to resume until at least mid-day Sunday, following damage assessments and repairs. Service will resume on a route-by-route basis, based on conditions.
SEPTA strongly urges all customers who normally ride the system during this time period to make arrangements to go to your destination well in advance of the storm and be prepared to remain safely at that location until the storm has passed and service has resumed.
All SEPTA employees normally assigned to work during the period of the shutdown or who are assigned to emergency duty are required to report to work at their assigned locations.
The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) is spending $274 million to replace 120 passenger cars in their commuter rail system.
73 of these new cars will replace ones built in the 1960’s!!! The first three new cars went on their maiden voyage this morning.
The new Silverliner V rail cars are being partially built in South Korea and finished in Philly. The new cars have better air-conditioning and heating systems, wider doors, wider aisles, larger windows and wheelchair areas. All 120 cars should be in service by mid 2011.