Amtrak Will Purchase New Train Cars for 14 Overnight Routes

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Amtrak Will Purchase New Train Cars for 14 Overnight Routes

Amtrak plans to replace railcars for popular routes such as the Auto Train, California Zephyr, Coast Starlight, Crescent, Empire Builder and Southwest Chief. Several companies are now submitting ideas as part of the first formal step to completely reequip the Amtrak Long Distance Network that provides service on 14 overnight routes from coast to coast.

“Purchasing new long distance train cars will allow Amtrak to upgrade and modernize the iconic and vital overnight services that link our nation’s major regions. We are looking for new trains that improve safety, reliability, accessibility, and efficiency while offering the features our customers believe are most important to modernizing overnight train travel for the 21st century,” said Amtrak Board Chair Tony Coscia in a statement.

Last month, a Request for Information was sent to potential suppliers defining and describing the scope of Amtrak’s overnight train fleet, including Superliner I & II, Viewliner I & II and Amfleet II railcars. As part of this effort, Amtrak is also researching design elements and customer amenities to evolve overnight and cross-country train travel in the coming decades.

Later this year, Amtrak plans to take the next step by issuing a formal procurement request. Funding for the future purchases is being provided to Amtrak through the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

The existing fleet of overnight railcars has been delivered to Amtrak over the course of 40 years—with the first of more than 800 cars entering service in 1979. Most of the equipment in the current fleet will approach the end of its service life after the next decade.

Last year, Amtrak ordered 125 new diesel-electric locomotives, primarily for use on Long Distance routes. Over the last two years, Amtrak has invested $580 million toward $1.75 billion in accessibility improvements at Amtrak stations, mainly along these routes. Additionally, Amtrak dedicated $28 million to refresh railcars in the current overnight fleet.

DDG
DDGhttp://dannydealguru.com
Based in NYC. Points/miles enthusiast for years and actively writing about it for the last 6+ years at Danny the Deal Guru. I'm always looking out for deals. Making a few bucks is always nice, but the traveling is by far the best part of this business.

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4 COMMENTS

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4 COMMENTS

  1. I know the chances are incredibly low because Americans don’t use couchettes, but I would love to see the new Nightjet cars with the capsule singles on Amtrak. As long as they kept the obs car I think it would be fine for longer routes.

  2. Amtrak should order only single-level carriages for the next generation of long distance passenger trains. They are versatile for low and high level station platforms. And they are not subject to clearance limitations in the East and potential low clearances elsewhere. Trains can become true transcontinental from New York to the Pacific Coast.
    The opportunity arisesfor long distance trains to have matching profiles along the roof line from locomotive to rear carriage or a locomotive on the opposite end. This would be aesthetically pleasing to the eyes.

  3. Why is the Texas Eagle not included!! The San Antonio to Chicago segment is long distance yet has limited services and is in poor condition, sometimes not even enough food. I know, I have been on this train! The Sightseer lounge was removed. This is too long of a trip to not have the same amenities and new conditions as the other long distance trains.

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