This week’s Five Friday Facts come via a recent article in the New York Times which looked at the increase in ridership on Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor line. Here are some general facts about the rail line, including current and future projections of ridership. Check back for next week for another set of facts about the budgetary and economic situation Amtrak faces moving forward.
- Between New York and Washington, Amtrak said, 75 percent of travelers go by train. Prior to 2001, Amtrak had just over a third of the business between New York and Washington.
- In the same period, Amtrak said, its market share between New York and Boston grew to 54 percent from 20 percent.
- Nationally, Amtrak ridership is at a record 30 million people; the Northeast accounts for more than a third of that and is virtually the only portion of Amtrak’s system that makes money.
- By 2040, given the trends, Amtrak said traffic in the corridor could reach 43.5 million passengers, almost four times the level today.
- Several locomotives and railcars are 30 years old or more. Aging rails, bridges and tunnels hold down top speeds and limit expansion of the network.
Image source: Metropolitan Museum of Art