The Federal Transit Administration has wrapped up an environmental review of the Metro-North Penn Station (New York) Access Project, issuing on Sept. 24 a formal Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).
Brightline, Florida’s private-sector passenger railroad, will introduce Brightline+ “door-to-door service.” In addition, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) Board has approved a fareless plan for K-14 students; and MTA New York City Transit recently celebrated a newly trained class of subway conductors as part of a push to rebuild its frontline workforce.
The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has awarded a $99.9 million construction grant to the Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (TriMet) for its 7.8-mile MAX Red Line extension project in the Portland metro area.
Amtrak’s Empire Builder train 7/27 traveling westbound from Chicago to Seattle/Portland on Sept. 25 derailed near Joplin, Mont., at 3:55 p.m. MT. The passenger train was traveling between 75-78 mph, below the 79 mph speed limit, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reported on Sept. 27 during its first media briefing.
The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has received an architectural award for its Garfield Green Line station renovation project. In addition, Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) now accepts contactless payment on all light rail, bus and Dallas Streetcar vehicles; and Phoenix Valley Metro’s Small Business Financial Assistance Program pilot has distributed more than $250,000 since its spring launch.
Amit Bose, Deputy Administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration, took on questions about automated track inspection, crew sizes, hazardous materials transportation, and port congestion, among other topics, during a Sept. 22 hearing on his nomination by President Biden to be the next Federal Railroad Administrator.
The Sound Transit Board on Sept. 23 voted not to approve a full one-year contract extension for Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff. Chair Kent Keel said during the Board meeting that after more than six years of service, Rogoff recently informed Board members that “he did not foresee remaining in his role beyond the end of 2022”; Keel said he and others did not believe they should wait until 2022 to start searching for a new leader of the transit system serving the Seattle metro area.
Nozomi Networks and Cervello have partnered to offer rail cybersecurity solutions. In addition, Skanska USA-designed and built AirTrain stations at San Francisco International Airport have received LEED Gold certifications; TRAC Intermodal has been named best overall chassis provider at the Port of New York and New Jersey; and Trapeze Group and Sentient Science are teaming to help transit agencies plan and budget for track maintenance.
The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) is embarking on a yearlong, three-phase analysis and public feedback process for “Reimagining Regional Rail.”
Amtrak executives—including newly appointed Executive Vice President-Major Program Delivery Laura Mason—addressed plans for potential infrastructure bill funding and pandemic recovery during the Rail Passengers Association’s virtual conference this week.