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Accessibility Update

Amtrak Accessibility Update: August 2016

By September 9, 2016 No Comments

ADA Stations Program Progress

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 491 of the 516 stations Amtrak serves in the United States are required to be made accessible. Amtrak recently decided to reclassify all 25 of its flag stops as regular station stops (to the greatest extent possible) and thereby make them subject to ADA requirements. Amtrak will determine ADA responsibility for the various flag stop station components (structure, platform and parking) following completion of property surveys that are now in progress.

Determining ADA responsibility involves analyzing ownership of three distinct components: station structure, platform and parking. As of the date hereof, Amtrak has:

  • Sole ADA Responsibility for 135 stations
  • Shared ADA Responsibility for 239 stations
  • No ADA Responsibility for 126 stations

As noted above, Amtrak has either sole or shared ADA responsibility at 374 stations; these stations constitute the Amtrak ADA Stations Program (ADASP).

Stations Work Completed to Date

  • Land Survey: 354
  • ADA Assessment: 286
  • Design: 89
  • Construction Awarded: 71
  • Construction Complete: 37*

*Not all scopes of work included platform work. Some stations may require additional work at a later date to bring platforms into compliance with the ADA.

Amtrak also identified 80 stations in its national system for which it had ADA responsibility for Passenger Information Display Systems (PIDS) with known or potential deficiencies. A number of these stations have an audible public address (PA) system but do not have a messaging component that communicates that same information visually. In addition, there are stations with legacy PIDS that have both PA and electronic signage but that are not ADA compliant because there is no visual message functionality that would enable synchronized dual-mode announcements.

Passenger Information Display Systems Work Completed to Date

  • Design Task Order: 33
  • Design Completed: 20
  • Deployment Task Order: 23
  • Deployment Go Live: 16

Project Spotlight: Huntington, W. Va.

Cardinal train in the New River Gorge

The Cardinal passes through West Virginia’s stunning New River Gorge.

Crews recently completed a variety of accessibility projects at the Huntington, W. Va., station, which is served six times a week by the Cardinal (New York-Washington-Chicago). In Fiscal Year 2015, more than 10,700 customers began or ended their journey at the Huntington station.

New concrete ramps and accessible walkways make it easier to travel between the parking areas, depot and platform. The parking area now has accessible spaces with striping, signage and wheel stops. New city identifier signs line the platform, and accessible signage was installed in and around the depot.

The depot’s vestibule doors were outfitted with new ADA compliant hardware, and the ticket counter was lowered to ensure accessibility for passengers using wheeled mobility devices. Renovated men’s and women’s restrooms include new fixtures, wider stalls and alarms with audible and visual elements. Amtrak also installed PIDS – one LCD monitor inside and one LED monitor outside – at the station.

Two photos of ADA accessible parking area

The parking area (left) now features accessible spaces with striping, signage and wheel stops (right).

Before and after photo of ticket counter area

The ticket counter (left) was lowered (right) to ensure it is accessible for customers using a wheeled mobility device.

Opened in 1983 and built to a standard Amtrak design, the Huntington depot is located on the southern edge of downtown. In 1869, Collis P. Huntington, president of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway, chose this location on the Ohio River as the railroad’s westernmost terminal. Huntington was incorporated two years later and absorbed older, surrounding settlements as it grew. The community’s rich railroad heritage is evident in sites like Heritage Station – an historic Baltimore & Ohio Railroad passenger depot near the waterfront that today houses shops and restaurants.

How We Work: The ADA Executive Oversight Committee

When discussing accessibility at Amtrak, you often hear references to the “EOC” – but what is this group and what does it do? The Amtrak Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Executive Oversight Committee (EOC) includes senior executives representing almost every Amtrak department, from Operations to Law to Finance.

They are responsible for providing oversight of and direction to the Amtrak ADASP, as well as other accessibility efforts throughout the company. The EOC members meet at least monthly as a group and at least quarterly with representatives from the disability community to discuss issues of common concern. The EOC is currently chaired by Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer DJ Stadtler.

Questions? Story Ideas?

We’re interested in hearing your feedback. Please contact us at GreatAmericanStations@Amtrak.com