PHILADELPHIA—30th Street Station now sports a new, cohesive wayfinding signage program that provides millions of visitors with clear directions and information about Amtrak, SEPTA and New Jersey Transit services. More than four million Amtrak passengers used the station in Fiscal Year 2014, making it the third-busiest in the national network.
The(PennDOT), under a grant from the Federal Transit Administration, provided all funding for the design, fabrication and installation of the approximately 100 signs. Amtrak executed the logistics and procurement, with installation occurring between November 2014 and July 2015.
Stakeholders including Amtrak, PennDOT and SEPTA began planning for the signage program in 2008. New York-based Calori & Vanden-Eynden Design Consultants and Baker Engineering led the creative process, which involved developing an overall visual identity for the signage and creating full-size mock-ups. They also made sure the signage complied with the Americans with Disabilities Act and historic preservation guidelines.
Amtrak and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have long been strong partners in efforts to enhance passenger rail service in the state. Amtrak owns the 104 mile Keystone Corridor (Philadelphia-Harrisburg), as well as the portion of the Northeast Corridor (Washington-Boston) that runs through southeast Pennsylvania. Funds made available by PennDOT allow for multiple daily frequencies of the Keystone Service (New York-Philadelphia-Harrisburg) and the daily Pennsylvanian (New York-Philadelphia-Pittsburgh).
Between 2004 and 2006, the partners undertook the “Keystone Corridor Improvement Project.” Improvements allowed for top speeds of 110 mph, all-electric train service and additional train frequencies including express options. To accomplish these goals, the electric system that powers the trains was replaced and continuous welded rail and concrete ties were installed. The commonwealth and Amtrak also planned a number of continuing station enhancement projects. Infrastructure upgrades have positively impacted ridership along the Keystone Corridor; between Fiscal Years 2004 and 2014, Keystone Service ridership more than doubled to reach 1.3 million.
Today, PennDOT continues to work with Amtrak and other stakeholders to craft an integrated vision for Philadelphia 30thStreet Station and the surrounding area as part of the Philadelphia 30th Street Station District Plan. Goals center on the concepts of community, connectivity and identity. The public is invited to comment on the master planning process and participate in a series of workshops through 2015.