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Amtrak has issued a request for proposals for development of a comprehensive master plan for Philadelphia 30th Street Station and the surrounding area. The plan's purpose is to create a vision for the station and the area around it, including the potential development of air rights above the rail yards, Amtrak officials said in a prepared statement.As part of the process, the railroad, Drexel University and Brandywine Realty Trust have created a coordinating committee including stakeholders in the station's vicinity to help guide the master planning process.Committee participants include the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, city of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania, CSX Corp., Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp., Schuylkill River Development Corp. and University City District.The RFP is being issued as demand for passenger-rail service continues at record levels, Amtrak officials said. In fiscal-year 2012, a record 31.2 million passengers rode on Amtrak trains, and forecasts predict a 59 percent increase in ridership and 41 percent increase in train volumes in Philadelphia by 2030, Amtrak officials said.In addition to considering adjoining planning and development efforts, community interests and regional planning initiatives among other factors, the planning process will accommodate future Amtrak, New Jersey Transit and SEPTA ridership growth, and evaluate all aspects of the rider experience at the station.The closing date for submitting proposals is Nov. 18.
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