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Rail News: Communication and Signal

Amtrak, MTA install backup power system for Baltimore Penn Station

Amtrak and the Maryland Transit Administration have installed a $1.2 million backup generator system at Baltimore Penn Station to maintain the facility’s operations during extended utility outages, Amtrak announced late last week.

The new generator will provide emergency backup power to maintain critical station services during a power failure. Penn Station is the eighth-busiest station in Amtrak's national network.

In addition to Amtrak passengers, the station serves MARC Penn Line commuters and riders on the city's light-rail lines.

“The support systems may be invisible much of the time, but behind the scenes, the generator ensures uninterrupted service to critical utilities like the fire alarm systems and computer information display systems to provide a seamless station experience for all passengers," said Rina Cutler, Amtrak's senior director of infrastructure and investment development, in a press release.

Amtrak also will upgrade Wi-Fi in the station and on the platform. Baltimore Penn is one of two stations chosen for a pilot wireless network upgrade, Amtrak officials said.

In addition, Amtrak is seeking a public-private master developer partnership to redevelop the station and adjacent property into a mixed use, transit-oriented hub. Amtrak officials anticipate releasing a master development request for qualifications in fall.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/14/2016