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Rail News Home Passenger Rail

October 2016

Part 1 : Progressive Railroading's Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Preface

Part 2 : Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Amtrak and transit agencies in Arizona & California

Part 3 : Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Colorado, Florida, & Georgia

Part 4 : Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Illinois, New Jersey, & New York

Part 5 : Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Ohio and Pennsylvania

Part 6 : Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Texas & Washington

Rail News: Passenger Rail

Progressive Railroading’s Passenger Rail at a Glance 2016: Ohio and Pennsylvania





Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) provides public transit services to Cuyahoga County, Ohio. Services include heavy and light rail, bus, bus rapid transit and paratransit. The agency was established Dec. 30, 1974, as a successor to Cleveland Transit System, Shaker Heights Rapid Transit and a number of suburban bus systems.

Service launched: Light rail, 1913; heavy rail, 1955.
Miles per mode: Light rail, 15.3; heavy rail, 19.
Rolling stock: 1 locomotive, average age 34 years; 60 rail cars, average age 35; 48 light-rail vehicles, average age 33.
Annual ridership: light rail, 2.6 million; heavy rail, 6.4 million.
Annual operating cost: $267.7 million (2016 budget)*
Annual capital cost: $29.7 million
Stations: Light rail, 34; heavy rail, 18.

Projects underway or scheduled to begin, total project cost, major contracts and anticipated project timeline:
• 3 light-rail grade crossing replacements, $3 million, Delta RR Construction 2016.
• 3 light rail grade crossing replacements, $3.4 million, 2017
• 3 substations replacement, with modular, $6 million, 2017
• Fiber optic system replacement, $8 million, 2017-18
• Track rehabilitation, West 30th to West 98th, $8.5 million, 2017-2018
• Track 8 replacement, $5.1 million, Delta RR Construction, 2016
• Brookpark Station reconstruction, Mid American Construction, $12.2 million, 2016
• East 116th Station reconstruction, $4.5 million, 2016-18
• East 34th Station reconstruction, $5.3 million, 2017-18
• East Boulevard track bridge reconstruction, $`1.9 million, Suburban Maintenance & Construction, 2016-17
• East 92nd/CSX bridge rehabilitation, $2 million, Suburban Maintenance & Construction, 2016-17

*Information source:



OPERATING BUDGET: $1.4 billion

Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) is the nation’s sixth largest public transportation system with an extensive network of fixed route services that include bus, subway, trolley, trackless trolley, high-speed and regional rail serving a 2,202- square-mile service region. SEPTA’s service region includes five counties in Pennsylvania — Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery — and extends to Trenton, N.J., and Newark, Del. SEPTA is one of the region’s largest employers with a workforce of 9,000 employees.

Service launched: SEPTA began operating heavy-rail service in 1968, light-rail in 1969 and commuter-rail in 1983. SEPTA was created by the state of Pennsylvania in 1964 to consolidate private regional public transportation operators. SEPTA’s predecessor rail agencies began providing passenger service in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
Miles per mode: light rail, 42; heavy rail, 47; commuter rail, 280
Rolling stock: eight locomotives, average age 27 years; 404 rail cars, average age 29 years; 167 light-rail vehicles, average age 33 years. Locomotives on order: 13, manufactured by Siemens.
Annual ridership: light rail, 28,500,600; heavy rail, 91,861,300; commuter rail, 37,413,300.
Annual operating budget: $1.4 billion (FY2017)
Annual capital budget: $548.63 million (FY2017)
Stations: eight light rail, 75 heavy rail, 154 commuter rail

Major projects include:
• Crum Creek Viaduct on the Media/Elwyn Line. Replacing a 925-foot-long, 100-foot-high steel viaduct built in 1895. SEPTA also is performing structural remediation on three other viaducts, performing a rock cut stabilization project, and replacing the overhead contact system on the Media/Elwyn Line.
• Frazer Rail Shop and Yard modernization. Procurement of new locomotives and a fleet of multilevel cars for the Regional Rail system. To accommodate the increased fleet size, the 35-year-old shop and yard facilities will be renovated and expanded. The initial phase will include significant earth work and stormwater improvements at the 40-acre site to create space for additional yard track. Later phases will provide for additional shop buildings and vehicle maintenance equipment necessary to maintain the new operating fleet. Budget for this project: $139.6 million. Construction completion: late 2019.

Project contracts to be let:
• Resiliency program to renew and harden infrastructure vulnerable to extreme weather. The program was partially funded by a resiliency grant from the Federal Transit Administration. The projects include rock-cut stabilization in Media in Delaware County and near Jenkintown in Montgomery County; flood mitigation at Sharon Hill (Delaware County) and Jenkintown; shoreline stabilization on the Manayunk/Norristown Line in Montgomery County; reinforcement of the regional railroad signal power system; installation of emergency power generators in pump rooms at the Broad Street Subway in Philadelphia; and construction of an ancillary control center.
• Infrastructure improvements near the University City Station. The project includes replacement of 80-year-old catenary, construction of rehabilitation of four interlockings, retiring an interlocking, tie and surface renewal, and signal improvements in an area that is adjacent to the Northeast Corridor. These improvements will be constructed between 2017 and 2019.
• Service restoration on the Media-Elwyn Regional Railroad Line from its current terminus at Elwyn Station to Wawa, Delaware County. (Service beyond Elwyn was discontinued in the 1980s.) Early action phase to stabilize embankments on sections of this line was completed in 2010. The next component of the restoration calls for retaining walls, the rehabilitation or replacement of nine bridges and the replacement of track, catenary, and structures and signals. The last component will be construction of a new station, a 600-car parking deck and an intermodal connection. The current budget for this project is $150.6 million.
• Substation program, a multiyear effort to rehabilitate 80-year-old traction power substations on the Regional Railroad. The first substations to be addressed are under construction and include Lenni and Morton on the Media/Elwyn Line; and Jenkintown and Ambler on the Main Line. Fourteen additional substations will be overhauled or replaced, and a new substation will be constructed on the West Trenton Line.

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