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Rail News: Passenger Rail

Maryland Gov. O'Malley dedicates commuter-rail station


Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley joined other officials earlier this week to open the MARC system's Halethorpe Station following a two-year, $32.7 million reconstruction project.

One of the five busiest stops on the Penn Line and used by 1,300 passengers each day, the station underwent a renovation project that will "significantly" ease how passengers move about the facility, an important element as MARC continues to accommodate ridership growth, state officials said in a press release.

Average weekday ridership on MARC reached a record 39,000 in June, they said.

Halethorpe Station improvements include two new 700-foot-long, high-level platforms; a pedestrian bridge; new elevators; sidewalks and ramps to accommodate travelers with physical disabilities; full platform-length canopies; drop-off locations; new lighting and public address systems; restrooms; landscaping; and new ticket areas.

Investing in transit creates jobs, eases traffic congestion and makes Maryland "an even more attractive place for companies to invest," O'Malley said.

The project was part of the O'Malley administration's $532 million investment in upgrades to Maryland's commuter-rail system since 2007.