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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Maryland Transit prepares for double-track project, reconfigures routes and reduces headways

On Feb. 28, Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) plans to shut down the south end of its light-rail system to install a second track as part of the Light Rail Double-Track Project.

When completed in 2006, the project will eliminate train delays at single-tracked sections and improve crew access to tracks for emergency maintenance work, according to a prepared statement. MTA's system currently is 60 percent double-tracked; the project will expand double-track to 90 percent of the system.

MTA also recently reconfigured routes to provide direct, non-stop service between Hunt Valley and northern points, and BWI Airport. Instead of its three previous routes, the administration now operates Hunt Valley-to-BWI Airport and Penn Station-to-Cromwell Station routes.

MTA plans to operate over the two routes until the southern end closes Feb. 28, then resume operations on the lines after the shutdown.

Meanwhile, the administration has changed some headways to improve service. During off-peak times and weekends, MTA reduced headways to 15 minutes between Linthicum and Mount Royal stops, and 30 minutes at lines' end. Headways will remain 20 minutes apart during weekday peak hours.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/2/2004