US rail company Amtrak has celebrated the completion of its $3.8m upgrade of the Del Rio station in Texas, which has updated the infrastructure and improved the accessibility of its platform.
Alongside the city of Del Rio, Amtrak has constructed a 650ft concrete platform, installed a mobile lift enclosure and upgraded station signage as part of its work to ensure the station meets the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Amtrak’s assistant vice-president George Holz said the company wanted Del Rio to be a comfortable environment for passengers: “Making Amtrak stations accessible to all customers is a priority and we’re actively performing construction, renovation, repair and upgrade projects at stations across our national network.”
The station is one of the stops along the New Orleans to Los Angeles ‘Sunset Limited‘ route operated by Amtrak three days a week. Its new upgrade also means that passengers will be able to cross walkways to the Del Rio Regional Transportation Centre to connect with local buses and taxis.
Additionally, parking stalls, public right-of-way access and energy-efficient LED lighting also formed part of Amtrak’s upgrades as part of its ADA Stations Program, which has invested nearly $800m into stations since 2011.
Del Rio Mayor Alvaro Arreola described the project as a sign of progress for the city: “Amtrak’s enhancements are a testament to our commitment to an inclusive travel experience. This project reaffirms our city’s dedication to being accessible to everyone, promoting equality and community growth.”
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As part of the ADA programme, 20 stations were brought into compliance with the act in the last fiscal year, while another 35 stations are set to be upgraded in the next fiscal year. 143 station designs and 39 station construction projects are also being advanced with an aim of 100% completion by 2029.
The accessibility programme is one of many multi-million dollar station infrastructure investments being made by Amtrak, alongside the construction of a new West Baltimore MARC station in Maryland as part of the new Frederick Douglass Tunnel project, which recently saw the appointment of its first major contractors.