CHARLESTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – Amtrak customers now have a more accessible journey with the completion of a $6.4 million project at the Charleston Amtrak Station.
The upgrades are part of the company’s overall commitment to advance accessibility improvements to ensure a safe, efficient, and comfortable travel experience for customers.
The station serves the Amtrak Cardinal which travels three times a week from New York and Chicago, with a stop at the station at 350 MacCorkle Ave. SE.
“Ensuring an accessible travel experience is a priority and we’re actively advancing construction, renovation, repair, and upgrade projects at stations across our national network,” said Dennis Newman, Amtrak Executive Vice President of Strategy & Planning.
“We want all of our stations to be a welcoming and comfortable environment for customers. We are pleased we delivered these improvements to enhance the Charleston station.”
At the Charleston station, customers can access a new 800-foot-long concrete platform featuring new lighting, guardrails, signage, and a stormwater system.
The platform is located alongside the historic station building and extends underneath the Southside Bridge.
The platform provides customers with a more accessible and sturdier surface as well as a brighter area to board on and off the train.
This work was performed in close coordination with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), CSX, West Virginia Division of Culture and History, West Virginia Department of Highways, and the city of Charleston.
“For decades, Amtrak has provided safe and reliable travel options across the country, and these transportation services are especially critical in rural states like West Virginia,” U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) said.
“I’m proud to have supported these upgrades at the Charleston station, which will ensure a more accessible and efficient travel experience for both West Virginians and those visiting our great state. These improvements are evidence of Amtrak’s continued commitment to serving each and every West Virginian, and I applaud their efforts.”
Manchin also stated that he along with Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) is working to return the Cardinal to daily service.
Manchin says he expects the needed funding for Amtrak to be passed in an appropriations bill at the end of this year.
Amtrak has officially applied to the FRA’s Corridor Identification and Development Program to fund improvements to increase Cardinal service to operate daily.
“Thank you, Senator Manchin, for helping to secure funding to make our local Amtrak station more accessible for folks who are traveling to and from our capital city,” Charleston Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin said.
“Amtrak has long been a popular means of travel – whether for work or for fun. Now, when folks travel to Charleston, they will be greeted with upgraded facilities, improved access from the platform to the parking lots, and a more comfortable overall experience.”