Drivers on Duke Street may have to crane their necks to see the brick façade of the Lancaster Amtrak Station among the dirt piles, construction trailers and cyclone fencing. But the station renovations have only just begun.
Drivers on Duke Street may have to crane their necks to see
the brick façade of the Lancaster Amtrak Station among the dirt piles,
construction trailers and cyclone fencing. But the station renovations have
only just begun.
Workers are in the first phases of the building renovations
and exterior improvements, said Michael Myers, operations manager and a senior
associate for KCI Technologies Inc. The Hunt Valley, Md.-based company is
performing construction management for the project.
On the outside, workers are setting up parking and trailers
for project personnel, Myers said. Workers inside the station are gutting,
reassembling and upgrading the building’s basement, where Amtrak workers have
Officials broke ground in late June on the $12 million
project at 53 E. McGovern Ave., which has been more than a decade in the
The project received $9.6 million from the federal
government, $2 million from the state, and $400,000 from Lancaster County.
Renovations are set to be complete in May or June 2011, and
the project is on time and on budget, Myers said.
Patrons will see no impact on parking, entrances and exits
or train service during the renovations, he said.
The Lancaster Amtrak train station dates to 1929 and is on
the National Register of Historic Places as part of the city’s historic
district, which adds extra challenges to working on the site, Myers said.
“The Amtrak station is near and dear to folks,” he said. “We
need to be careful … that the historic architecture and design have been
Among the other improvements on tap:
• Increasing the number of parking spaces from 175 to 237.
• A new Trailways bus terminal.
• Improved landscaping.
• A new heating and cooling system and new restrooms.
• Rehabilitation of the building’s exterior and interior.
• Realigning the driveway with Duke Street and relocating
the taxi drop-off area.
The renovations will have a wide audience once they’re
complete; the station is Amtrak’s third-busiest in Pennsylvania and ranks 22nd
out of 525 such terminuses nationwide.
And ridership in the area has been on the upswing, Amtrak
spokeswoman Karina Romero said.
From the Tuesday before Thanksgiving to the Monday after,
31,730 passengers travelled on Amtrak trains through the Keystone corridor,
which runs between Harrisburg and Philadelphia and includes Lancaster.
That’s a 12.5 percent increase over the previous year, she
“The renovations definitely will improve the amenities for
our passengers, and as result of that we expect some increase in ridership,”
The project also fits into the larger picture of multimodal
transportation in the Red Rose City, according to PennDOT.
“We’ve been working the past several years to improve the
gateways into the city of Lancaster — with the Fruitville Pike bridge and in a
few years with the Lititz Pike bridge,” said Toby Fauver, deputy secretary of
local and area transportation for PennDOT, in a statement.
“This renovated train station will be the gem of our efforts
to improve the transportation gateways and augment the redevelopment happening
both within and surrounding the city.”