Amtrak showcases new Acela trains for the Northeast Corridor Local news

Starting in the fall of 2023, Amtrak customers can ride up and down the Northeast Corridor at speeds in excess of 160 mph, with the next generation of Acela trains.

Acela Trains offers Amtrak customers a trip from Boston to Washington, DC, currently running a fleet of 20 trains serving 304 passengers from first class and business class to shared seating.

Trains are now traveling at 150 miles per hour.

In 2019, Amtrak teamed up with manufacturer Alstom to begin prototyping the new Acela train.

The new train will accommodate 386 passengers with an additional eight trains, said Michelle Tartalani, Amtrak’s assistant vice president for the New Acela program.

“So the newest Acela will be 386 (passengers),” Tortalani said. “The current Acela is 304. So you take that 386 for the newest Acela and the fact that you’ve grown from 20 to 28 trains. That’s a 70% increase in seat capacity. “

The new trains will offer a host of updated amenities from front to rear. For example, passengers will have red doors and recycled leather seats with red headrests starting in first class. In addition, the advanced space allows first-class passengers to spread their legs, having the optimal space for personal comfort and individual armrests.

“More space between the seats,” Tortalani said. “You have double armrests, you have chairs in your lap so you don’t fall asleep next door. You’ll have individual USB power. So only the extra amenities that have been added.”

Tortalani added that the new Acela trains have rethought what luggage space looks like.

“Upstairs, you see, it’s a streamlined area for your luggage,” she said. “So in the current Acela trains, it looks like a plane with bunkers. And what it does makes it airy here. So it’s just easier, and easier to figure out whether you forgot your luggage or not.”

The new trains have also made it more accessible to passengers with wheelchairs.

In the new trains, customers will experience spacious bathrooms that provide greater comfort and comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The current bathrooms on the train may be as cramped as booths, but upgraded facilities are expected to offer a better experience. For example, bathrooms are non-contact, equipped with non-contact functions and automatic doors, and have a turning radius of 60 inches.

Business-class cartridges will also get more legroom in their blue leather seats.

Amtrak has also improved the instructional experience by introducing new screens that display safety precautions and sound all instructions.

“This is another area that has been greatly improved,” Tortalani said. “More displays, and it gives you both visual and audio, so if you’re visually impaired, you’ll hear audio and vice versa. And it’ll give you all the important information and, as you can see, lots of displays all over the car to you knew you had all the information you needed. ”

The train also has many upgraded technologies, including a new landing system at the same level.

Going from one car to another, Tartalani explained: “As we move from this car to the next, it’s all the same landing. So that means the two cars have a common wheel pair, allowing you to have that level of landing from car to car “It’s a great security feature.”

Tortalani said the new trains require the use of sustainability; the leather used on the seats is derived from recycled materials. She said that the new trains themselves will reduce energy consumption by 20%. Also, fresh air is exchanged every six minutes.

The trains also rethought the cafe car. The new Acela trains will have an electronic menu with “grab and ride” sections and a service bar for hot meals and drinks. In addition, there are tables available for eating, working or gathering.

“You can park at side tables, you know, lean on, and it’s just a lot of space.” At the current Acela, it’s just very crowded when you drive by. “

According to Tortalani, if they launch, Amtrak is likely to debut about 10 new Acela trains.

The new Acela trains will provide more than 1,300 new jobs in 35 cities.

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