Ready To Build: Susquehanna River Bridge


[light music] The Amtrak bridge over
the Susquehanna River in northeastern Maryland behind
me is a critical link for both passenger and freight trains on
the busy Northeast Corridor. Richter: Built more than
a century ago, the bridge has become a choke point for
the more than 100 Amtrak, MARC commuter and freight
trains that cross it every day. Here the three-track railroad
narrows to just two tracks. The bridge’s antiquated design
also means that trains must slow from 125 mph to 90 mph
while crossing the bridge. In addition, the bridge’s
central span is opened a dozen times a year
for river traffic. Because the bridge does not have
modern, automated machinery, we bring out roughly 30 people
to open the bridge. Every person has their own task. When we have to do any
significant maintenance on the bridge, and
we have to take one of those two tracks out of
service, then traffic backs up for both Amtrak, MARC commuter
and Norfolk Southern, because then we’re
single-tracking the Northeast Corridor. Smith: A lot of people don’t
realize that in addition to the passenger trains that
use the Northeast Corridor such as Amtrak and
the commuter trains, that there are a number
of freight railroads that also access and rely on the Northeast Corridor
for their operations. Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor is a
vital link for Norfolk Southern as it serves its customers
in Maryland and Delaware. Norfolk Southern connects to
Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor at Perryville, Maryland via
what we call our “Port Road.” From Perryville, we get
onto the Northeast Corridor and run south over the
Susquehanna River Bridge. Norfolk Southern handles a
wide variety of products – for bringing farm machinery in that actually was
constructed in the Midwest and is coming through
the Port of Baltimore to be exported to
Eastern Europe. The Port of Baltimore
is responsible for 13,000 direct jobs. In addition to that, there’s
130,000 jobs within Maryland that are linked to
the Port of Baltimore. Husband: On any given day,
Norfolk Southern is operating somewhere between eight and
ten freight trains a day over the Susquehanna
River Bridge. If the Susquehanna River
Bridge was disabled for an extended period of time, you would see an immediate
effect on the national economy. There would be a lot of delays in the delivery of
all that material. So, the Susquehanna River Bridge is just an absolutely vital part
of the Northeast Corridor and anything that can be done to
modernize it is a good thing. Amtrak and its partners – the
Federal Railroad Administration and the Maryland Department
of Transportation have a plan to relieve
this major choke point and modernize this
river crossing. They envision two new,
fixed, high-level bridges with a total of four tracks, to
improve trip time and safety, and allow for more
trains in the future. About 1.7 billion dollars
is needed to build the soaring structures, and Amtrak is working with
federal and state partners to secure funding and advance
design and construction. Together they are ready to build
the infrastructure of the future to provide this
region with effective freight and passenger
transportation.

21 thoughts on “Ready To Build: Susquehanna River Bridge

  1. Well In my opinion you should spend more money on the Avealia Liberty, and Track upgrades, I understand this is vital, though and needs to be done

  2. America has a lot of catching up to do with its rail system, look at countries like India and China who are big countries and are doing just fine with their rail systems. America can learn from both.

  3. Why the tape of the tax payer. 1.7 is way to much. Up rail road built the much bigger Kate Shelly bridge for 50 million dollars, ns Corp is building the same size bridge for 50 million dollars at portageville ny. Why so much money?

  4. It's time that the ex-Pennsylvania Railroad bridge got replaced. I may be a Pennsy fan, but even I know that the bridge needs replacement.

  5. Just put a second Bridge next to it. Then you got not one but 2 bridges which means you never have to worry about it being knocked out cause the other will take its place. It is better in the long run.

  6. With today's House vote, and expected subsequent Senate approval and DJT signature, the $$$ is HERE! FINALLY! Let's get to work! NOW!

  7. Amtrak, many people are wanting to shut you down. The biggest group is the Heritage foundation and now that Trump is in office they say they have no better chance than now to shut you down. Don't let that happen, don't let the president take away half of the funding for you and murder all of the Amtrak long distance trains. I support you and a lot of others do. So please do all you can to have your company survive.

  8. Why don’t you have China investing in new rail infrastructure like in Africa. Put the project entirely in Chinese hands and it will be done in 2 years…then Trump can have his tax cuts without putting the financial burden in future generations with the huge loans..

  9. You know I think Norfolk southern should connect with the CSX line and let Amtrak have full control over the NEC to allow full high speed bullet trains.

  10. The video states that there were 6.4 million Amtrak trips across the bridge in 2016. Do the math, that would mean 700+ trains an hour. I doubt that 6.4 million trips were made in the last decade. That would be 70 trips per hour. Maybe they meant 6.4 million rail cars?

  11. 1.7 billion is a rape of the us tax payers. That bridge is way over priced

  12. just build a new one next to it and leave the old one stand. maybe run some steam trains across it a few times a year.

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