Amtrak Sets Ridership, Revenue Records

Amtrak said this week that it set a revenue record in fiscal year 2014 and achieved a slight increase in ridership over the prior fiscal year.

Ticket revenue reached in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 hit $2.189 billion, a 4.0 percent jump over the previous year.

Ridership was more than 30.9 million, an increase of 0.2 percent over adjusted FY 2013 numbers.

“The slower growth in ridership than in recent years is due, in part, to a harsh winter season and on-time performance issues associated with freight train delays and infrastructure in need of replacement,” Amtrak said.

Ridership on long-distance routes and state-supported services declined by 4.5 percent and 0.6 pecent, respectively in FY 2014.

Eight routes outside the Northeast Corridor set ridership records, including the Adirondack, Auto Train, Blue Water, Capitol Limited, Empire Service, Piedmont, and Washington-Lynchburg.

“However, meeting future growth in passenger demand requires investing in the infrastructure that supports intercity passenger rail and resolving unacceptable congestion delays caused by freight railroads that own the tracks,” said Amtrak President Joe Boardman in news release. “As more and more people choose Amtrak for their travel needs, investments must be made in the tracks, tunnels, bridges, and other infrastructure used by intercity passenger trains, particularly on the Northeast Corridor and in Chicago.

“Otherwise, we face a future with increased infrastructure-related service disruptions and delays that will hurt local and regional economies and drive passengers away.”

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