Along with its partners, Amtrak is starting a two-phase process to select a contractor for renovation of the Claytor Concourse, Union Station’s intercity passenger and commuter rail pathway.
The station has limited space, is often overcrowded, and also lacks bathrooms which creates inconvenience for commuters. The narrow concourse needed a face-lift as it was built back in the 1980s. About five million passengers cross the station every year.
“Amtrak will expand the concourse to double its capacity, which will alleviate congestion and enhance customer comfort and accessibility. Connectivity will be improved to provide customers better access to the commuter rail and bus transportation that serves the station,” according to the press release from Amtrak.
The 70,000-square-foot space will be doubled by the company, which plans on creating a more open and spacious interior layout for a better passenger experience.
Boarding and queuing will become a lot easier after the completion of the project. More glass and natural light will be added for the comfort of the passengers at the station. There is also a plan to build a 10,000-square-foot lounge for the comfort of passengers. The project is expected to be finalized by 2022.
In 2012, Amtrak had announced a multi-million dollar plan to refurbish the concourse. However, enough funding could not be collected.
Over 300 trains are operated daily by Amtrak, connecting more than 500 destinations in 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian provinces.