Last public grade crossing on Keystone Service corridor to close

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'Keystone Service' train No. 665, a Saturday and Sunday run, passes the new overpass west of Lancaster that will soon replace the grade crossing at the right. It is the last crossing on the 104-mile route between Harrisburg and Philadelphia.
Wayne Laepple
LANCASTER, Pa. – The completion of a new highway overpass and closure of a nearby grade crossing in late September opens the way for Amtrak Keystone Service trains to increase their top speed from 110 mph to 125 mph.

The new bridge on Eby Chiques Road between Lancaster and Mount Joy will eliminate the last public grade crossing on the 104-mile route between Harrisburg and Philadelphia, according to Amtrak. A new interlocking signal system, station improvements, and new stations at Mount Joy and Middletown will also enable faster travel times when they are completed, the Lancaster Intelligencer-New Era reports.

The new bridge, built at a cost of $7.86 million, will allow the closure of a nearby road now protected by gates and lights. The road will dead-end, with cul-de-sacs on either side of the double track Amtrak line.

Longer high-level platforms at stations will permit faster loading and unloading times for passengers since more doors will open, reducing dwell times for trains.

According to Amtrak, the present 110 mph speed limit is the fastest in the U.S. outside the Northeast Corridor. While the speed limit could be raised to 125 mph, no plan do so has been announced.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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