January 4, 2019
All U.S. Commuter Rail Systems Meet Congressional PTC Deadline

All U.S. commuter rail systems have successfully met the Dec. 31, 2018, congressional deadline for 2018 PTC installation milestones, according to an APTA analysis, and all commuter railroads are 100 percent committed to completely implementing PTC before or by December 2020.

“Installing and implementing PTC is an unparalleled technical challenge in scale, complexity and time required,” said APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas. “The commuter railroad industry has made extraordinary efforts to meet the 2018 deadline and will continue its focus and hard work to complete full implementation before or by December 2020.”

Current law required commuter railroads to meet the following milestones by the end of 2018: install all PTC hardware (wayside and onboard equipment); acquire all necessary spectrum for PTC implementation; complete all employee training; initiate testing on at least one territory subject to the PTC requirement (or other criteria); and submit a revised plan and alternative schedule to the U.S. secretary of transportation for implementing a PTC system.

One challenge facing commuter rail systems in the next two years is interoperability, with operators ensuring that their implementation is seamlessly operational for both host and tenant operators. This will require thorough communication and coordination among the various host and tenant railroads.

Full implementation of PTC for publicly funded commuter railroads is estimated to cost more than $4 billion. This amount does not account for up to $130 million in annual future operating and maintenance costs, and it comes on top of the existing $90 billion backlog needed to bring the public transportation industry into a state of good repair.

For more information on PTC, click here.

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APTA Congratulates New T&I Leaders DeFazio, Graves

APTA congratulates the new leaders of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee: Reps. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), chairman, and Sam Graves, ranking member. APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas called both DeFazio and Graves “tireless advocates for transportation investment [who] have worked together in a bipartisan manner to champion initiatives that advance public transportation.”

APTA Urges Congress to End the Shutdown, Increase Investment in Public Transportation

APTA released a statement Jan. 3 encouraging the 116th Congress to end the partial government shutdown that has continued for nearly two weeks and approve the FY 2019 budget for transportation as well as work together to develop bipartisan infrastructure investment legislation.

In the statement, APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas acknowledged the House’s passage of legislation that would provide full-year funding for DOT, including more than $16 billion for public transportation and passenger rail investments, and called on congressional leaders and President Trump to work toward a bipartisan solution to end the shutdown.

He called the legislation “critical to restore the nation's public transportation systems to a state of good repair, expand services to growing communities and keep the economy moving by creating jobs, increasing prosperity, and connecting people to jobs, local businesses and health care.”

Just prior to the shutdown, FRA announced $46.3 million in grant funding for 11 projects in 10 states to assist with deploying PTC systems for passenger rail—completing the award of $250 million in funding made available under the FY 2018 Consolidated Appropriations Act and via the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program. The full list of recipients is here.


Why not take advantage of the new year to learn more about the public transportation industry? Mark your calendars now and plan to attend these APTA events:

Business Member Board of Governors Annual Business Meeting
January 22-25, 2019
Naples, FL

Legal Affairs Seminar
February 24-26, 2019
New Orleans, LA

Marketing & Communications Workshop

February 24-27, 2019
New Orleans, LA

Risk Management Seminar

February 25-28, 2019
New Orleans, LA

Legislative Conference

March 17-19, 2019
Washington, DC


Back to the Future in London—The London Transport Museum is raising funds to restore three of the city's oldest surviving subway carriages. The Q-stock trains, in operation from 1938 to 1971, will be refitted to showcase London life during different periods of history.

Seen as Well as Heard—CBC in Montreal caught up with Michèle Deslauriers, longtime Metro announcer, who recently began appearing in customer safety and awareness videos.

WMATA Expands Bikes on Board—In response to customer requests, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority is allowing bicyclists to bring their bikes on board Metro trains during rush hour.

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