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 Ann Arbor  Detroit Regional Rail ProjectJune 2012 Update

MiTrain rail cars pass in-motion testing
Earlier this month, SEMCOG, the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), and the rest of the project team took another major step toward running the MiTrain for special events in the Detroit and Ann Arbor areas.

The in-motion testing (reported in the May 2012 update) was conducted the week of May 7, with great success. The cars are now verified to safely and comfortably operate up to 40 MPH. The “slow running” tests were conducted by the Great Lakes Central Railroad (GLC) in Shiawassee County as the next-to-last step in readying the cars for special train service.

The final set of tests will be run by Amtrak on the Ann Arbor to Detroit corridor at speeds up to 79 MPH. Along with the technical testing of brakes, doors, and other mechanical features, Amtrak personnel will be on board simulating station stops and familiarizing themselves with the cars. Once these tests are complete, the cars will be cleared for use as Amtrak special trains. SEMCOG and MDOT expect these tests to be run in July 2012 with the first service to special events in late 2012 or early 2013.

The GLC has been doing exemplary work on these cars. Amtrak’s certified inspectors, who have inspected refurbished cars in use by other commuter services, indicated that GLC’s refurbishment work on these cars is “best in class.”

For more information, visit SEMCOG’s Ann Arbor – Detroit Regional Rail Project Web page or contact Carmine Palombo, Ann Arbor-Detroit Regional Rail Project Manager, at 313-324-3314.