Overview: BWI Marshall Airport rail station is a key intermodal hub on the NEC, serving over 5,000 daily Amtrak and MARC riders and providing connections to domestic and international flights. Although three tracks pass through the station, it has only two platforms serving each of the outermost tracks. These platform tracks are in high demand as many express commuter and intercity trains make stops at this busy station. To access platforms, trains must cross over to the local tracks, which lowers speeds, adds travel time, and creates a bottleneck that limits capacity on the segment and can cause delays for both local and express services.
The state of Maryland and Amtrak aim to dramatically improve the functionality and passenger experience at BWI Marshall Airport Station while expanding the track capacity of the surrounding section of the Corridor. Proposed investments would construct a fourth track along a nine-mile stretch of the NEC from Grove Interlocking, south of BWI Marshall Airport, to Winans Interlocking at Halethorpe, MD. Improvements would include track upgrades north to Bridge Interlocking on the approach to Baltimore’s B&P Tunnels. With a Hanson to Grove Interlocking fourth track expansion, this project would help complete a full four-track railroad from Baltimore to just outside Washington. At BWI Marshall Airport Station, planned investments would include the construction of two new center-island platforms, enabling trains to make stops on all four tracks. These improvements would enable MARC and Amtrak to expand service while reducing delays. Plans also call for a new, larger station building to better handle the growing number of passengers and to upgrade the experience of using the station. In 2010, Maryland won a $9.4 million HSIPR grant to complete preliminary engineering and environmental analysis of both the fourth track and the station improvements.