Skip Top Navigation

Rail - Amtrak Cascades New Locomotives

status planning design
Amtrak Cascades route map


July 2014

  • WSDOT joined other state partners to develop specifications for new rail equipment for its Amtrak Cascades service.
  • On Aug. 8, 2013, The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) invited U.S. manufacturers to submit bids (220 pdf) to produce high-performance, next-generation diesel-electric locomotives.
  • The new fleet, expected to be in operation by fall 2017, will provide flexibility to meet customer demands.

Why is WSDOT purchasing new locomotives?
In order to meet this ever-increasing demand for more rail service and boost the rail manufacturing industry, Washington state is purchasing new locomotives, designed and built in the United States.

This "next generation" rail equipment will feature better fuel efficiency, added passenger comfort, travel conveniences and safety upgrades.

The new locomotives will accommodate two additional round trips between Seattle and Portland.

The End Result
The new locomotives will have higher accelerations rates and top speeds, lower emission rates, on-board positive train control, and be more reliable.

Project Benefits

  • Faster, more frequent Amtrak Cascades service with schedule reliability along the I-5 corridor.
  • Lower emission rates.
  • A boost the rail manufacturing industry, as Washington state is purchasing new locomotives, designed and built in the United States.

What is the project timeline?

  • Request for Proposals – Aug. 8, 2013
  • Proposal award – February 2014
  • Environmental approval and final design – Summer 2014
  • Fabrication and assembly – Summer 2015
  • Testing and certification – Summer 2016
  • Final delivery – Spring 2017

Financial Information

Washington state is delivering nearly $800 million in federally funded rail corridor improvements using high speed rail grants administered by the Federal Railroad Administration. The purchase of new locomotives is one of those projects.

  • American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) - $46.7 million
  • Total Funding From All Sources - $46.7 million

How can I get more information?
WSDOT Rail Division
PO Box 47407
Olympia, WA 98504-7407
Phone: 360-705-7900

back to top