Amtrak has announced it is doing an extensive refresh of its train interiors on the entire Acela Express fleet, which travels along the Northeast Corridor between Boston and Washington, DC.
The Acela Express refresh is a 14-month program for all of its 20 trainsets, which includes 100 Amtrak cars and 6,080 total seats.
Each trainset will be refreshed individually with new cushions and covers for all business class and first-class seats, new carpet for the aisle runner and a deep clean. The total investment is valued at more than $4 million.
The refresh will start this month and proceed through June 2019. Amtrak schedules will not change due to the refresh.
Materials from the existing Acela cushions and covers will be reused, recycled and turned into carpet padding, while the leather will be upcycled and converted into handbags, wallets and other consumer goods.
The refresh will occur in advance of the debut of the next generation Acela trainsets Amtrak announced in August 2016, which will provide 40 percent more trains, one-third more passenger seats with the same personal space and high-end comfort, as well as more service, better amenities and a smoother ride.
The first trainset prototype will be ready for testing in 2019, and will enter service in early 2021. All trainsets in the current fleet will be retired in early 2022.
I’m not sure why they’re bothering with the refresh when those trains will be retired in four years, but I am glad they’re recycling the materials.
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