North Carolina

Since 1977, the Rail Division has focused on the safe and efficient movement of people and goods on North Carolina’s railroads through freight, passenger and safety programs, supporting job creation and economic growth.
NCDOT is currently preparing a Comprehensive State Rail Plan (CSRP) that will define a vision for North Carolina's existing and future rail infrastructure, and identify a program of projects and services for the state's rail system that will provide quantifiable economic and quality-of-life benefits to residents, businesses and industries.
North Carolina Passenger Train Fast Facts:
·         A total of over 900,000 passengers boarded trains in North Carolina in 2011.
·         Train travel time between Raleigh and Charlotte has been reduced by over an hour since the service began in 1995.
·         North Carolina has 3,384 miles of railroad track and 14 passenger trains serving 16 cities daily.
·         Over the past 15 years, The N.C. Department of Transportation has invested about $300 million in the state's intercity passenger rail service, including renovation or construction of train stations, track work improvements and corridor preservation.
·         The 2013 federal fiscal year report shows that ridership on the Piedmont service increased by 4.7% to 170,266 and revenue increased 8.1% to over $3.3 million.
·         The 2013 federal fiscal year report shows that ridership on the Carolinian increased by 3.6% to 317,550 and revenue increased by 6.4% to over $19.8 million.
·         2013 was the fourth consecutive year of positive growth for both routes.
·         The NCDOT Rail Division is currently investing more than $520 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds to expand and improve the state-owned rail corridor between Raleigh and Charlotte and to add two additional daily round trips of the Piedmont service. The Piedmont Improvement Program will make travel safer and more reliable, enhance opportunities for greater job growth and commercial development and better connect the economic regions of Raleigh and Charlotte and the cities, towns and communities in between. These safety and capacity projects along the corridor will improve the corridor for all trains, freight and passenger.
·         The NCDOT Rail Division is evaluating operational and safety enhancements of using vehicle detection systems with dynamic exit gate clearance timing at 4-quadrant gated highway-rail crossings throughout the state.
·         The Rail Division recognizes the importance of “going green” and strives to embrace eco-friendly technology where available. For the past three years, they have been working with the North Carolina State University Environmental Engineering (NCSU EE) Department to study the effects of operating Piedmont passenger locomotives on biodiesel fuel, with the intention of demonstrating that NCDOT’s locomotives can be run on biodiesel fuel with no loss of performance and demonstrate using Particulate Emissions Measurement System (PEMS) technology that air quality is improved by reduced engine emissions when using biodiesel fuel.
·         Cary, Durham and Greensboro were among the Top Ten Stations in the nation.
o   Cary was ranked two and Durham was ranked third. Both Cary and Durham had an overall customer satisfaction index score of 93%.
o   Greensboro’s station made a strong showing, ranking eighth with a 91% rating.
o   All three stations were part of the Rail Division’s Station Improvement Program.