B&P Tunnel Replacement Program

The Frederick Douglass Tunnel is the centerpiece of the B&P Tunnel Replacement Program. The two new tubes, serving MARC and Amtrak customers, will be named in honor of Frederick Douglass. Frederick Douglass was a Maryland native and an early leader in the fight for the rights of women and minorities. He was also a frequent railroad passenger after escaping to his freedom by boarding a train in Baltimore.


The Existing B&P Tunnel

The B&P Tunnel, located in Baltimore, dates from the Civil War era. At nearly 150 years old, it is the oldest tunnel Amtrak inherited and a single point of failure for MARC’s busiest line (the Penn Line) and the Northeast Corridor (NEC). The 1.4-mile tunnel, connecting Baltimore’s Penn Station to Washington and Virginia, suffers from a variety of age-related issues such as excessive water infiltration, a deteriorating structure, and a sinking floor. There are no fire and life safety systems that help keep passengers safe in the event of emergencies, and excessive costly maintenance is required. Due to its age, delays are chronic — more than 10% of weekday trains are delayed, and delays occur on 99% of weekdays. The B&P Tunnel must be replaced to meet the needs of the 9 million MARC and Amtrak customers who rely on it annually.

New Tunnel Alignment

The B&P Tunnel Replacement Program (the Program) will modernize and transform a four-mile section of the Northeast Corridor. It includes two new high-capacity tubes for electrified passenger trains, new roadway and railroad bridges, new rail systems and track, and a new ADA-accessible West Baltimore MARC station.

Contact Us

For additional information about the B&P Tunnel Replacement Program, email info@bptunnel.com.

Additional Resources

The Federal Railroad Administration has issued a Record of Decision (ROD) for the B&P Tunnel Project. In making its decision, FRA considered the information and analysis included in the Draft and Final Environmental Impact Statements (DEIS & FEIS) for the project and public and agency comments.

FRA has prepared this ROD in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. § 4321 et seq.), the Council of Environmental Quality (CEQ) NEPA Regulations (40 C.F.R. Parts 1500-1508), the FRA Procedures for Considering Environmental Impacts (64 Federal Register 28545 [May 26, 1999]), and FRA’s Update to NEPA Implementing Procedures (78 Federal Register Part 2713 [January 14, 2013]).

To illustrate Amtrak’s commitment to Community Engagement the Outreach team will develop and maintain an Engagement Schedule to work with the community to identify Investment Priorities, solicit feedback on program activities and to share updates on program activities.