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MARC Anticipates Some Penn Line Relief Today

On Thursday: MARC says it is planning normal service on the Penn Line, but riders should anticipate delays of 15 to 20 minutes between Baltimore and Odenton.

MARC riders are taking a hard hit this week. Today, it was the water main break along the Penn Line, but for those of you who got to work this morning, there may be some relief for late-afternoon trips home.

Right now, MARC is operating train service between Union Station and Odenton, but using buses to link Odenton with Penn Station in Baltimore. Here's what the MTA says about the rest of the afternoon:

Train 426 out of Union Station at 3:27 p.m. probably will operate only to Odenton, arriving at 3:56 p.m., or so. Then that train will become MARC train 535 from Odenton to Union Station.

Amtrak, which operates its own service and MARC on the Penn Line, has advised MARC that through service out of Union Station may resume with Train 530 leaving at 4:24 p.m. and making all regular stops. Trains following that one would also make all their regular stops. But Train 446 (10:30 p.m. from Union Station) will not operate tonight.

MARC now expects Trains 443 (7:25 Baltimore departure) to operate. But in addition, MARC will run a bus shuttle from Penn Station in Baltimore stopping only at BWI, Odenton and New Carrollton stations at 4, 5 and 6 p.m. today.

But contrary to previous information, MARC said, Train 445 (9:15 p.m. from Baltimore) will not operate tonight. Amtrak maintenance crews will be making repairs on the tracks.

Metro is honoring MARC tickets this afternoon and evening.

Here's a link to MARC's train tracker service. Here's a link to the regular Penn Line schedule. This one shows the Camden Line schedule, in case that's an option for you.

This morning's water main break was beyond the control of either Amtrak or MARC. But did riders find that the emergency plan was adequate? And how was communication as the incident evolved?

By Robert Thomson  |  April 29, 2009; 1:12 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Commuting , transit  
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1) I'd like to know why trains turned around at Odenton and not BWI if no trains could run south of Halethorpe?
2) Two announcements at BWI platform stated there was a water main break SOUTH of BWI.
3) Why do I get quicker and better updates by calling my wife to check my email than I do from an announcement at the station?

Posted by: GlenBurnie | April 29, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

If I had to take a guess for why trains are stopping at Odenton and not BWI, it'd probably be related to the switch north of Odenton. Trains were running on one track through Halethorpe, at least at around noon, and would have to stay on that one track all the way down to the switch at Odenton. If trains were to go to BWO they would need to be on one of the platform tracks to avoid confusion, probably the normal northbound track, and use that same track to come all the way back to Odenton to cross back.

It's just easier logistically to turn the trains around at Odenton

Posted by: Mainland | April 29, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

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