Amtrak Acela Express near Old Saybrook, Connecticut
Norfolk Southern Railway
Providence and Worcester Railroad
|Termini||Boston South Station
Washington, D.C Union Station
|No. of tracks||2-4+|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
|Operating speed||150 mph (240 km/h) (Acela)
135 mph (217 km/h) (other)
The Northeast Corridor (NEC) is a fully electrified railway line that serves the Northeast megalopolis of the United States. Owned primarily by Amtrak, it runs from Boston through New York and Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., with branches serving other cities.
The NEC, which closely parallels Interstate 95 for most of its length, is the busiest passenger rail line in the United States by ridership and service frequency. The Acela Express, which entered service in 2000, is the only high-speed train in North America; it runs up to 150 mph (241 km/h) and takes 2 hours, 48 minutes to travel the 224.6 miles between New York and Washington.
The NEC is a cooperative venture between Amtrak and various state agencies. Amtrak owns the track between Washington and New Rochelle, New York, a northern suburb of New York City. The segment from New Rochelle to New Haven is owned by the states of New York and Connecticut; Metro-North Railroad commuter trains operate there. Amtrak owns the tracks north of New Haven to the border between Rhode Island and Massachusetts. The final segment from the border north to Boston is owned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
In 2006, NEC had several high-profile electric-power failures that delayed Amtrak and commuter trains up to five hours. Railroad officials blamed Amtrak's funding woes for the deterioration of the track and power supply system, which in places is almost a hundred years old. These problems have decreased in recent years after tracks and power systems were repaired and improved.
Major stations 
Station stops 
- Amtrak lines: AE=Acela Express, AD=Adirondack, CD=Cardinal, CL=Carolinian, CPL=Capitol Limited, CS=Crescent, EAE=Ethan Allen Express, ES=Empire Service, KS=Keystone, LS=Lake Shore Limited, ML=Maple Leaf, NR=Northeast Regional, PA=Pennsylvanian, PL=Palmetto, SM=Silver Meteor, SS=Silver Star, VT=Vermonter (note that not all trains of that designation necessarily stop at all marked stations)
- MARC: Served by MARC Penn Line trains.
- MBTA: Served by MBTA Providence/Stoughton Line, Franklin Line, Needham Line, and / or Framingham/Worcester Line trains.
- MNR: Served by MTA Metro-North Railroad New Haven Line, Danbury Branch, New Canaan Branch, and / or Waterbury Branch trains.
- NJT: Served by New Jersey Transit Atlantic City Line, Montclair-Boonton Line, Morristown Line, Gladstone Branch, North Jersey Coast Line, and / or NEC trains.
- LIRR: Served by Long Island Rail Road City Terminal Zone portion of Main Line trains to Penn Station.
- SEPTA: Served by SEPTA Regional Rail Airport Line, Wilmington/Newark Line, Media/Elwyn Line, Trenton Line, and / or Chestnut Hill West Line trains.
- SLE: Served by Shore Line East trains.
|MA||228.7||Boston||South Station||AE NR LS||MBTA||MBTA Red Line, Old Colony Lines, Greenbush Line, Framingham/Worcester Line, Fairmount Line|
|227.6||Back Bay Station||AE NR LS||MBTA||MBTA Orange Line; split with Framingham/Worcester Line|
|226.5||Ruggles||MBTA||MBTA Orange Line|
|223.7||Forest Hills||MBTA||MBTA Orange Line; split with Needham Line|
|219.2||Readville||MBTA||MBTA Fairmount Line; split with Franklin Line. NEC platforms only used in emergencies|
|217.3||Westwood||Route 128||AE NR||MBTA||Park and ride|
|213.9||Canton||Canton Junction||MBTA||Split with Stoughton branch|
|190.8||state line Massachusetts / Rhode Island|
|177.3||Warwick||T. F. Green Airport||MBTA|
|141.1||state line Rhode Island / Connecticut|
|122.9||New London||New London||AE NR||SLE|
|105.1||Old Saybrook||Old Saybrook||NR||SLE|
|72.9||Division Post – Metro-North Railroad / Amtrak|
|72.7||New Haven||State Street Station||MNR||SLE|
|72.3||Union Station||AE NR VT||MNR||SLE||Amtrak Shuttle|
|69.4||West Haven||West Haven||MNR||not yet open|
|59.0||Stratford||Stratford||MNR||MNRR Waterbury Branch|
|41.0||South Norwalk||MNR||MNRR Danbury Branch|
|33.1||Stamford||Stamford||AE NR VT||MNR||SLE||MNRR New Canaan Branch|
|26.1||state line Connecticut / New York|
|NY||25.7||Port Chester||Port Chester||MNR|
|16.6||New Rochelle||New Rochelle||NR||MNR||Metro-North to Grand Central|
|3.2||New York City||Sunnyside||LIRR||Not yet open|
|0.0||Penn Station||AE AD CD CL CS EAE ES KS LS ML NR PA PL SM SS VT||LIRR||NJT||LIRR: Trains to Long Island
NJT: Trains to New Jersey
NYCS: A C E trains at Eighth Avenue,
1 2 3 trains at Seventh Avenue
|1.2||state line New York / New Jersey|
|NJ||5.0||Secaucus||Secaucus Junction||NJT||NJT to Hoboken and northern New Jersey|
|6.0||Secaucus / Harrison||Portal Bridge||NJT||Active moveable bridge over Hackensack River|
|7.3||Harrison||Swift||NJT||Junction with NJT Kearny Connection to NJT Morris & Essex Line to Dover, Hackettstown & Gladstone and Montclair-Boonton Line to Montclair Heights, Dover and Hackettstown|
|8.5||Hudson||NJT||Former location of Manhattan Transfer; Current junction between NJT Waterfront Connection and Amtrak NEC Penn Main Line|
|8.8||Hudson Yard||NJT||Amtrak / NJT Yard|
|9.8||Newark||Dock||Active moveable bridge over Passaic River|
|10.0||Penn Station||AE CD CL CS KS NR PA PL SM SS VT||NJT||Newark City Subway, PATH|
|11.1||Cliff||Former Newark (South Street) station; consists of two crossovers that didn't fit at Hunter|
|11.7||Hunter||Junction for NJT Raritan Valley Line to High Bridge & Raritan; Conrail Lehigh Line|
|12.6||Newark Airport||KS NR||NJT||AirTrain|
|13.5||Lane||Junction for Conrail Greenville and Passaic & Harsimus Branches|
|15.4||Elizabeth (Broad Street)||NJT|
|16.1||South Elizabeth||Closed passenger station|
|20.1||Rahway||North Rahway||NJT||Closed passenger station|
|21.0||Union||Junction with NJT North Jersey Coast Line to Bay Head.|
|22.8||Woodbridge||Colonia||Closed passenger station|
|24.0||Iselin||Closed passenger station|
|24.6||Metropark||AE KS NR VT||NJT||Park and ride|
|32.7||New Brunswick||New Brunswick||KS NR||NJT|
|34.2||County||Junction Conrail Millstone Running Track|
|34.4||North Brunswick||Jersey Avenue||NJT||Park and ride|
|36.8||Adams||Closed passenger Station|
|39.9||South Brunswick||Deans||Closed passenger Station|
|42.4||Monmouth Junction||Closed passenger Station|
|42.6||Midway||Interlocking plant; junction with Conrail Jamesburg Branch|
|48.3||Princeton Junction||Nassau||Junction with NJT Princeton Branch.|
|48.4||Princeton Junction||KS NR||NJT||NJT Princeton Branch to Princeton|
|-||Hamilton Township (Mercer County)||Division Post – New Jersey / Philadelphia Divisions|
|55.8||Millham||closed Interlocking Plant|
|57.8||Trenton||Fair||Junction for Belvedere-Delaware Secondary Track; Former junction for Bordentown Secondary Track; (See NJT River Line); Current Amtrak Division Post New York and Philadelphia Divisions|
|58.1||Trenton||AE CD CL CS KS NR PA SM SS VT||SEPTA||NJT||NJT River Line to Camden|
|59.2||state line New Jersey / Pennsylvania|
|PA||59.6||Morrisville||Morrisville||Closed passenger station|
|59.7||Morris||Junction for Norfolk Southern Trenton Cutoff and Morrisville Yard|
|73.7||Cornwells Heights||Cornwells Heights||KS NR||SEPTA|
|82.8||Frankford Junction||Closed station; junction with Atlantic City Express Service and Atlantic City Line to Atlantic City|
|86.0||North Philadelphia||KS NR||SEPTA|
|ZOO Interlocking||Split with Keystone Corridor|
|1.5||30th Street Station||AE CD CL CS KS NR PA PL SM SS VT||SEPTA||NJT||New Jersey Transit Atlantic City Line, all SEPTA commuter rail lines
Market-Frankford Line, Subway-Surface Trolley Lines
|6.5||Sharon Hill||Curtis Park||SEPTA|
|9.7||Prospect Park||Prospect Park||SEPTA|
|10.4||Ridley Park||Ridley Park||SEPTA|
|13.4||Chester||Chester Transportation Center||SEPTA|
|14.4||Lamokin Street Station||SEPTA||Flag stop, closed in 2003|
|15.5||Highland Avenue Station||SEPTA|
|16.7||Marcus Hook||Marcus Hook||SEPTA|
|18.2||state line Pennsylvania / Delaware|
|26.8||Wilimington||Wilmington||AE CD CL CS NR PL SM SS VT||SEPTA|
|41.5||state line Delaware / Maryland|
|84.0||Middle River||Martin State Airport||MARC|
|95.7||Baltimore||Penn Station||AE CD CL CS NR PL SM SS VT||MARC||Maryland Transit Administration Light Rail|
|106.3||Linthicum||BWI Airport Rail Station||AE NR VT||MARC|
|120.5||Bowie||Bowie Interlocking||Wye junction with Pope's Creek Subdivision (CSX)|
|127.0||New Carrollton||New Carrollton||NR VT||MARC||Orange Line (Washington Metro), park and ride|
|128.8||Landover||Landover Interlocking||Junction with CSX Landover Subdivision|
|131.6||state line Maryland / District of Columbia|
|Washington||C Interlocking||Junction with CSX Capital Subdivision and Metropolitan Subdivision|
|0.0||Union Station||AE CPL CD CL CS NR PL SM SS VT||MARC||VRE||VRE commuter rail, Metro Red Line, Amtrak trains to Virginia, Chicago, New Orleans, Miami, MARC commuter Rail|
Grade crossings 
The New York to New Haven line had long been completely grade-separated. The last grade crossings between Washington and New York were eliminated in the 1980s. Most crossings between New Haven and Boston were replaced in the late 1990s with bridges and underpasses in preparation for electrification.
The remaining grade crossings are along a part of the line that hugs the shore of Fishers Island Sound. Without these crossings many waterfront communities and businesses would be inaccessible from land. Except for three grade crossings near New London Union Station, all have four-quadrant gates without exit gate delays and induction loops to alert Amtrak personnel about trapped vehicles.
From east to west, the crossings are:
- Palmer Street (Pawcatuck): Connects the Pawcatuck residential neighborhood to Mechanic Street along the Pawcatuck River.
- Elihu Island Road: Access to Elihu Island
- Walker's Dock: Access to this small marina
- Wamphassuc Crossing: Access to the upscale residences on Wamphassuc Point
- Latimer Point Road: Access to the summer cottages on Latimer Point
- Broadway (Mystic): Access to the northbound platform at the Mystic Depot, and to marinas that line the north shore of Mystic Harbor.
- School Street: Provides access to marinas and residences on Willow Point in West Mystic. This was the first quad-gate installation in the United States, dating from 1998.
- New London:
- Miner Lane: Access to a few residences and industrial businesses.
In September 2005, a southbound Acela Express crashed into a car at Miner Lane, killing the driver (a Miner Lane resident) and her two grandchildren. Amtrak said the woman had driven underneath the gates; her family said the quad-gate closed after the car entered, trapping it in the path of the train.
Current rail service 
Intercity passenger services 
In 2003, Amtrak accounted for about 14% of intercity trips between the cities served by the NEC and its branches (the rest were taken by airline, automobile, or bus). A 2011 study estimated that in 2010 Amtrak carried 6% of the Boston-Washington traffic, compared to 80% for automobiles, 8-9% for intercity bus, and 5% for airlines. Amtrak's share of passenger traffic between New York City and Boston has grown from 20 percent to 54 percent since 2001, and 75 percent of public-transport travelers between New York City and Washington, D.C., go by train.
These Amtrak and other long-distance trains serve NEC stations:
- Acela Express: high-speed rail Boston-Washington, D.C.
- Adirondack: New York-Montreal via Empire Corridor.
- Capitol Limited: Washington, D.C.-Chicago
- Cardinal: Washington, D.C.-Chicago (Wednesdays, Fridays, Sundays only).
- Carolinian: New York-Charlotte, North Carolina.
- Crescent: New York-New Orleans.
- Empire Service- local service between Niagara Falls via Empire Corridor; most trains terminate at Albany-Rensselaer, New York, with two trains continuing to Niagara Falls
- Ethan Allen Express: Rutland, Vermont-New York
- Keystone Service: - Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-New York
- Lake Shore Limited: Chicago-New York/Boston via Empire Corridor
- Maple Leaf: Toronto-New York via Empire Corridor
- New Haven-Springfield Shuttle: New Haven-Springfield, Massachusetts via New Haven-Springfield Line
- Northeast Regional: local service along NEC between Boston/Springfield/New York-Washington D.C./Richmond/Newport News/Lynchburg, Virginia
- Palmetto: Savannah, Georgia-New York
- Pennsylvanian Pittsburgh-New York via NEC and Keystone Corridor
- Silver Meteor: Miami, Florida-New York
- Silver Star: Miami/Tampa, Florida-New York
- Vermonter: St. Albans, Vermont-Washington, D.C. via NEC and New Haven-Springfield Line
Commuter rail 
In addition to Amtrak, several commuter rail agencies operate passenger service using the NEC tracks:
- Providence/Stoughton Line: Wickford Junction-Boston
- Franklin Line: Hyde Park-Boston.
- Needham Line: Ruggles-Boston
- Framingham/Worcester Line: Back Bay Station-Boston
- New Haven Line: New Rochelle, New York-New Haven, Connecticut
- Danbury Branch: Norwalk-Danbury, Connecticut
- New Canaan Branch: Stamford-New Canaan, Connecticut
- Waterbury Branch: Stratford-Waterbury, Connecticut.
New Jersey Transit (NJT) 
- Atlantic City Line: 30th Street Station-Frankford Junction
- Northeast Corridor: Trenton-New York
- North Jersey Coast Line: Rahway-New York
- Morristown Line, Gladstone Branch, Montclair-Boonton Line: Secaucus Junction-New York
Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) 
- Airport Line: 30th Street Station-Southwest Philadelphia
- Wilmington/Newark Line: Newark, Delaware-Philadelphia
- Media/Elwyn Line: 30th Street Station-Arsenal Junction
- Trenton Line: Philadelphia-Trenton, New Jersey
- Chestnut Hill West Line: 30th Street Station-North Philadelphia Station
Freight services 
Freight trains operate on parts of the NEC through trackage rights. The Norfolk Southern Railway operates over the line south of Philadelphia. CSX Transportation has rights from New York to New Haven; in Massachusetts; and in Maryland from Landover, where its Landover Subdivision joins the NEC, and Bowie, where its Pope's Creek Subdivision leaves it. Between Philadelphia and New York, Conrail operates as a local switching and terminal company for CSX and Norfolk Southern. (See Conrail Shared Assets Operations.) The Providence and Worcester Railroad operates local freight service from New Haven into Rhode Island and has incidental trackage rights from New Haven to New York.
The Northeast Corridor was built by several railroads between the 1830s and 1917. The route was later owned by two railroads:
- New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad (NH): Boston-New York
- Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR): New York-Washington.
Boston-New York 
- Boston-Providence: Boston and Providence Railroad opened 1835, partially realigned in 1847 and in 1899. Became part of the Old Colony Railroad in 1888.
- Providence-Stonington: New York, Providence and Boston Railroad opened 1837; partially realigned 1848.
- Stonington-New Haven: New Haven, New London and Stonington Railroad opened 1852-1889, realigned in New Haven, 1894.
- New Haven-New Rochelle: New York and New Haven Railroad opened 1849.
- New Rochelle-Port Morris: Harlem River and Port Chester Railroad opened 1873.
- Port Morris-Sunnyside Yard: New York Connecting Railroad (joint venture between NH and PRR): opened 1917.
New York-Washington, D.C. 
- Sunnyside Yard-Manhattan Transfer: Pennsylvania Tunnel and Terminal Railroad opened 1910.
- Manhattan Transfer-Trenton: United New Jersey Railroad and Canal Company opened 1834-1839, 1841; partially realigned 1863 and 1870.
- Trenton-Frankford Junction: Philadelphia and Trenton Railroad opened 1834; partially realigned 1911.
- Frankford Junction-Zoo Tower: Connecting Railway opened 1867.
- Zoo Tower-Grays Ferry Bridge: Junction Railroad opened 1863-1866.
- Grays Ferry-Bayview: Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad opened 1837-1838, 1866, 1906.
- Bayview Yard-Baltimore Union Station: Union Railroad opened 1873.
- Bayview Yard-Baltimore Union Station: Baltimore and Potomac Rail Road opened 1872-1873.
- Landover-Washington, D.C.: Magruder Branch opened 1907, 1905.
Electrification 1905-1938 
New York section 
The New York Central Railroad (NYC) began planning electrification between Grand Central Terminal and the split at Mott Haven after the opening of the first electrified urban rail terminal in 1900, the Gare d'Orsay in Paris, France. Electricity was in use on some branch lines of the NYNH&H for interurban streetcars via third rail or trolley wire. An accident that killed 17 people on January 8, 1902 was blamed on smoke from steam locomotives; the resulting outcry led to a push for electric operation in Manhattan.
The first section was the Park Avenue Tunnel of the New York and Harlem Railroad, part of the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad (NYC) to its Grand Central Terminal in New York, and also used by the NH via trackage rights.
The NH announced in 1905 that it would electrify its main line from New York to Stamford, Connecticut. Along with the construction of the new Grand Central Terminal, opened in 1912, the NYC electrified its lines, beginning on December 11, 1906 with suburban multiple unit service to High Bridge on the Hudson Line. Electric locomotives began serving Grand Central February 13, 1907, and all NYC passenger service into Grand Central was electrified July 1. NH electrification began July 24 to New Rochelle, August 5 to Port Chester and October 6, 1907 the rest of the way to Stamford. Steam trains last operated into Grand Central on June 30, 1908, after which all NH passenger trains into Manhattan were electrified. On June 22, 1914 the NH electrification was extended to New Haven, which was the terminus of electrified service for over 80 years.
At the same time the PRR was building its Pennsylvania Station and electrified approaches, served by the PRR's lines in New Jersey and the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR). LIRR electric service began in 1905 on the Atlantic Branch from downtown Brooklyn past Jamaica, and in June 1910 on the branch to Long Island City, part of the main line to Penn Station. Penn Station opened September 8, 1910 for LIRR trains and November 27 for the PRR; trains of both railroads were powered by DC electricity from a third rail. PRR trains changed engines (electric to/from steam) at Manhattan Transfer; passengers could also transfer there to H&M trains to downtown Manhattan.
On July 29, 1911 NH began electric service on its Harlem River Branch, a suburban branch that would become a main line with the completion of the New York Connecting Railroad and its Hell Gate Bridge. The bridge opened on April 1, 1917, but was operated by steam with an engine change at Sunnyside Yard east of Penn Station until 1918.
Electrification of the portion north of New Haven to Providence and Boston had been planned by the NH, and authorized by the company's board of directors shortly before the U.S. entered World War I. This plan was not carried out because of the war and the company's financial problems.
New York to Washington electrification 
In 1905, the PRR began to electrify its suburban lines at Philadelphia, an effort that eventually led to 11kV, 25Hz AC catenary from New York and Washington. Electric service began September 11, 1915, with multiple unit trains west to Paoli on the PRR Main Line (now the Keystone Corridor). Electric service to Chestnut Hill (now the Chestnut Hill West Line), including a stretch of the NEC, began March 30, 1918. Local electric service to Wilmington, Delaware, on the NEC began September 30, 1928, and to Trenton, New Jersey, on June 29, 1930.
Electrified service between Exchange Place, the Jersey City terminal, and New Brunswick, New Jersey began on December 8, 1932, including the extension of Penn Station electric service from Manhattan Transfer. On January 16, 1933, the rest of the electrification between New Brunswick and Trenton opened, giving a fully electrified line between New York and Wilmington. Trains to Washington began running under electricity to Wilmington on February 12, with the engine change moved from Manhattan Transfer to Wilmington. The same was done on April 9 for trains running west from Philadelphia, with the change point moved to Paoli.
In 1933, the electrification south of Wilmington was stalled by the Great Depression, but the PRR got a loan from Public Works Administration to resume work. The tunnels at Baltimore were rebuilt, and electric service between New York and Washington began February 10, 1935. On April 7, the electrification of passenger trains was complete, with 639 daily trains: 191 hauled by locomotives and the other 448 under multiple-unit power. New York-Washington electric freight service began May 20 after the electrification of freight lines in New Jersey and Washington. Extensions to Potomac Yard across the Potomac River from Washington, as well as several freight branches along the way, were electrified in 1937 and 1938. The Potomac Yard retained its electrification until 1981.
In the 1930s, PRR equipped the New York-Washington line with Pulse code cab signaling. Between 1998 and 2003, this system was overlaid with an Alstom Advanced Civil Speed Enforcement System, using track-mounted transponders similar to the Balises of the modern European Train Control System. The ACSES will enable Amtrak to implement Positive train control to comply with the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008.
Reorganization, bankruptcy and Amtrak 
In 1969, PRR merged with its former rival, the NYC, to form the Penn Central (PC), which then absorbed the NH and brought the entire Washington-Boston corridor under the control of a single company.
On September 21, 1970, all New York-Boston trains except the Turboservice were rerouted into Penn Station from Grand Central; the Turboservice was moved on February 1, 1971.
Amtrak began operations in 1971.
In 1971, various states took control of portions of the NEC for their commuter transportation authorities. In January, the state of New York bought and the state of Connecticut leased from Penn Central their sections of the New Haven Line, between Woodlawn, New York, and New Haven, Connecticut. The line was later operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. In the same month, the State of Massachusetts bought the Attleboro/Stoughton Line in Massachusetts, later operated by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.
In 1973, the Regional Rail Reorganization Act opened the way for Amtrak to buy sections of the NEC not already been sold to these commuter transportation authorities. These purchases by Amtrak were controversial at the time, and the Department of Transportation blocked the transaction and withheld purchase funds for several months until Amtrak granted it control over reconstruction of the corridor.
In February 1975, the Preliminary System Plan for Conrail proposed to stop running freight trains on the NEC between Groton, Connecticut, and Hillsgrove, Rhode Island, but this clause was rejected the following month by the U.S. Railway Association.
By April 1976, Amtrak owned the entire NEC except for the section between New Haven and the Rhode Island/Massachusetts state line, which were sold to the Providence and Worcester Railroad; those rights remained until the 1999 breakup of Conrail, when they were split between the Norfolk Southern Railway to the south and CSX Transportation to the north.
Today, Amtrak operates and maintains the portion in Massachusetts. The line from New Haven to New Rochelle, New York, is operated by the Metro-North Railroad, which has hindered the establishment of high-speed service.
Improvement Project: 1976-1980 
In 1976, Congress authorized an overhaul of the system between Washington and Boston. Called the Northeast Corridor Improvement Project (NECIP), it included safety improvements, modernization of the signaling system by General Railway Signal, and new Centralized Electrification and Traffic Control (CETC) control centers by Chrysler at Philadelphia, New York and Boston. It allowed more trains to run faster and closer together, and set the stage for later high-speed operation. NECIP also introduced the AEM-7 locomotive, which lowered travel times between cities and became the most successful engine on the Corridor. The NECIP set travel time goals of 2 hours and 40 minutes between Washington and New York, and 3 hours and 40 minutes between Boston and New York. These goals were not met because of the low level of funding provided by the Reagan Administration and Congress in the 1980s.
A project for electrification between New Haven and Boston was included in a bill signed by President Gerald Ford in 1976 but it stalled after 1980 because of opposition from the Reagan Administration.
All grade crossings on the line have been eliminated between New York and Washington since the mid-1980s. Eleven grade crossings remain in Connecticut.
High-speed rail in the 1990s 
In the 1990s, Amtrak upgraded the NEC north of New York to ready it for the higher-speed Acela Express trains. Dubbed the Northeast High Speed Rail Improvement Program (NHRIP), the effort eliminated grade crossings, rebuilt some bridges, and modified some curves. Concrete railroad ties replaced wood ties, and heavier continuous welded rail (CWR) was laid down.
In 1996, Amtrak began installing electrification gear along the 157 miles (253 kilometres) of track between New Haven and Boston. The infrastructure included a new overhead catenary wire made of high-strength silver-bearing copper, specified by Amtrak and later patented by Phelps Dodge Specialty Copper Products of Elizabeth, New Jersey. Service with electric locomotives began on January 31, 2000.
Acela Express service began on December 11, 2000. Travel time by Acela is about three and a half hours between Boston and New York, and two hours and forty-five minutes between New York to Washington D.C.
As of 2013, the Federal Railroad Administration is drawing up a master plan for developing the corridor through 2040, taking into account various projects and proposals by various agency and advocacy groups. The plan is to be complete in spring 2015. 
"A vision for High-Speed Rail" 
In October 2010, Amtrak released "A vision for High-Speed Rail on the Northeast Corridor", an aspirational proposal for dedicated high-speed rail tracks between Washington, D.C., and Boston. Projected to cost about $117 billion (2010 dollars), the project would allow speeds of 220 mph, reducing travel time from New York to Washington to 96 minutes (including a stop in Philadelphia) and from Boston to New York to 84 minutes.
The proposed alignment would closely follow the existing NEC south of New York City; north of the city, several different alignments would be studied. One option would parallel Interstates 684, 84, and 90 through Danbury, Waterbury, and Hartford, Connecticut; another would follow the existing shoreline route (paralleling Interstate 95); a third would run along Long Island and a new bridge or tunnel across Long Island Sound to Connecticut.
Gateway Project 
In February 2011, Amtrak announced plans for the Gateway Project between Newark Penn Station and New York Penn Station. The planned project would create a high-speed alignment across the New Jersey Meadowlands and under the Hudson River, including the replacement of the Portal Bridge, a bottleneck. It is projected to cost $14.5 billion and be completed in 2025.
Harold interlocking 
In May 2011, a $294.7-million federal grant was awarded to fix congestion at Harold Interlocking, the USA's second-busiest rail junction after Sunnyside Yard. The work will lay tracks to the New York Connecting Railroad right of way, allowing Amtrak trains arriving from or bound for New England to avoid NJT and LIRR trains.    Financing for the project was jeopardized in July 2011 by the House of Representatives, which voted to divert the funding to unrelated projects. The project is currently funded by FRA and the MTA. 
New Brunswick-Trenton high-speed upgrade 
In August 2011, Congress obligated $450 million to a six-year project to add capacity on one of the busiest segments on the NEC in New Jersey. The project is designed to upgrade electrical power, signal systems and catenary wires on a 24 miles (39 km) section between New Brunswick and Trenton to improve reliability, increase speeds up to 160 mph (260 km/h), and support more frequent high-speed service.
Replacement of bridge over Hutchinson River 
Amtrak has applied for $15 million for the environmental impact studies and preliminary engineering design to examine replacement options for the more than 100-year-old, low-level movable rail bridge (just west of Pelham Bridge) over the Hutchinson River in The Bronx. The goal is for a new bridge to support expanded service and speeds up to 110 mph (177 km/h).
See also 
- Bureau of Transportation Statistics, U.S. Department of Transportation (2005-11). "Transportation Statistics Annual Report" (PDF). Retrieved 2007-02-18.
- N.Y. to D.C., 96 mins., $117 billion, CNN Money, November 2nd 2010.
- "A vision for High-Speed Rail in the Northeast Corridor". Amtrak. 2010-09-01.
- "Still No Answers in May Amtrak Power Outage". WNYC. June 22, 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-13.
- "Inside Amtrak: Projects". Amtrak. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
- Tom Baldwin (June 23, 2006). "Amtrak: Cause of power outage unknown". Courier-Post. Retrieved 2006-11-13.[dead link]
- Larraneta, Izaskun E. (8 December 2005). "Train crash victims' family seeks preservation of evidence". New London Day. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
- Congressional Budget Office. "The Past and Future of U.S. Passenger Rail Service," September 2003.
- O'Toole, Randal (29 June 2011). "Intercity Buses: The Forgotten Mode". Policy Analysis (680).
- Nixon, Ron. (2012, August 16.) Trading Planes for Trains: Riders Weary of Patdowns and Delays Set Records for Amtrak. The New York Times, p. B1
- Report of the Board of Railroad Commissioners, February 15, 1911, page 408
- "P.R.R. WILL SPEND $77,000,000 AT ONCE; Atterbury Outlines Projects Under PWA Loan Giving Year's Work to 25,000. TO EXTEND ELECTRIC LINE Sees Buying Power Restored and Industry Stimulated by Wide Building Program", The New York Times, January 31, 1934, retrieved 2012-08-08
- 'Acses to speed NE Corridor, Railway Gazette International, 1 September 1998, http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/single-view/view/acses-to-speed-ne-corridor.html
- William D. Middleton (December 1999). "Passenger rail in the 20th Century". Archived from the original on 2007-05-04. Retrieved 2006-11-13.
- "A loss for Amtrak is Coleman's Gain." Business Week, 1976-09-13, p. 36.
- United States Railway Association, Washington, D.C. (1975-07-26). Final System Plan for Restructuring Railroads in the Northeast and Midwest Region pursuant to the Regional Rail Reorganization Act of 1973. ("FSP"):
Vol. 1. Vol. 2
- U.S. Congress. Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act of 1976, Pub. L. 94-210, 90 Stat. 31, 45 U.S.C. § 801. 1976-02-05. Sometimes referred to as the "4R Act."
- USDOT. "NECIP Redirection Study." January 1979. p. 1.
- NEC Master Plan Working Group. "NEC Infrastructure Master Plan." May 2010. pp. 19-20.
- NEC FUTURE
- "Amtrak Releases Concept for 220 mph Train Along Northeast Corridor". AASHTO Journal. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- "N.Y. to D.C., 96 mins., $117 billion". CNN Money. 2010-11-02.
- "Amtrak touts Northeast Corridor needs as HSR gathering looms". Railway Age. July 9, 2012. Retrieved July 10, 2012.
- "Gateway Project" (PDF). Amtrak. February 2011. Retrieved 2011-02-07.
- "HAROLD interlocking (New York City)". wikimapia.org. Retrieved 2011-05-13.
- "Maloney Hails Federal Grant to Ease Amtrak Delays in NYC, Spur High-Speed Rail in NE Corridor - $294.7 Million Grant to Improve "Harold Interlocking", a Delay-Plagued Junction For Trains in the NE Corridor". May 9, 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-13.
- Colvin, Jill (May 9, 2011). "New York Awarded $350 Million for High-Speed Rail Projects". DNAinfo.com. Retrieved 2011-05-13.
- "House Vote Jeopardizes Key Northeast Rail Projects". Back on Track: Northeast. The Business Alliance for Northeast Mobility. July 20, 2011. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
- Schned, Dan (August 24, 2011). "U.S. DOT Obligates $745 Million to Northeast Corridor Rail Projects". America 2050. Retrieved 2011-11-24.
- Frassinelli, Mike (Monday, May 9, 2011), "Feds steer $450M to N.J. for high-speed rail", The Star Ledger, retrieved 2011-05-13
- Thorbourne, Ken (May 9, 2011), "Amtrak to receive nearly $450 million in high speed rail funding", The Jersey Journal, retrieved 2011-05-13
- McGeehan, Patrick (May 9, 2011), scp=2&sq=Ray%20Lahood&st=cse "Florida's rejected rail funds flow north", The New York Times, retrieved 2011-05-13
- "Amtak Seeks $1.3 billion for Gateway Project and Next-Generation High-Speed Rail on Northeast Corridor". Amtrak. April 4, 2011. Retrieved 2011-04-08.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Northeast Corridor|
- Middleton, William D. (1974) When The Steam Railroads Electrified (1st ed.). Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Kalmbach Publishing Co. ISBN 0-89024-028-0
- Spavins, Jim. (2010) Diesels on the Northeast Corridor (1st ed.). ISBN 1-4537-8765-8
- PRR Chronology (Christopher T. Baer)
- Amtrak Northeast Corridor mileposts between Philadelphia and Washington, DC
- PRR New York Division track profiles
- Route on OpenStreetMap
- Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) entries for the Northeast Corridor:
- HAER No. MA-19, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. RI-19, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. CT-11, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. NY-121, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. NJ-40, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. PA-71, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. DE-21, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. MD-45, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"
- HAER No. DC-3, "Northeast Railroad Corridor"