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Commuter Rail Safety and Resiliency Program

Positive Train Control (PTC) & Automatic Train Control (ATC)

PTC ATC

The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 requires every railroad across the country to have Positive Train Control (PTC). As of August 2020, we completed Phase I of the MBTA Commuter Rail Safety and Resiliency Program with the MBTA PTC safety system active on all MBTA Commuter Rail lines.

The MBTA PTC system implements the Advanced Civil Speed Enforcement System (ACSES), a proven system used by all systems on the Amtrak Northeast Corridor which runs through eight states from Washington DC up to Boston.

Phase II includes implementation of Commuter Rail Automatic Train Control (ATC) as part of the MBTA PTC System.

  • Phase II for Commuter Rail Lines out of South Station – successfully completed on time in 2020
  • Phase II for Commuter Rail Lines out of North Station – currently underway

Building a Better T

As part of our $8 billion, 5-year capital investment plan, we're renovating stations, modernizing fare collection systems, upgrading services for our buses, subways, and ferries, and improving the accessibility of the entire system.

Learn more

Service Alerts

To implement and test PTC and ATC systems along the tracks (including running PTC test trains), service may need to be interrupted for various Commuter Rail lines.

Check Commuter Rail alerts

Phase II – Automatic Train Control (ATC) Upgrades

Phase II Timeline 

Map

Phase II Photo Gallery

Phase I – Positive Train Control (PTC)

PTC on the MBTA Commuter Rail System 

PTC System Mapping

The MBTA is in full compliance FRA PTC regulations, completing the PTC System prior to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) deadline of December 31, 2020.

  • PTC is in operation on all of the MBTA’s Commuter Rail lines (394 of 394 route miles)—we placed the last segment in service on August 15, 2020.
  • PTC equipment is installed and fully operational on all MBTA Commuter Rail revenue vehicles.
  • We completed interoperability testing with tenant railroads (Amtrak, CSX, and Pan Am).

Phase I Timeline

Phase I Photo Gallery

Past Events

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Contact Information

For all queries and comments related to Commuter Rail Positive Train Control, please contact the PTC Hotline at PTCProgram@mbta.com or 617-721-7506.

Recent Updates

View all project updates

Building a Better T

As part of our $8 billion, 5-year capital investment plan, we're renovating stations, modernizing fare collection systems, upgrading services for our buses, subways, and ferries, and improving the accessibility of the entire system.

Learn more

Recent Updates

View all project updates