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Commuter Rail

MARTA Board Approves FY06 Operating and Capital Budget

ATLANTA – The Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Rapid Transit Authority today passed a $770.7 million Operating and Capital Budget for Fiscal Year 2006, which begins on July 1, 2005. In conjunction with their decision, the Board also passed a new policy requiring that an amount equivalent to 10% of the prior year’s operating budget be maintained in an operating reserve account. "After careful thought and deliberation, this board has passed a budget that is responsible and that will allow us to continue to provide the best possible service to our customers through enhancements to our operations as well

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Commuter Rail

MARTA Opens 33-Acre Rail Facility

ATLANTA – The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) celebrated the opening of its largest rail maintenance and storage facility during a dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony on May 23, 2005. The facility will allow MARTA to maintain and store a recently expanded 338 rail car fleet. The Armour Yard Rail Service Facility, located at the northeast corner of the intersection of Piedmont Road and Interstate 85, will maintain and store over 100 rail cars on 12,000 feet of track. The 33-acre state-of-the-art facility includes a 208,000-square-foot Maintenance and Overhaul Facility, Control Tower, Traction Power Substation, Gap Breaker Building, Train

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CSX

Side Tracks

Short-line rail companies continue to carry their weight on routes that otherwise might have been abandoned The train grinds to a halt, and engineer Eddie Pitchford breaks out his cell phone. Two locomotives with coal cars in tow sit idle in a wooded area north of downtown Athens, and the train’s progress rests on the word of an anonymous dispatcher 300 miles away. “Some days we get hung up here,” Pitchford said. The Hartwell Railroad freight train must cross CSX Transportation’s main rail line running between Atlanta and Wilmington, N.C., before it can proceed into downtown Athens. From his cell