The Virginia Passenger Rail Authority (VPRA) and Amtrak have reported that ridership on Amtrak’s state-supported trains in Virginia saw record ridership in August, topping the previous record set in July. For the month of August, 119,280 passengers traveled on all four state-supported routes which is an increase of 8.2 percent over the 110,256 that traveled in July of 2022.
Travel to Newport News once again led the way with 33,055 passengers traveling to the Tidewater Region, a 12.9 percent increase over July. This increase included the resumption of one roundtrip that had been suspended during the pandemic. The Newport News corridor with stops in Alexandria, Woodbridge, Quantico, Fredericksburg, Ashland, Richmond Staples Mill Station, Richmond Main Street Station, Williamsburg, and Newport News saw an even bigger increase – 28.5 percent — when compared to August of 2021.
Service to Roanoke and Norfolk both also saw increases following the July launch of two new roundtrips — one to each city. In August 45,742 passengers traveled to Norfolk, a 12.2 percent increase over the previous month. The service with stops in Alexandria, Woodbridge, Quantico, Fredericksburg, Ashland, Richmond Staples Mill Station, Petersburg, and Norfolk saw a 35.4 percent increase over pre-pandemic August 2019 numbers.
The Roanoke service carried 28,655 passengers in August, a 4.7 percent increase over July. This route, which includes stops in Alexandria, Burke Centre, Manassas, Culpeper, Charlottesville, Lynchburg, and Roanoke had a 43.8 percent increase in ridership when compared to August 2019.
“The continued growth of our state-supported Amtrak service shows that rail is not only a viable part of Virginia’s transportation network, it’s a necessary part,” said DJ Stadtler, Executive Director of VPRA. “Every day we are working towards our mission of providing more rail options across the Commonwealth.”
“The demand to travel on Amtrak’s state-supported Virginia service is strong and growing,” said Ray Lang, Vice President of State Supported Services at Amtrak. “We thank customers for choosing an energy-efficient way to travel in the U.S.”
The Washington, DC to Richmond route, which includes stops in Alexandria, Woodbridge,
Quantico, Fredericksburg, Ashland, Richmond Staples Mill Station, and Richmond Main Street Station, continues to rebound from a pandemic suspension of service. In August, 11,828 passengers traveled which was a 22 percent increase over the 9,695 passengers who traveled in August 2019.
August 2022 vs July 2022 Comparison
|Route||August 2022||July 2022||% Increase|
|Route 46 Roanoke||28,655||27,374||+4.7%|
|Route 47 Newport News||33,055||29,271||+12.9%|
|Route 50 Norfolk||45,742||40,763||+12.2%|
|Route 51 Richmond||11,828||12,848||-7.9%|
August 2022 vs August 2021 Comparison
|Route||August 2022||August 2021||% Increase|
|Route 46 Roanoke||28,655||15,280||+87.5%|
|Route 47 Newport News||33,055||25,733||+28.5%|
|Route 50 Norfolk||45,742||20,694||+121.0%|
|Route 51 Richmond||11,828||*0||–|
*Service was suspended due to pandemic.
August 2022 vs August 2019 Comparison
|Route||August 2022||August 2019||% Increase|
|Route 46 Roanoke||28,655||19,922||+43.8%|
|Route 47 Newport News||33,055||33,541||-1.4%|
|Route 50 Norfolk||45,742||33,784||+35.4%|
|Route 51 Richmond||11,828||9,695||+22.0%|
The Commonwealth of Virginia first launched state-supported passenger rail service in 2009 with one roundtrip between Washington, DC and Lynchburg. Since that time, the state’s service has grown to include eight roundtrips daily with stops at 17 stations along four corridors. All four corridors provide service to Washington, DC and points north including Philadelphia, New York, and Boston.