VPRA provides update on Franconia to Lorton Third Track Project

VPRA provides update on Franconia to Lorton Third Track Project Image credit: VPRA

Virginia Passenger Rail Authority (VPRA) has provided update on the Franconia to Lorton Third Track, which will increase rail capacity and alleviate congestion for passenger and freight services by adding a third mainline track along one of the most heavily traveled sections of rail between DC and Richmond. The project is in Engineering stage.

The Franconia-Springfield Bypass will alleviate train interference at one of the most congested points in Virginia – between Fredericksburg and Washington, DC.  The additional 6 miles of mainline third track from Franconia to Lorton will create a continuous third track corridor between Alexandria and Lorton. In addition, the project will construct railroad bridges over Newington Road and Lorton Road, and other infrastructure to accommodate the additional third track. 

The Franconia to Lorton Third Track Project will be coordinated with the Franconia-Springfield Bypass Project. Through the $405 million project, VPRA and partners will construct an approximately 0.9-mile-long, dedicated passenger rail bridge located just south of the Franconia-Springfield Metro station.

The bridge, which will cross over two existing freight tracks, will be owned by VPRA and will allow passenger trains to cross over the existing freight tracks to reach station stops on the opposite side. The project will provide a connection for passenger trains between the west side of the corridor north of the bridge and the east side of the corridor south of the bridge, providing improved service for both passenger and freight trains through the area. 

The bypass will create two separate rail corridors through the area, one for passenger trains and one for freight trains and will serve both Amtrak as well as Virginia Railway Express (VRE) trains.  Construction is expected to begin in 2024 and last two years.

Source: VPRA