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Home > Archives > Downeaster at Boston North Station, 2016.

Downeaster at Boston North Station, 2016.

Color digital image showing a Downeaster (Boston-Brunswick) train on the platform at Boston North Station; image dates to December 16, 2016.

<i>Downeaster</i> at Boston North Station, 2016.

The inauguration of the Downeaster on December 15, 2001 was the result of two decades of work by passenger rail advocates; the service was the first to operate between Maine and Boston since 1965. The Downeaster is financed primarily through funds made available by the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, which was created in 1995 by the Maine legislature to develop and provide passenger rail service between Maine and Boston and points within Maine.

Here the train stands at the platform at Boston North Station, its southern terminus. Opened in 1995, the $100 million complex is composed of a subterranean parking garage and ground-level rail station topped by a sports arena.

Visible here, with a festive holiday wreath on its nose, is non-powered control unit (NPCU) No. 90224. This NPCU was rebuilt from a F40PH locomotive that had reached the end of its useful life. NPCUs are used in push-pull service because they can control a locomotive and therefore allow a train to operate in either direction without having to turn around at the end of a run. They also provide head-end power for the lights and HVAC systems onboard the train.

Photographer: Chuck Gomez for Amtrak. From the Amtrak Corporate Collection.