New MARTA rail cars: What features do you want?

A rendering of what MARTA’s new rail cars might look like. The agency’ is buying new cars and wants public input on internal features. (COURTESY OF MARTA)
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A rendering of what MARTA’s new rail cars might look like. The agency’ is buying new cars and wants public input on internal features. (COURTESY OF MARTA)

MARTA is spending $646 million to buy new rail cars, and it’s looking for your thoughts on what it should get for its money.

Many of the agency’s 300-plus rail cars have been in service for more than 40 years. In 2019 MARTA’s board of directors agreed to buy 254 new cars from Stadler US.

MARTA CEO Jeffrey Parker said the cars “will provide a safer, more efficient ride, improving reliability and reducing rail delays caused by the aging fleet.

“We also want these trains to be comfortable, look good, and have all the bells and whistles that make riding convenient and enjoyable,” he said.

The new cars won’t begin arriving until 2023. But MARTA is asking the public for feedback on interior features like seating, luggage storage, bike areas, maps/wayfinding, handrails/stanchions and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility. You’ll find more information and a survey at www.itsmarta.com/yourride.aspx.

MARTA plans to solicit input on external features of the new cars in coming months.