Amtrak is a rail-passenger service for international and domestic traffic. It serves medium to long haul routes, covering the United States and nine Canadian cities. In total, there are over 500 destinations in 46 states and three provinces in Canada. The company’s predecessor is 20 private intercity rail systems that began in May 1971. Now its headquarters are located in Washington DC (Union Station).
Meaning and History
It all started to form a rail and passenger corporation of national importance, made by congressmen in 1970. Over the years, the carrier has experienced many ups and downs. Everything depended on the technical capabilities of the time, the population’s ability to pay, the need for travel, and the number of offers. Today it is the largest structure with progressive equipment and an extensive transport fleet.
Every day 87 thousand people use its services, who travel on more than 300 trains. Nearly two-thirds of passengers come from ten metropolitan areas, and 83 percent use close routes (up to 400 miles). This means that most Americans are familiar with the rail carrier’s brand name. And during the entire existence of the transport service, it had two logos.
At first, the system was planned to be called Railpax. Still, after deliberation and consultation with the branding agency Lippincott & Margulies from New York, a different name was chosen – Amtrak. The same studio created the corporate logo and suggested the colors for the trains.
1971 – 2000
The name of the railway transport service is the basis for the debut logo. It is derived from the words “AMerica” + “TRACK.” In the early years of its existence, the name consisted of one capital letter and six lowercase letters. That is, it was written according to the generally accepted spelling, without separating two different bases.
To the right of it was an arrow-shaped or chevron-shaped indicator that indicated movement. Such a dynamic logo conveyed the purpose of the direction and high speed of movement, as noted in the official manual. The emblem contained a red triangular arrowhead and two stripes resembling a boomerang. They were located parallel to each other and marked the railroad tracks.
2000 – today
The developer of the new logo is OH & Co. It is much more dynamic in style than the previous version and fully meets modernity and the corporate concept requirements. The motion effect is created by a three-line path (abstract stripes) and negative space, forming curving rails. They become thinner – as if they turn and go to the horizon. The title has been moved to the right and in capital letters. Moreover, the colors of the text and graphic parts are identical.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
The brand name exactly corresponds to the direction of work of the railway passenger service. In the first case, it contains a pointer arrow and makeshift rails. In the second – the image of railway tracks stretching to the horizon. The lines are uneven and slightly tapered on the opposite side, giving the impression of moving forward.
The early emblem uses a modified Helvetica typeface. It conveys a minimalist style – simple, sleek, sans serif. The current version uses a wide font – large, massive, grotesque. This time, all characters are in uppercase.
The logo palette is also very different. If in the debut version the colors are bright, juicy, and resemble the American flag in color, now the colors are much more modest. One of the shades of dark blue is selected for the emblem.