VP Project Development & Planning Services - 90304323 - Washington

Date: May 26, 2023

Location: Washington, District of Columbia, US, 20001

Company: Amtrak

Your success is a train ride away!

As we move America’s workforce toward the future, Amtrak connects businesses and communities across the country. We employ more than 20,000 diverse, energetic professionals in a variety of career fields throughout the United States. The safety of our passengers, our employees, the public and our operating environment is our priority, and the success of our railroad is due to our employees.


Are you ready to join our team?

Our values of ‘Do the Right Thing, Excel Together and Put Customers First’ are at the heart of what matters most to us, and our Core Capabilities, ‘Building Trust, Accountability, Effective Communication, Customer Focus, and Proactive Safety & Security’ are what every employee needs to know and do to be most impactful at Amtrak. By living the Amtrak values, focusing on our capabilities, and actively embracing and fostering diverse ideas, backgrounds, and perspectives, together we will honor our past and make Amtrak a company of the future.


The purpose of this position is to lead the office within the Capital Delivery organization, responsible for determining how and when projects will be delivered, and to provide functional support for all execution teams. This office focuses on defining programs and projects based on logical sequencing of work, phasing for operations and constructability, delivering in the most effective and efficient manner possible, and influencing project outcomes to ensure that Amtrak delivers as promised.


This office has significant impact on the major capital program as the key decisions critical for success are made at the beginning of the program, from delivery method strategy decisions to access commitments and resourcing plans.  Building a team with the expertise and resources to strategically plan how programs should be executed will significantly improve project outcomes, potentially saving millions of dollars in program inefficiencies and delays.



  • Project Controls. Plan for and provide expert project controls support to project teams, including training project-based Project Controls Engineers. Set and implement Project Controls policies and procedures including for the following:  Estimating, Scheduling, Cost Engineering, Risk Management, and QA/QC.  Ensure that data is used through procedures and staffing to influence project outcomes to ensure that Amtrak delivers as promised.  
  • Workforce Planning.  With the execution teams and the Service Delivery & Operations Department (SD&O), allocate force account support for near-term work, including deconflicting/prioritizing work (when force account support is over-subscribed).  Provide the workforce planning from project inception through transition to Operations and Maintenance (O&M) with inputs from HR and SD&O teams
  • Capital Portfolio Planning. Develop and maintain CAPD project prioritization framework and prioritize across Amtrak CAPD portfolio on an annual basis. Manage and communicate changes to Amtrak and CAPD project priorities and interface with Capital Governance and ELT on the same.  Identify and execute strategic improvement initiatives across CAPD teams.  
  • Long range access planning.  Operations department controls the near term (<2 year) outage plan, but most major projects and programs require track access considerations and commitments 3+ years in advance of the outage.  This group is responsible for developing and maintaining the tools and processes to support long-range (2-15 year) access planning and outage scheduling for Amtrak major track and station infrastructure, particularly the Northeast Corridor.  This group interfaces with the Northeast Corridor Commission (NECC) to coordinate execution of the NEC Connect37 program.
  • Project Development and Commercial Management.  Define, Develop and execute a robust Project Development and Commercial Management function that supports a $50b+ Infrastructure, Stations, Fleet and Facilities and Third-Party Capital Delivery Program, Portfolios and Projects, which includes the following:
    • Partner with sponsoring departments (Planning & Asset Development, the Service Lines and Operations) to evaluate best delivery method for each major capital project.  There are many ways to deliver any given project, from the number of contract packages to use to the form of contract (e.g., Design-Build, Design-Bid-Build) and best practice is to make a conscious, strategic choices regarding delivery method early in project development.  Depending on the project, this would be at the feasibility stage or in conceptual engineering.   This will include developing project charters and coordinating internal approvals.
    • Develop and assign people and resources to/from project teams to ensure each project has strong commercial management, including oversight of Contracting Officer’s Technical Representative (COTR), or its equivalent, responsibilities, to support projects executing as planned – safely delivering high quality assets, on time and on budget.  
    • Develop policies and procedures related to project development, commercial management, environmental and cultural compliance, and external partnerships.  
    • Support early project development work by other departments to enable successful project approval and funding.
    • Establish a robust training program for alternative delivery models both from procurement and execution perspectives across the enterprise.
    • To inform sound delivery strategy, it is imperative that we have a good understanding of the market dynamics of our designers, contractors and major suppliers.  This office works with Procurement and Law to ensure we understand the risks the market is willing and able to bear, as well as the capacity for large projects, as that may affect the delivery method and packaging strategy.  This group will also proactively seek and/or develop new methods for project delivery to deliver maximize value for Amtrak.
  • Capacity Building.  As part of ramping up for a significant increase in capital execution, a key function will be building the company’s capacity to manage different delivery models and develop scalable models for how to prosecute our Owner-side responsibilities. Capacity building will require working with other departments to identify gaps and risks based on the long-range capital program and plan for the resourcing and training necessary to deliver as planned.  In some cases, this can be address with short term consultants to support training and development of new procedures/policies.  In some cases, it will be developing strategies to contract for the resources to supplement Amtrak staff for particular programs. 



  • Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, Construction Management, Business or related field (degree requirement may be waived by an additional 4 years of relevant experience). 
  • Minimum 15 years’ experience leading the development and/or delivery of complex infrastructure,
  • Ability to partner with multiple stakeholders and project partners while ensuring Amtrak’s strategic interests are achieved and cost, schedule and scope outcomes are achieved.  
  • Expert ability to properly structure and resource projects and programs to optimize value and risk transfer. Extensive experience with project development and alternatives analysis and alternative project delivery methods.
  • Master of collaboration, team building, and strategic alignment across all levels of both internal and external organizations and with track record of successful and diplomatic coordination across myriad stakeholders with competing objectives.
  • Executive level oral and written communication skills across all levels of internal and external stakeholder groups. Ability to organize and present executive, board and congressional level reports, proposals, and other related information.
  • Experience developing plans of funding and finance from multiple sources.  Knowledge and understanding of federal government funding protocols and regulatory compliance requirements related to publicly funded project and program delivery, including permitting and public engagement processes
  • A demonstrable track record of delivering value for money outcomes on large complex programs, ability to drive decision-making through risk and data-based analysis. Experienced with building inter-departmental consensus or support for solutions. 
  • Executive Level Proficiency in Project Management core competencies: (scope, schedule, budget, risk, quality, integration, resource management, prioritization, continuous improvement, and communications).  Experience in major construction project management, engineering and/or construction, Contract Management, Commercial strategy.
  • Other duties as assigned




  • Master’s in Business, Law or Construction Management
  • A track record of successful public-private partnership or multi-party agreement negotiations.
  • Experience with capital delivery within operating environment preferred.



  • Position may be based Washington and will require frequent daily travel between these and other Mid Atlantic cities.
  • Travel: 25-35% (overnight) 
  • Constantly works in fast-paced, time sensitive environment with frequently changing priorities.
  • Frequently resolves problems with conflicting priorities in cognitively demanding situations.
  • Ability to work under pressure and with minimum direct supervision.



Must have excellent oral and written communication skills.


The salary/hourly range is $220,910 - $286,300. Pay is based on several factors including but not limited to education, work experience, certifications, internal equity, etc. Depending on an employee’s assigned worksite or location, Amtrak may consider a geo-pay differential to be applied to the employee’s base salary. Amtrak may offer additional incentive and pay programs to recognize and reward our employees, including a short-term incentive bonus based upon factors such as individual and company performance that is commensurate with the level of the position and/or long-term incentive plan compensation. In addition to your salary, Amtrak offers a comprehensive benefit package that includes health, dental, and vision plans; health savings accounts; wellness programs; flexible spending accounts; 401K retirement plan with employer match; life insurance; short and long term disability insurance; paid time off; back-up care; adoption assistance; surrogacy assistance; reimbursement of education expenses; Public Service Loan Forgiveness eligibility; Railroad Retirement sickness and retirement benefits; and rail pass privileges. Learn more about our benefits offerings here.

Requisition ID:158649
Posting Location(s):District of Columbia
Job Family/Function:Engineering 
Relocation Offered:No 
Travel Requirements:Up to 25% 

You power our progress through your performance.

We want your work at Amtrak to be more than a job. We want your career at Amtrak to be a fulfilling experience where you find challenging work, rewarding opportunities, respect among colleagues, and attractive compensation. Amtrak maintains a culture that values high performance and recognizes individual employee contributions. 

Amtrak is committed to a safe workplace free of drugs and alcohol. All Amtrak positions requires a pre-employment background check that includes prior employment verification, a criminal history check and a pre-employment drug screen. 

Candidates who test positive for marijuana will be disqualified, regardless of any start or local statue, ordinance, regulation, or other law that legalizes or decriminalizes the use or possession of marijuana, whether for medical, recreational, or other use. Amtrak's pre-employment drug testing program is administered in accordance with DOT regulations and applicable law.  

In accordance with DOT regulations (49 CFR § 40.25), Amtrak is required to obtain prior drug and alcohol testing records for applicants/employees intending to perform safety-sensitive duties for covered Department of Transportation positions. If an applicant/employee refuses to provide written consent for Amtrak to obtain these records, the individual will not be permitted to perform safety-sensitive functions.


In accordance with federal law governing security checks of covered individuals for providers of public transportation (Title 6 U.S.C. §1143), Amtrak is required to screen applicants for any permanent or interim disqualifying criminal offenses. 

Note that any education requirement listed above may be deemed satisfied if you have an equivalent combination of education, training and experience.

Amtrak is an EOE/Affirmative Action Minority/Female employer, and we welcome all to apply. We consider candidates regardless of race/color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth and related conditions), national origin/ethnicity, age, disability (intellectual, mental and physical), veteran status, marital status, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, genetic information, citizenship or any other personal characteristics protected by law.