U.S. DoT awards more than $56m in grants to improve rail safety, efficiency, and reliability
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has announced $56,933,567 in grant funding for 18 projects in 16 states. The funding will improve the safety, efficiency, and reliability of intercity passenger and freight rail systems under the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) program.
“These funds will help repair and upgrade rail infrastructure that will increase safety and service,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
CRISI grants invest in rail infrastructure. The Department’s Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) reserved at least 25 percent of the awards for rural projects. The 2017 Appropriations Act required $10m for projects that contribute to the restoration or initiation of intercity passenger rail service.
“We’re extremely pleased that the CRISI grant program directs much-needed critical investment to rural America,” said FRA Administrator Ronald Batory.
FRA considered several criteria as stated in the NOFO when selecting projects. These included key Departmental objectives such as: supporting economic vitality; leveraging federal funds to attract other sources of funding; preparing for project life-cycle costs; using innovative approaches to improve safety and expedite project delivery; and holding recipients accountable for achieving specific, measurable outcomes.
The list of awards follows:
Restoration and Initiation Projects ($10 million required):
North Carolina – Millbrook Road Grade Separation Sealed Corridor Project
(Up to $10,000,000)
State of North Carolina Department of Transportation
The proposed project combines three grade separations on the CSX S line north of Raleigh, N.C. Two of the grade separations are primarily being funded by the state, and the third at Millbrook Road would be advanced by the CRISI grant.
Arkansas – ARDOT On-System Grade Crossing Approach Improvements
(Up to $685,600)
Arkansas Department of Transportation
The proposed project will improve the signage and pavement markings at 298 at-grade highway-railway crossings on state and U.S. routes in Arkansas, improving safety at 298 at-grade highway-railway crossings for motorists and could result in a reduction of $1.8m per year in costs.
Georgia – Heart of Georgia Railroad Upgrade Project
(Up to $2,027,192)
Georgia Department of Transportation
The proposed project will upgrade the state-owned Heart of Georgia Class III railroad corridor, which extends for 138 miles connecting Central Georgia with the Cordele Inland Port at I-75 and the Port of Savannah.
Iowa – Booneville Bridge Project
(Up to $3,470,500)
Iowa Interstate Railroad LTD
The proposed project will replace the 118-year old Booneville Bridge over the Raccoon River, located approximately 15 miles west of Des Moines.
Missouri – MoDOT Rail Corridor Consolidation and At-Grade Crossing Safety Improvement Project
(Up to $2,585,080)
Missouri Department of Transportation
The proposed project will implement a grade crossing consolidation plan and other grade crossing improvements along a 19-mile segment in southwest Missouri.
New York – Hudson Line Bridge Decks Replacements
(Up to $6,363,000)
New York State Department of Transportation
The proposed project will replace timber bridge decks with ballast decks on three bridges on the Hudson Line in Dutchess and Columbia Counties, N.Y.
South Dakota – South Dakota West River Rail Improvement Project
(Up to $978,200)
South Dakota Department of Transportation
The proposed project will replace 2.5 miles of 100-year old, 100 lb. rail with modern 115 lb. continuous welded rail on the Class II Rapid City, Pierre & Eastern (RCP&E) railroad near Wall, S.D.
Texas – Borger Texas Chemical Hazard Elimination Safety and Security Improvement
(Up to $2,164,255)
City of Borger
The proposed project will decrease derailment risk on the Class III Panhandle Northern Railroad (PNR) by installing 13,682 new railroad ties and 13,415 tons of ballast. The PNR connects the BNSF mainline with the largest inland chemical and refinery complex in the U.S. The project will improve safety on a line that transports more than 20,000 carloads of hazardous materials annually.
Vermont – Vermonter Amtrak Safety Project for Passenger and Freight Rail Service
(Up to $2,082,519)
Vermont Agency of Transportation
The proposed project will construct slope stabilisation measures along an 80-mile section of the New England Central Railroad (NECR) in Vermont.
Florida – South Florida East Coast Rail Corridor Intrusion Prevention Project
(Up to $2,373,441)
Brightline Trains LLC
The proposed project will install supplemental safety features at 48 grade crossings from West Palm Beach to Miami.
Illinois – Lenox Interlocking Reconfiguration Project in the Village of Mitchell, Madison County
(Up to $5,083,719)
Illinois Department of Transportation
The proposed project will reconfigure the Lenox Interlocking, located in Mitchell, Ill., approximately 16 miles northeast of St. Louis, to increase speeds and operational flexibility for both passenger and freight services.
Mississippi – All Aboard the Safety Train
(Up to $58,800)
City of Gulfport
The proposed project will complete preliminary engineering and NEPA to upgrade a grade crossing in Gulfport, Miss., with a four-quadrant gate system.
Missouri – Replacement of MacArthur Bridge Truss over Broadway
(Up to $7,170,346)
Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis
The proposed project will replace the Broadway Truss component of the Class III Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis’s (TRRA) MacArthur Bridge, which connects St. Louis, Mo., and East St. Louis, Ill., over the Mississippi River.
Oregon – Peninsula Junction Passenger and Freight Rail Improvements
(Up to $1,305,915)
Oregon Department of Transportation
The proposed project is the final component of a multiphase project to increase speeds and alleviate congestion as trains merge onto and off the BNSF mainline at two junctions in Portland, Ore.
Rhode Island – Quonset Freight Rail Enhancements and Expansion (Q-FREE) for Mill Creek Railyard
(Up to $3,000,000)
Quonset Development Corporation
The proposed project will expand freight rail operations at the publicly chartered Quonset Development Corporation’s Quonset Business Park in North Kingston, R.I.
Washington – Pacific Northwest Rail Corridor Reliability – Landslide Mitigation Phase II (Up to $2,035,000)
Washington State Department of Transportation
The proposed project will construct landslide mitigation measures at two locations along the Pacific Northwest Rail Corridor in the city of Mukilteo, Wash., approximately 26 miles north of Seattle.
Washington – Washington State Service Development Plan (Pre-NEPA)
(Up to $500,000)
Washington State Department of Transportation
The proposed project will conduct service planning to develop an initial range of reasonable alternatives for potential infrastructure investments to improve the reliability, safety, and competitiveness of intercity passenger rail service along the Washington State segment of the Pacific Northwest Rail Corridor between Vancouver, B.C. and Portland, Ore.
Wisconsin – Milwaukee Airport Rail Station Second Platform Project
(Up to $5,050,000)
Wisconsin Department of Transportation
The proposed project will construct a second platform at the Milwaukee Airport Rail Station, as well as elevator towers and an overhead pedestrian bridge to connect the new platform to the station.
For more information visit https://railroads.dot.gov
18th February 2019