Thursday, March 29, 2018

Pennsylvania approves $32 million in funding for rail

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Pennsylvania approves $32 million in funding for rail Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway

The Pennsylvania State Transportation Commission has approved $32 million in grants to 27 rail freight improvement projects that will help sustain more than 400 jobs across Pennsylvania.

"Keeping our extensive rail freight system in good shape is a vital component of creating a sound foundation for Pennsylvania's economy," said Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf. "These investments underscore our continued commitment in building a world-class infrastructure system that supports the creation of new jobs and our business community."

The funds were approved through the Rail Transportation Assistance Program (RTAP) and the Rail Freight Assistance Program (RFAP) and will help with track construction, as well as track and bridge maintenance projects.

"Rail freight is an important component of Pennsylvania's transportation network and these investments create opportunities for expansion and job creation," Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Secretary Leslie Richards said.

With 67 operating railroads, Pennsylvania has more than any other state and PennDOT explains that its focus is on working with private rail operators to assist in maintaining and improving the roughly 5,600 miles of freight lines in the state.

Entities that were awarded more than $1 million in state funds include:

  • R. J. Corman Railroad Company received a total of $4.66 million in funds including $4.2 million to rehabilitate about 36 miles of track and $266,673 to rehabilitate about 1.2 miles of track.
  • Norfolk Southern received $3.9 million to realign its track in Middletown, which will provide greater clearances for rail freight trains and reduce track curvature.
  • Shell Chemical Appalachia LLC, will use its $3.8 million to construct 10 miles of track from Aliquippa to Monaca, Penn.
  • Allegheny Valley Railroad Co. will rehabilitate nearly 10 miles of the P&W subdivision from Bakerstown to Glenwood Yard with its $2.9 million in funding.
  • Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway Company received $2.3 million to rehabilitate 18 railroad bridges on Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway Company's Pittsburgh and Rook Subdivisions.
  • Buffalo Pittsburgh Railroad, Inc. will rehabilitate about 20 miles of track between Brookville and Falls Creek with its $2.1 million in funding.
  • Mittal Steel USA Railways Steelton & Highspire will receive $2 million to rehabilitate approximately four miles of track.
  • Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad Co. was approved for $1.8 million to replace and surface three miles of track with continuous welded rail.
  • Westmoreland County Industrial Development Corp. will received $1.7 million to rehabilitate approximately three miles of track from Radebaugh to South Greensburg by replacing jointed rail with continuous welded rail.

A full list of recipients and what the awarded funds will be used for, can be found here.