The Federal Railroad Administration funded two grants totaling $350,000 to support development of a Short Line Safety Institute. The institute will help mitigate risk associated with shipping hazardous materials by rail by working to improve the culture of safety within the shortline and regional rail industry while improving its overall safety record.
The Metropolitan Council received federal approval to begin designing the METRO Blue Line Extension northwest of Minneapolis, Minn., the region's fourth light-rail transit project. Future approvals needed include approval to enter Final Engineering (anticipated late 2016) and approval of the Full Funding Grant Agreement (anticipated in 2018).
A Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) on a proposed extension of the Gold Line light-rail system from East Los Angeles to either South El Monte or Whittier was released by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA).
Kansas City Southern promoted Shawn Vecellio from director to assistant vice president production and standards for the engineering department.
The Region of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, celebrated the start of ION Stage 1 Light Rail Transit (LRT) construction August 21. The event took place at the future home of ION's Operations, Maintenance and Storage Facility on Dutton Drive.
North Dakota Public Service Commissioner Julie Fedorchak has outlined a proposal for a state-run rail safety program to increase oversight of North Dakota rail operations. The program is included in the agency's budget request submitted last week to the governor.
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) selected ARG Transportation of Eugene, Ore., to operate the 26-mile rail line in central Washington, with a goal to restore rail service to a portion of Grant County, assisting farmers getting their products to market.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) closed a $1.28-billion Transportation Infrastructure Financial Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) for construction of Phase Two of the Metrorail Silver Line extension.
The commonwealth of Massachusetts plans to purchase the Knowledge Corridor rail line between East Northfield and Springfield from Pan Am Southern, a joint venture of Pan Am and Norfolk Southern.
The Port of New Orleans Board of Commissioners awarded a $13.3-million construction contract to Hard Rock Construction LLC for the Mississippi River Intermodal Terminal improvement project. Hard Rock Construction, of Metairie, La., was the lowest of eight bidders.