Latest Rail News

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced the Federal Railroad Administration is soliciting research proposals to foster rapid development of high-speed and intercity passenger rail service technologies in the United States. 
A pool of $25 million is available for basic and applied technology research, development and demonstration projects to advance the state of the art in track and structures, train control systems, operating practices and rolling stock. FRA is seeking projects focused on accelerating development of technologies that ensure safe, efficient and strategic deployment of integrated passenger rail systems. The solicitation is open to all sources.

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Governor Charlie Crist is applauding Florida's application to the Federal Railroad Administration seeking $1.1 billion in funding that will allow Florida to deliver high-speed rail express service in the Tampa-Orlando corridor with operating speeds of 168 mph by 2015, local media report.

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Colorado has received $400,000 and Vermont $500,000 under the Federal Railroad Administration's High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail (HSIPR) Program grant program funded from fiscal year 2009 appropriations. Colorado will use its funds to develop a state rail plan, a prerequisite for receiving additional HSIPR intercity passenger rail funding.

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Sound Transit released updated long-term revenue forecasts to the agency's Executive Committee that show ST2 funding levels down by about 25 percent, or $3.9 billion. Last fall Sound Transit estimated long-term revenue levels to be down by about 20 percent, or $3.1 billion through 2023. The latest estimates come from updated forecasts the agency received showing an additional $767 million shortfall.

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The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, or CMAP, has unveiled a transportation wish list that has the Illinois 53 extension and its companion project, the Illinois 120 corridor, at the top.

 

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Federal and state officials joined representatives of the Town of Normal and Amtrak to ceremonially break ground for a Multimodal Transportation Center that will serve as a station for Amtrak rail and motor coach passengers, local transit buses and will include a multi-level parking structure.

 

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A routine federal requirement that's intended to preserve historic sites threatens to delay some economic stimulus projects around the country, McClatchy Newspapers report. Federally-funded projects that could affect sites with historic value are required to undergo reviews that consider ways to minimize disturbance of the sites. Projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act are no different. In some cases, that's meant delays in getting crucial stimulus projects out the door, and therefore in pumping stimulus dollars into the economy.

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Canadian Pacific is joining the procession of railroad facility developments to handle freight shipments for the area's emerging natural-gas drilling industry, the Times-Tribune reports. Canadian Pacific, based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, is developing a transload facility at its Taylor yard to process sand for Marcellus Shale natural gas development, CP spokesman Mike LoVecchio said.

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Construction on a multimodal transportation center for the City of Trinidad, Colo., is currently expected to begin in summer or fall next year, the Trinidad Times independent reports. The planned center, to be owned by the city but operated by the South Central Council of Governments (COG), will allow ingress and egress from the city by train and bus and to COG's local transportation system.

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The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio approved construction authorization from the Ohio Rail Development Commission directing Norfolk Southern to upgrade a railroad crossing Seneca County, the Advertiser Tribune reports. Norfolk Southern will install mast-mounted flashing lights and roadway gates at the Reedtown Road/TR 126 grade crossing.

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