Latest Rail News

You have to hand it to the Island Corridor Foundation, which owns the 289-kilometre rail corridor on Vancouver Island, for its ambitious plans to resurrect the ailing rail service, according to a column in The Daily News. Graham Bruce, the executive director of the ICF, a coalition of 13 First Nations and local governments formed in 2005 to revitalize the railway system, said that the foundation has made a formal application to Via Rail, operator of the Dayliner service, to begin a new morning southbound train to Victoria that would leave Nanaimo at 6 a.m.

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Funding for the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail (PMLR) project will not affect money available for bus service, TriMet points out. In Fiscal Year 2013, TriMet is slated to sell bonds to generate roughly $40 million for its contribution to the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Line. Like a mortgage, these bonds will be paid incrementally over 25 years or so. TriMet's annual payment will be approximately $3.2 million for debt service on the bonds. It is important to stress that this borrowing won't begin until FY13 and has no impact on current service levels.

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The Michigan Department of Transportation's looming purchase of privately-owned railroad tracks between Dearborn and Kalamazoo as part of an improved high-speed rail corridor to Chicago also will directly benefit a commuter rail project linking Detroit and Ann Arbor, Crain's Detroit Business reports.

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The South Shore is alerting passengers to the last in a series of planned temporary weekend construction outages for 2010. The final weekend outage is planned for November 6-8. During this construction related weekend outage the South Shore Line will not operate trains or shuttle bus service in either direction between South Bend, Ind., and Gary Metro Center beginning 2:30 a.m. Saturday, November 6 thru 3:00 a.m. Monday, November 8.

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With the aim of heightening safety standards, Kootenai County, Idaho, is proposing several permit amendments for the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway refueling station in Hauser, the Coeur d' Alene Press reports. Required by the county commissioners after the station's compliance hearing last December, the amendments would specify when the facility shuts down for a major leak, plus establish new well testing and groundwater monitoring.

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Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Co. continues with its welded rail installation on the Madison Sub. As of October, 14 miles of rail have already been installed by crews, extending from Vincent Street at Milton Jct. to just east of Stoughton, Wis. M/W forces are currently focusing on dumping ballast on the track and raising and tamping for final alignment before winter freeze-up.


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The Gary/Chicago International Airport on reached a pivotal deal for its runway extension project, the Gary Post-Tribune reports. The agreement with Canadian National Railway allows the Gary airport to proceed with the removal of CN's embankment at the end of the runway -- one of the biggest undertakings of the project. The Gary/Chicago International Airport Authority approved the deal Oct. 28, with CN expected to sign on within 10 days.

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The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Board of Directors approved the Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Report (EIS/R) for the Westside Subway Extension and Regional Connector projects, clearing the way for both projects to enter final environmental review and preliminary engineering.

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Illinois Governor Pat Quinn said $32 million from the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program will go to construct a multi-modal transportation station in downtown Joliet. The new transportation center is expected to create 650 jobs, laying the groundwork for future transit-oriented development in downtown Joliet.


 

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The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and the City of Vancouver Nov. 3 will celebrate completion of the first of four projects to help make passenger rail a more viable alternative for travelers up and down the I-5 corridor. The $11-million Vancouver Rail - Rail Bypass and W. 39th Street Bridge project built a two-lane vehicle, bicycle and pedestrian bridge that takes W. 39th Street up over seven sets of railroad tracks in the Vancouver rail yard.

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