Latest Rail News

John E. Barrett, P.E., S.E., vice chairman of Bowman, Barrett & Associates (BB&A), was honored with the John Parmer Award from the Structural Engineers Association of Illinois (SEAOI). The award is presented each year to a structural engineer in recognition of outstanding contributions in the field of structural engineering whose distinguished career is acknowledged by peers to be an example of excellence.

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The Canadian federal government will contribute C$600 million to transform Ottawa's transit system, making a switch from buses to light rail with a downtown tunnel through the city's core and 12.5 kilometers (7.75 miles) of light rail between Blair Road and Tunney's Pasture, local media report. Transport Minister John Baird made the long-awaited announcement June 8, matching the funding already promised by the Ontario government.

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The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said that MTA Chairman Jay H. Walder appointed Susan G. Metzger as senior policy advisor, effective immediately. Dr. Metzger, who is a member of the MTA Board, will advise the MTA on cost-effective ways to improve mobility within and to Orange and Rockland Counties.

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Massachusetts and Worcester, Mass., officials have reached a tentative agreement with CSX Corp. on a $23-million traffic improvement and neighborhood mitigation package that would accompany expansion of the company's freight yards between Shrewsbury and Franklin streets, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette reports.

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The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is seeking community partners to design future Red Line stations. Station Area Advisory Committees will begin meeting this fall to provide input on key aspects of Red Line station design and station area planning. Interested community stakeholders such as station area residents, businesses, churches, organizations and institutions may nominate themselves to serve on a committee.

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The key to getting federal support for a railroad project is a solid study that supports it, a Massachusetts planner told local business leaders, the Bristol, Conn., Press reports. Tim Brennan, executive director of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission in Springfield, told an audience at the Central Connecticut Chambers of Commerce the story behind the successful Knowledge Corridor rail line in his region. --> ...

(The following editorial appeared on the Knoxville News Sentinel Website.) Railroads hold a unique position in the American psyche, blending the symbolism of uniting the country and the romanticism of a bygone era.

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(The following editorial, "Keeping the train on track," appeared in the Clackamas, Ore., Review.) We support the Oregon Department of Transportation's efforts to increase the speed and efficiency of passenger rail along the I-5 corridor, a move that could boost ridership and offset traffic congestion as the population grows in the future.

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University of California San Diego has built a prototype laser to search for cracks inside rail lines, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. UC San Diego engineers are preparing to test an experimental laser that looks for the kind of cracks inside railway lines that are responsible for many of the 130 or so derailments that occur nationwide each year.

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Nordco Inc. has named Bill Straub President of the company's newly formed Equipment Services Business Unit. Nordco Equipment Services incorporates the company's Rebuild and Repair group in Oak Creek, Wis., and J.E.R. Overhaul in Arcola, Ill.

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