Latest Rail News

In February, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced $100 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds for projects to help reduce rail bottlenecks in the Chicago region. On July 22, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Illinois Department of Transportation finalized a grant agreement for the CREATE (Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency) program to begin work on those projects.

 Secretary LaHood said freight congestion mitigation projects include new traffic control systems, track and bridge work, a highway-rail grade separation and safety improvements on various rail viaducts.

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The Surface Transportation Board said its Section of Environmental Analysis has issued the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the R. J. Corman Railroad Company/Pennsylvania Lines Inc. (RJCP) proposed construction, operation, and reactivation of a 20-mile railroad line between Wallaceton and Gorton, in Clearfield and Centre Counties, Pennsylvania.

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The Seattle-area Sound Transit board of directors took a major step towards delivering the Sounder commuter rail expansions that voters approved in 2008 by authorizing the purchase of rights to four additional south line Sounder round trips.

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CRSBG-Donovan Manganese Steel Hardening Co. Ltd. of China has entered into a patent license agreement with UNITRAC Railroad Materials, Inc. of Knoxville, Tenn., to operate a patented Explosive Depth Hardening Blast chamber at its headquarters in Shanhaiguan District, Qinhuangdao, Hebei Province.


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Dan Blocher replaces Neil McFarlane, who is TriMet's new general manager, as executive director of capital projects for TriMet in the Portland, Ore., area. Blocher, 49, will direct and manage all aspects of planning, development, design and construction of TriMet's capital projects, including the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Project now in the design phase. He has been with TriMet for 13 years over two periods of employment.

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July 23-25, Metro in the Washington, D.C., area will make upgrades to its track on the Blue and Green lines to improve reliability and service. As a result of this crucial work aimed at keeping the railroad in a state of good repair, riders can expect delays of up to 30 minutes. 



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Jacksonville-based CSX Transportation reached an agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to pay $11.2 million to clean up a former wood treatment plant site in Desoto County in Southwest Florida, the Florida Times-Union reports.

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The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio has approved construction authorization from the Ohio Rail Development Commission directing Wheeling & Lake Erie, Norfolk Southern, CSX Transportation and Indiana & Ohio Railway to install flashing lights and roadway gates at six grade crossings in Auglaize, Champaign, Fayette, Logan, Ross and Wayne counties, the Urbana Daily Citizen reports.

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RailWorks Track Systems, Inc., appointed Robert Rolf vice president and general manager of the South Track division with responsibility for all operations of RailWorks Track Systems - Texas, Inc. He succeeds Jack Wilt, who is retiring as vice president and general manager of this division.

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Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), with co-sponsors Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Senator Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), introduced the Focusing Resources, Economic Investment and Guidance to Help Transportation Act of 2010 (FREIGHT Act), a landmark bill, leading the charge to transform America's transportation policy and investment by focusing on the freight network that enables goods and commodities to move about and reach their markets. The FREIGHT Act provides a visionary, comprehensive, systemic approach to infrastructure investment that addresses the nation's commerce needs while providing a solid foundation that will also help our nation meet its energy, environmental and safety goals. The bill also calls for the creation of a new National Freight Infrastructure Grants initiative - a competitive, merit-based program with broad eligibility for multimodal freight investment designed to focus funds where they will provide the most public benefit.

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