October 1-3, Metro in
Washington, D.C., will install a track switch and upgrade its track, platforms
and aerial structures on the Yellow, Green and Red lines to improve long-term
reliability and service. The track switch is work that was recommended by the
National Transportation Safety Board. As a result of this work, riders can expect
delays of up to 30 minutes.
Feedback from riders and
communities along the Union Pacific North line regarding recent schedule
changes has prompted Metra to postpone the project to rebuild 22 bridges on the
line until next spring and reinstate the line's original schedule with a
two-track operation starting Sunday, Oct. 3.
The Illinois Commerce Commission has granted
approval for construction of a new bridge that will carry County Highway 19
(7000 N Road) over the Union Pacific tracks, in Kankakee County. The County
proposes to reconstruct the structure with a new multi-steel stringer and
reinforced concrete bridge. It will have a 30-foot wide travel surface with
bridge railing on each side, and will provide 23-feet minimum vertical clearance
over the railroad tracks.
(The following editorial
appeared in the New York Times.) Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey has made a
national name for himself by slashing spending on education and other vital
services. New Jersey's children and other vulnerable residents are paying the
price. Now he wants to stall - and perhaps cancel - one of the most important
transportation projects in the country: a new railway tunnel under the Hudson
River linking New Jersey and Midtown Manhattan.
CSX Transportation has
agreed to pay the District of Columbia $7.5 million toward environmental
cleanup programs as part of a settlement reached this month after D.C.
inspectors witnessed pollutants leeching from the company's Benning Road rail
yard, the Washington Post reports.
The South Shore is alerting
passengers to a series of planned temporary weekend construction outages. The
next weekend outage is planned for October 2-4. During these construction
related weekend outages 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 thru 3:00 a.m. Monday.
Chicago Transit Authority
President Richard L. Rodriguez proposed a $1.337-billion budget for 2011 that,
through cost-conscious management, maintains current fares and service levels.
Rodriguez said that the CTA is working diligently to deliver on its mission
while operating in a very tough economic environment. Despite limited
resources, it will also continue to focus attention on areas where strategic
investments will lay the foundation for future improvements and customer
Secretary Ray LaHood announced $50 million in American Recovery and
Reinvestment Act dollars for the State of Vermont to begin construction to
improve 190 miles of track between St. Albans and Vernon on Amtrak's Vermonter
line. The improvements will result in increased speeds, reduced travel time and
After four months of
construction, Sound Transit will open an expanded, upgraded parking lot at 5th
St. SW and 9th Ave SW in Puyallup, Wash., for Sounder riders on Oct. 4. Just
minutes from the Puyallup Sounder station, the lot, which opened for Puyallup
Fair attendees earlier this month, adds 219 parking spaces to 364 slots
currently provided at the station's main lot and 182 spaces at two lots leased
by Sound Transit. Drainage, new lighting, and environmentally sustainable rain
gardens were also added.
In February, U.S. DOT
announced that the CREATE Program would receive $100 million in Transportation
Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) funds under the American
Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to complete five projects. Work on the
first of those five projects began in July. The Broadview/LaGrange
signalization (Projects B4/B5) will install a new bi-directional computerized
Traffic Control System (TCS) along a seven-mile segment of the Indiana Harbor
Belt. This project will upgrade 21 hand-thrown switches to power switches. The
TIGER grant funded $11.7 million of the $13.7 million project. The remainder of
the funds was contributed by the freight railroads.