Latest Rail News

Hampton Roads, Va., Transit welcomed the call for a public audit of the light rail project as a significant step toward ensuring accountability of The Tide's management and oversight, the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot reports.

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It's unlikely the SMART rail line linking Sonoma and Marin, Calif., counties will be finished by 2014 as promised to voters because the agency running the train project is wrestling with a $155-million shortfall brought on by a stumbling economy, the Contra Costa Times reports.

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Continuing talks on making the area more environmentally friendly focused Tuesday night on expanding the use of trains, buses and bicycles countywide, according to the Elgin Courier News, The Elgin, Ill., Community Network hosted a discussion at Gail Borden Public Library that looked at the future of transportation in the area. Among those attending were representatives from Metra, Kane County Division of Transportation and Schaumburg-based engineering firm TranSystems, the company contracted to draft the city's Bikeway Master Plan.

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Property owners in Whitefish's Railroad District and east of the middle school received good news last week - lab results from 25 soil-borings revealed little or no contamination from underground diesel fuel plumes originating in the BNSF Superfund site, the Whitefish Pilot reports.

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As the years pass, it becomes more vital to introduce and educate the next generation to the railroad industry. To aid in this cause, AREMA has developed a Mentoring Program to benefit the AREMA Student Members. The association is currently seeking mentors to influence the next generation as part of this Mentoring Program.

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Measure R money isn't just for road projects' it can now be used to purchase railroad tracks, the Foothills Sun-Gazette reports. The Tulare County, Calif., Board of Supervisors approved an amendment to the Measure R expenditure plan that will allow the county to purchase railroad fixtures including ties, ballast, tracks and signals to ensure that the property is maintained for rail use.

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The Surface Transportation Board is requesting feedback from Chicago-area communities affected by the merger of Canadian National Railway with the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway Co. The Board will also audit CN's informational reports that the railroad is required to file with the STB as a condition of the merger.

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MTA NYC Transit said that effective Wednesday, January 20, 2010, MTA Staten Island Railway will begin fare collection at the newly constructed Tompkinsville Stationhouse. The $6.9-million Tompkinsville Fare Collection Project included the construction of a stationhouse entrance, the installation of turnstiles, cameras, fare vending and communications equipment.

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Crystal Lake, Ill., officials have approved a pre-annexation agreement for a 17-acre site, where Metra plans to build a commuter train stop, the Chicago Tribune reports. The station, between the Woodstock and Crystal Lake stations, would cost an estimated $5 million and take four years to open, Metra officials say. It is part of a planned expansion to the Union Pacific Northwest line.

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As part of the Obama Administration's efforts to highlight the local impact of economic stimulus programs, U.S. Treasurer Rosie Rios met with Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert at the Omni Dallas Convention Center Hotel construction site to highlight the use of Build America Bonds in North Texas infrastructure projects. The Build America Bonds program has provided $64 billion in low-cost borrowing to date for state and local governments across the country, including almost $3 billion in North Texas.


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