Installation of track
for Norfolk's $338 million starter light-rail line is running 35 to 40 days
ahead of its revised schedule, the City Council was told March 30, The
provincial government of Ontario has announced plans to develop the James Bay
Lowlands in the north of the province, Minerals and Metals magazine reports. More
than 20 mining companies are hoping to cash in on an area believed to contain
high-grade deposits of nickel, copper, zinc, gold, chromite and palladium.
Workers are distributing
90,000 railroad ties beside CN's track between Prince Rupert and Smithers,
B.C., in preparation for an extensive spring/summer replacement work project,
the Terrace Standard reports. A bright yellow tie carrier, complete with a
grappling arm to unload the ties, is now making its way on the tracks east from
Beginning the early part of
April, Earthquake Safety Program construction crews will start working inside
BART's West Oakland, Calif., Station to strengthen it against earthquakes. Crews
will erect scaffolding and enclosures around work areas, which may obstruct
your path through the concourse area as you head to the platform or fare gates.
By 2014, the Illinois
Department of Transportation hopes to start separating the railroad crossing at
Ogden Avenue in Aurora, Ill., the Sun-Times Media Group reports. But at this
early stage, officials aren't certain just how they're going to do it.
BART began running on
schedule again March 29 between Walnut Creek and Pleasant Hill, Calif., after
weekend work on a major construction project that involved removing and
installing 1,200 feet of rail weighing some four million pounds in under 48 hours.
Federal aid alone won't
pay for meaningful highway projects these days, U.S. Transportation Secretary
Ray LaHood said Monday during a visit to the Chicago suburbs, the Daily Herald
reports. Instead, tolls and public-private partnerships in addition to
government funding are the wave of the future when it comes to transportation
improvements, he noted.
partnerships, tolling, the highway trust fund ... a combination of these things
and we'll get there. But right now we're trying to find the path forward,"
LaHood said, while at a stop in Barrington, Ill.
The Peoria Republican
returned to Illinois to meet with U.S. Rep. Melissa Bean, a Barrington
Democrat, and local leaders to talk about transportation needs and tour several
controversial railroad crossings.
The Canadian National
Railway's purchase of the smaller EJ&E railroad to relieve congestion on
some of its busier tracks is opposed by Barrington and other towns along the
line because of traffic and safety concerns.
Although opponents are
suing to overturn federal regulators' 2008 decision permitting the merger,
"it's reality," LaHood said of the acquisition.
The pending surface
transportation bill, a multi-year funding program for roads and transit, will
provide critical assistance for projects across the country when it is passed,
"I think the region
should look to the next transportation bill as an opportunity to solve some of
these big transportation issues," he said.
But the secretary noted
that finding the cash to finance the program is a challenge, particularly given
the depleted state of the highway trust fund, which is funded largely by
gasoline taxes and has had to receive emergency allocations from Congress.
because people drive less and drive more efficient cars," LaHood said.
And given that President
Obama opposes raising the gas tax in the current economic climate, "we've
got to be creative and think outside the box," when it comes to funding
the surface transportation bill, LaHood said.
Touring EJ&E railroad
crossings with LaHood was productive, Barrington Mayor Karen Darch said, adding
the village will continue its legal fight against the U.S. Surface
Transportation Board's ruling.
"One likely scenario
is that the court could remand it back to the board for further environmental
review that could lead to further mitigation," she said.
Ontario's plan to save $4
billion by postponing the construction of Greater Toronto Area transit
infrastructure was met with uncertainty by various industry stakeholders, the
Daily Commercial News And Construction Record reports.
The U.S. Army Corps of
Engineers warns that legal disputes over property access needed to build
levees, floodwalls and gates in eastern New Orleans could mean that area won't
get 100-year protection by the promised June 1, 2011, deadline, says an
editorial in The Times-Picayune.