Thursday, May 06, 2010

ICC approves bridge reconstruction, rail safety improvements

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The Illinois Commerce Commission has granted approval for reconstruction of a bridge to carry County Highway 8 over the Iowa Interstate Railroad's track and to relocate an existing highway-rail grade crossing in order to make room for the reconstructed bridge. The relocation is near the Village of Wyanet in Bureau County. The bridge in question, which was built in 1931 and rehabilitated in 1981, also spans the Hennepin Canal. Further rehabilitation is not possible due to deterioration of the structure. The new bridge will be wider and provide a safer roadway for the travelling public.

Relocation of the existing Tow Path Road crossing also will result in a safer grade crossing that meets Commission requirements. The total project cost is estimated to be $4.8 million. The Grade Crossing Protection Fund will be used to reimburse Bureau County for up to $1,483,163 of the project costs. This amount has been provided for in the Commission's 2010 Fiscal Year Safety Improvement Program. Bureau County will pay all remaining construction costs.

ICC granted approval for the installation of automatic flashing light signals and gates at the 500N Road grade crossing of BNSF 's track near Alpha, Henry County. The estimated cost to install automatic flashing light signals and gates is $346,882. The GCPF will be used to pay approximately 94 percent of the warning device installation costs, not to exceed $326,538. Oxford Township Road District has agreed to contribute $3000 towards the project. BNSF will pay all remaining installation costs, as well as all future operating and maintenance costs.

ICC approved the installation of new automatic flashing light signals and gates and approach grade improvements at the Decamp Road/TR 47 grade crossing near Worden, Madison County. The total estimated cost for the new automatic warning devices is $212,493. The GCPF will be used to pay 95 percent of the signal installation costs, not to exceed $201,868. Norfolk Southern will pay all remaining installation costs, as well as all future operating and maintenance costs related to the new automatic warning devices.

ICC approved reconstruction of surfaces at various highway-rail grade crossings of the Norfolk Southern tracks in Illinois. Locations where new surfaces will be installed are:

• Brush College Rd., in Decatur, Macon County

• Lehigh Rd., near Kankakee, Kankakee County

• FAS 1285, near Dwight, Livingston County

• TR 210A, near Dwight, Livingston County

• TR 186, near Dwight, Livingston County

• FAS 268, near Streator, Livingston County

• FAS 1354, near Streator, Livingston County

The GCPF will be used to reimburse Norfolk Southern up to $244,464 for the cost of materials. The railroad will be responsible for all labor costs.

All work is to be completed by May 5, 2011.

Project selection and management of GCPF highway-rail safety projects include safety improvements such as the installation of new warning systems, highway approach improvements and the construction/reconstruction of grade separation structures. The Commission administers the GCPF, which is funded by motor fuel tax money designated for rail safety improvements. The General Assembly appropriates $42 million annually for GCPF projects.

 

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