The North Carolina Department of Transportation has awarded a $10.9-million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act contract to Fred Smith Co. of Raleigh, N.C., for a rail safety improvement project.
The plan calls for the realignment of 3.8 miles of the North Carolina Railroad/Norfolk Southern tracks from north of I-40 to McCrimmon Parkway. That part of the project will include construction of a railroad bridge over Hopson Road. It will be built to accommodate the future widening of the road.
The project also calls for the closure of the railroad crossing of Church Street and the adjacent intersection of Church Street and N.C. 54 (Miami Boulevard).
The existing railroad crossing for Hopson Road has a poor line of sight for vehicles, as does the crossing for Church Street. Eliminating the crossings takes away the potential for crashes at those sites. In addition, realigning the railroad tracks means trains are able to maintain a higher rate of speed, reducing travel time and improving reliability.
Work on the project can get under way as early as Dec. 31 and is expected wrap up by Aug. 31, 2014.