The Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.6-million grant to the city of Madison, Ind., to upgrade critical railroad infrastructure to support increased commerce.
“The Obama administration is committed to improving our nation’s infrastructure, which is crucial for both creating jobs and remaining competitive in today’s global economy,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. “The EDA grant will help Madison make railroad infrastructure upgrades necessary to both grow local businesses and attract new business to the region.”
The current 70-pound track in the railway system is insufficient for heavier rail cars, which has caused pricing issues and inhibited the ability of the city to receive products. By upgrading to 115-pound track, Madison’s Meese Orbitron Dunne, a plastics design and manufacturing company, will be able to expand its product line. According to the grantee, this expansion will create 15 new jobs and save an existing 110 jobs. Meese is dependent upon the rail system for distribution of its products and materials and has already invested $6 million toward the expansion. The grantee also predicts that the increased capacity of the railroad will assist with future economic development for the region.