ICC Approves Highway/Rail Grade Crossing Projects

Written by Marybeth Luczack, Executive Editor, Railway Age
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The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) last month reported signing off on stipulated agreements to improve safety at highway/rail grade crossings in Fayette, Pike, Stephenson and McLean counties.

The Illinois Grade Crossing Protection Fund (GDPF) will cover part of the projects’ expenses, according to ICC, which administers GDPF. The Illinois General Assembly appropriates $42 million annually for GCPF.

The four newly approved projects are:

  1. $440,226 Project in Fayette County. Union Pacific (UP) will install new automatic warning devices at the 1325 North highway/rail grade crossing near St. Peter in Wheatland Township. The estimated cost is $316,581. GCPF will cover 95%; UP will pay all remaining installation costs and future costs to operate and maintain the devices. Wheatland Township will reconstruct the existing highway approach grades at the crossing. The estimated $123,645 cost will be covered by GCPF; the township will pay all future maintenance costs.
  2. $597,218 Project in Pike County. New automatic flashing light signals, gates, and warning devices will be installed and approach-grade improvements will be made at the 150th Street highway/rail grade crossing near Hull. The total estimated cost for the devices is $377,383. GCPF will be used to pay 95% of the signal installation costs; Norfolk Southern (NS) will pay all remaining signal design and installation costs, as well as all future costs to operate and maintain the devices and temporary stop signs. According to ICC, Pike County, on behalf of Levee Township Road District, has estimated the cost to improve the roadway approach grades at $219,835. Because the township is unable to pay, ICC reported, GCPF will cover 100% of the improvement cost.  
  3. $332,179 Project in Stephenson County. The CN-owned Chicago, Central & Pacific Railroad Company (CC&P) will install new automatic warning devices at the North Harlem Center Road highway/rail grade crossing near Freeport. The estimated cost to complete the crossing improvements is $332,179. GCPF will be used to pay 95%; CC&P will pay all remaining installation costs and all future costs for device maintenance.
  4. $616,064 Project in McLean County. New automatic flashing light signals and gates will be installed and approach-grade and side-slope improvements will be made at the 2150 East Road highway/rail grade crossing near Holder. “The project came to the attention of the ICC Rail Safety Section via an application for emergency assistance from McLean County and the Old Town Road District,” ICC reported. The total estimated cost for the new devices is $394,064. GCPF be used to pay 95% of the signal installation costs; NS will pay all remaining signal design and installation costs, and all future costs to operate and maintain the devices and temporary stop signs. According to ICC, McLean County, on behalf of Old Town Road District, has estimated the cost to design and rehabilitate the roadway approach grades/side slopes at $222,000. The township will pay a $22,000 lump sum for preliminary engineering “to expedite the design process,” ICC reported. GCPF will be used to pay 100% of the remaining estimated roadway approach grade rehabilitation costs.
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