A Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) has been issued by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) for more than $318 million in available Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program grants.
Projects eligible for these funds include the deployment of non-positive train control (PTC) railroad safety technology and rail integrity inspection systems; capital projects; grade-crossing improvements; rail line relocation and improvements; regional rail and corridor service development plans and environmental analyses; any project necessary to enhance multimodal connections or facilitate service integration between rail service and other modes; the development and implementation of a safety program or institute and any research to advance any particular aspect of rail-related capital, operations or safety improvements.
The funds are in addition to the $250 million made available earlier this year for PTC specific grants.
FRA says this NOFO will assist in funding projects that improve intercity passenger and freight rail transportation safety, efficiency, and reliability. At least 25 percent of the funds will be directed towards rural communities.
“The Notice of Funding Opportunity for the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure & Safety Improvements grant program seeks to collaborate with private, state and local investments to boost much-needed rail projects across the country, and we hope interested parties will apply by the stated deadline,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.
FRA also notes that selection preference will be given to projects with a 50-percent non-federal funding match from any combination of private, state or local funds. The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) will also consider how well the project aligns with key departmental objectives including supporting economic vitality; leveraging federal funding; preparing for life-cycle costs; using innovative approaches to improve safety and expedite project delivery and holding grant recipients accountable for achieving specific, measurable outcomes.
“These CRISI grants will help make rail systems safer and more efficient for local communities throughout the country,” said FRA Administrator Ronald L. Batory.
The FRA will host two webinars on Aug. 8, 2018, to aid eligible entities seeking funding. Those interested in participating can register at https://www.fra.dot.gov/Page/P1117.