FRA Grants to Improve Safety at Rail Crossings in 14 States

The projects are located in California, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas, with grants for improvements to stations and grade crossings in Montana and for track improvements in Illinois, Massachusetts, and Ohio.

The Federal Railroad Administration awarded $25 million in grants this week to increase safety at railroad crossings, train stations, and tracks in 14 states and in Washington, D.C. -- with 23 projects in all getting the money. FRA had received 40 eligible applications requesting $67.5 million, nearly three times the $25 million that Congress provided in the 2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act that funds the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The projects are located in California, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas, with grants for improvements to stations and grade crossings in Montana and for track improvements in Illinois, Massachusetts, and Ohio.

"It is vitally important that we invest in safety as rail continues to play an increasingly larger role in this country, transporting tons of freight and millions of passengers each day," Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Sept. 12. "These grants will help address some of the improvements that are crucial to ensuring safe, reliable, and efficient railroad networks."

The grants fund safety improvements to railroad infrastructure, including the acquisition, improvement, or rehabilitation of intermodal facilities; improvements to track, bridges, rail yards, and tunnels; upgrades to crossings; and separating railroad crossings and roads. "A safe railroad network requires continuous investment and upgrades," said FRA Administrator Sarah E. Feinberg. "These grants will improve safety at hundreds of railroad crossings and make important safety upgrades at stations across the country. This is an investment that is desperately needed – and I urge state DOTs to join the FRA in investing more in improving safety at crossings."

FRA requested $520 million for competitive local rail facility and safety project grants as part of the president's FY2017 budget proposal.

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