Rail Freight Projects Approved For State Funding; Action Sustains Nearly 34,000 Jobs

HARRISBURG – Gov. Tom Corbett announced today that 39 rail freight improvement projects that will help sustain nearly 34,000 jobs across Pennsylvania were approved for funding from two PennDOT-managed programs.

“Transportation is a proven economic driver and these investments will help these companies maintain and create more jobs,” Corbett said. “Ensuring that these facilities and assets are ready to meet consumer demands is vital to keeping our state competitive.”

The State Transportation Commission (STC) voted Thursday to approve nearly  $35.9 million for 13 projects through the Rail Transportation Assistance Program (RTAP) and 26 projects through the Rail Freight Assistance Program (RFAP). RTAP is a capital budget grant program funded with bonds and RFAP is underwritten through the new Multimodal Fund, created by Act 89.

“We have continued investments in Pennsylvania’s rail network because it helps keep our transportation assets strong as a whole,” Corbett said. “Since January 2011 we’ve invested over $167 million in rail and Act 89 will help us continue those efforts.”

Last November, Corbett signed Act 89, a far-reaching transportation program that clears the way for significant investments in all transportation modes.

For more information, visit www.dot.state.pa.us.

Editor’s Note: Following is a by-county list of approved rail freight projects under the programs with the state share:

RTAP Projects:

Allegheny County

  • Allegheny Valley Railroad Co. — $1.9 million to rehabilitate the railroad’s 36thStreet bridge, increasing its weight capacity and reducing a curve on the bridge.
  • Pittsburgh Ohio Central Railroad — $713,020 to realign track, construct 4,460 feet of new track, construct a new turnout to connect track and create a second long track in the Scully Yard in Crafton Borough.
  • Union Railroad — $701,960 to repair the approaches on the north and south portals to the railroad’s North Bessemer Tunnel.
  • U.S. Steel Corporation — $1.9 million to construct a rail siding at the Clairton Yard, install track panels and four new turnouts in Clairton Works, install track panels and three new turnouts at the Edgar Thomson Works, and install cross ties, track panels and two new prefabricated turnouts at the Irvin Works.
  • Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway, Co. — $3.2 million to install 14.5 miles of continuous welded rail on the Pittsburgh Subdivision.

Armstrong, Butler and Lawrence counties: Buffalo Pittsburgh Railroad, Inc.– $2 million of work between Kittanning and New Castle for restoration of the Chewtonsiding , providing 9,000 feet of additional siding capacity, to restore the Mosgrove West siding, providing 2,400 feet of additional siding capacity and to complete other rail and switch work.

Bucks County

  • Kinder Morgan Bulk Terminal — $1.2 million to construct 6,600 feet of track and drainage facilities as well as install 120 feet of track for a public grade crossing and associated utility work.
  • SMS Rail Service, Inc. — $613,682 to construct an 800-foot siding, install a new switch, replace seven switches and other track work.

Cambria, Clearfield, Clinton and Indiana counties: RJ Corman Railroad Group PA Lines — $4.3 million to install cross ties and switch ties, renew several  crossings, install  bridge ties and other track work.

Carbon County: Reading Blue Mountain & Northern Railroad — $5 million to construct a new bridge across the Lehigh River and 1,200 feet of new connecting track.

Chester County: Arcelor Mittal Plate, LLC — $2.8 million to rehabilitate a bridge and replace track in the City of Coatesville and Modena Borough.

Mercer County: Duferco Farrell Corporation/NLMK Pennsylvania — $551,177 to rehabilitate track, turnouts and a grade crossing, as well as install turnouts, replace crossties and surface track.

Westmoreland County: Westmoreland County Industrial Development Corporation — $1.5 million for the second of three phases for an improvement project, replacing 3.2 miles of rail and associated work.

RFAP Projects:

Adams County: Gettysburg & Northern Railroad Co. — $199,528 to install 1,600 ties on 4 miles of track with related hardware.

Allegheny County

  • Pittsburgh and Ohio Central Railroad — $489,636 to replace a turnout, crossties, 8,960 feet of rail and make other track improvements.
  • Tube City IMS, IIC — $472,500 to replace 12 turnouts, 2,673 feet of mainline track and repair a rail scale.
  • Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway, Co. — $700,000 to install 60,800 feet of continuous welded rail as well as install 10,000 new cross ties and four turnouts.

Berks County: Dyer Quarry, Inc. — $165,515 to replace a turnout, approach rail and cross ties, as well as track surfacing work.

Blair County: Hollidaysburg & Roaring Spring Railroad — $295,942 to repair two bridges and improve  public grade crossings.

Bradford County: Northeast Freight Transfer, Inc. — $697,417 to install 1,800 feet of track, a new switch, two conveyors and a track scale.

Bradford and Wyoming counties: Lehigh Railway LLC — $353,500 to rehabilitate, raise, line and surface rail sidings at the Wyalusing Terminal.

Carbon County: Horsehead Corporation — $700,000 complete bridge repairs including pier support, tie replacement and approach rail work.

Centre County: SEDA-COG Joint Rail Authority — $250,000 to complete improvements including track and turnout construction, upgrading rail and installing drainage.

Chester County: Chester County Economic Development Council — $171,990 to construct a new 200-foot rail siding into the Mogreena Industrial Complex to serve Waste Oil Recyclers, Inc.

Columbia County: Autoneum North America, Inc. — $250,000 to relocate and replace a turnout, construct 1,600 feet of track and install a grade crossing.

Dauphin County: Middletown & Hummelstown Railroad — $203,000 to upgrade 300 feet of track, install a turnout and a track greaser to decrease friction on a curve.

Franklin County: Franklin County General Authority– $656,320 to improve track in the Cumberland Valley Business Park and the Letterkenny Army Depot.

Lawrence County: Hill Railroad Car Company — $189,000 to construct two turnouts and 1,200 feet of track.

Luzerne County: Redevelopment Authority of Luzerne County — $497,000 to replace five switches and install 3,000 ties.

Lycoming County: Jersey Shore Steel. — $224,000 to construct 800 feet of track providing new rail service at the Montoursville facility.

McKean County: Western New York PA Railroad Company, LLC — $448,078 to repair a railroad bridge including timber repairs and replacements, and track approach repairs.

Mercer County: Ellwood Crankshaft and Machine Company — $262,500 to construct 500 feet of new track and a turnout.

Montgomery County: Lansdale Warehouse Co., Inc. — $32,900 to install a new drainage system, upgrade 400 feet of siding, install new ties and other rail improvements.

Philadelphia County:

  • Consolidated Rail Corporation (CONRAIL) — $634,106 to install ties and timbers as well as surface 27,081 feet of track in three locations in thePhiladelphia area.
  • Philadelphia Regional Port Authority — $278,705 to replace and upgrade rail, ties, switch timbers and more as well as upgrade asphalt.

Schuylkill County

  • Reading Anthracite Company — $493,850 to upgrade a retaining wall, relocate tracks pave loading dock floors, and complete other work at two locations in the Butler and Norwegian townships site.
  • Waste Management & Processors, Inc. – $534,100 to rehabilitate 700 feet of track, repair a retaining wall, repair paved areas and install other improvements.

Union County: Heller’s Gas Inc. — $250,000 to construct a turnout, 500 feet of track as well as improvements for offloading rail cars.

Westmoreland County: Lehigh Specialty Melting, Inc. — $229,026 to reconstruct 850 feet of outside track and 200 feet of track inside the forge shop and associated engineering.

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