Two dozen freight rail projects in Pennsylvania are receiving $18.6 million in state funding for infrastructure upgrades, much-needed repairs, and improving businesses’ rail access in 25 counties throughout the state.
The grant money is administered by PennDOT’s Bureau of Rail Freight, Ports, and Waterways. PennDOT spokeswoman Erin Waters-Trasatt said the money will be divided based on the specifics of each project.
“The rail is a very important industry in Pennsylvania, and as the Keystone State, we have a lot of truck traffic and rail traffic here, and so we’re looking for the investments that really maximize the rail infrastructure in our state,” Waters-Trasatt said.
Approximately $13.2 million will be distributed through the Capital Budget/Transportation Assistance Program, $5.3 million will come from the state Rail Assistance Program, and $6.8 million will go towards local investments.
Pittsburgh area grant recipients include the Allegheny Valley Railroad Co. in Allegheny County, the Nalco Company and Nicholas Enterprises, Inc. in Beaver County, Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway in Washington County, and Alumnisource, LLC and Three Rivers Marine in Westmoreland County.
Waters-Trasatt said the regional economy will benefit from the projects. “We also have some information on Allegheny and Beaver Counties where these companies will hire people because of expanded operations that’ll be made possible by these investments,” Waters-Trasatt said.
Ten of the rail projects are in southwestern PA:
- Allegheny Valley Railroad Co. -- $1.6 million for the final phase of Glenwood Yard reconstruction
• Nalco Company -- $250,000 to install two rail spurs and equipment for loading and unloading
• Nicholas Enterprises, Inc. -- $415,870 for track rehabilitation
- Brownsville Marine Products, LLC -- $250,000 to install a rail spur and conveyor system
- Fay-Penn Industrial -- $1.2 million to rehabilitate track on the Southwestern Pennsylvania Railroad’s FM&P subdivision line.
Indiana and Jefferson Counties:
- Buffalo & Pittsburgh Railroad -- $2.1 million to rehabilitate track in the Riker Yard and to expand track in Homer City
- Johnstown Industrial Development Corp. -- $338, 723 to rehabilitate a bridge and track leading into Que Industrial Park
- Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway -- $1.1 million to construct a new rail siding
- Alumnisource, LLC -- $355,000 to re-establish a connection between the company’s facility and the CSX rail line
- Three Rivers Marine -- $302,500 to construct new track and to rehabilitate storage track