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May 30, 2022

US DOT grants $46m of funding for rail projects in California

The funds were granted under USDOT’s Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Grant Programme.

The US Department of Transportation (USDOT) has allocated more than $46m of funding for rail projects in California.

Five grants have been awarded to rail projects in the region, according to Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla.

This includes a $25m grant to the Alameda County Transportation Commission for safety upgrades at 28 rail crossings, as well as two trespassing sites on the Union Pacific railroad in Alameda County.

The funds will be used to improve lighting, fencing, signage, sidewalks, crossing signals and pedestrian gates.

The San Diego Association of Governments was awarded $8m to replace the 104-year-old Pacific Surfliner Bridge.

This is intended to help avoid service interruptions due to structural degradation and damage from wildfires and flooding.

USDOT also allocated $7.5m to build overpasses or underpasses at three rail crossings at Skyway Drive, Branham Lane and Chynoweth Avenue in San Jose.

These crossings are located beside intersections with Monterey Road and the grade separation project is intended to complement the California High Speed Rail project.

In addition, there are plans to set up a multi-university consortium to launch a Climate Change and Extreme Events Training and Research programme through a $4.6m grant to the San Jose State University Research Foundation.

The programme will enable research, education and technology transfer activities to enhance the railway’s resilience against extreme events such as climate change.

To minimise the risk of collisions between vehicle traffic and trains, a traffic signal system will also be installed at the Bascom Avenue Highway-Rail Crossing on the Vasona rail corridor at a cost of $1.2m.

These grants are part of USDOT’s Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Grant Programme.

Senator Feinstein said: “California is the country’s largest economy and drives economic success throughout the nation, but we can’t keep up that role without roads and railways capable of keeping the state moving.

“These grants will help local communities improve their infrastructure and create new jobs, a win-win proposition.”

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