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Maintenance Of Way Article
Minnesota DOT to hold final open house for freight-rail study

Maintenance Of Way
Tomorrow, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) plans to hold its final open house for the Southeastern Minnesota Freight Rail Capacity Study. The meeting will be conducted in Rochester.

MnDOT officials will share findings of an alternatives analysis report, which includes the benefits and costs of options for addressing freight-rail traffic in Rochester. The alternatives include leaving the existing rail corridor as it is, improving tracks, adding overpasses for roadway or rail traffic, or reconfiguring tracks to bypass downtown Rochester.

In December 2009, Congress directed funds under the Rail Line Relocation and Improvement program for a Southern Rail Corridor project proposed by the Olmsted County Regional Railroad Authority (OCRRA). The authority is evaluating ways to relocate an existing Canadian Pacific/Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern line around the city to accommodate a potential increase in train traffic and address local safety concerns.

The Federal Railroad Administration designated MnDOT as the responsible project lead for the Southeastern Minnesota Freight Rail Capacity Study, and the department has partnered with OCRRA to complete the feasibility study.


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