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12/5/2011    Passenger Rail



Passenger Rail Article
Kansas DOT releases passenger-rail service development plan



Passenger Rail
The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) has released its Passenger Rail Service Development Plan (SDP), which is the next step necessary in exploring the feasibility of expanding passenger-rail service in the state, KDOT officials announced in a prepared statement issued late last week.

The SDP follows an earlier feasibility study completed by Amtrak in March 2010. The results of that study provided preliminary cost and revenue estimates, as well as potential schedules for expanded passenger-rail service between Kansas City, Oklahoma City, Okla., and Fort Worth, Texas, KDOT officials said.

The SDP is a “comprehensive business and operating plan” that addresses issues such as route schedule, projected ridership, capital investments to infrastructure, operating subsidies and implementation, they said. The SDP must be completed in order for the project to be eligible for potential federal capital funding for a state-supported passenger-rail service.

The plan explores two options for expanded rail service: a night service between Newton, Kan., and Fort Worth, at an estimated cost of $87.5 million for infrastructure improvements; or a daytime service between Kansas City and Fort Worth at an estimated cost of $245.5 million.

The annual operating subsidy to be shared by participated states for the night service would be $4.4 million; the daytime service’s operating subsidy would be $10 million, KDOT officials said.

KDOT officials expect to submit the SDP to the Kansas Legislature during the 2012 session.  





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