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Rail News Home Communication and Signal


Rail News: Communication and Signal

North Carolina DOT upgrades seven crossings; Texas town launches quiet zone work


The North Carolina Department of Transportation’s (NCDOT) Rail Division recently completed safety improvements at seven grade crossings.

The division revised crossing signals and installed gates at a Norfolk Southern Railway crossing in Asheville (estimated to cost $445,469); Laurinburg Southern Railroad crossing in in East Laurinburg ($224,293); NS crossing in Chapel Hill ($212,519); NS crossing near Dunham ($210,318); NS crossing in Julian ($199,668); Aberdeen Carolina & Western Railroad crossing near Mint Hill ($198,148); and Aberdeen & Rockfish Railroad crossing near Dundarrach ($171,032).

Federal funds covered 80 percent or 90 percent of project costs, with the state or railroad providing the remainder. Maintenance funding for the crossings will be divided equally between the state, municipality and/or railroad.

As part of an ongoing statewide program, automatic warning devices now are in place at more than 2,400 of North Carolina's 4,100 public crossings, according to NCDOT.

Meanwhile, the city of New Braunfels, Texas, recently began work on the first phase of a quiet zone project.

The work calls for roadway improvements and mill-and-overlay construction for crossings along two Union Pacific Railroad mainlines. Paving work is scheduled to begin in mid-March and conclude in May. The UP lines include about 34 crossings.

The city has been working with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), UP and Texas Department of Transportation to establish a quiet zone by completing infrastructure work and adding safety measures at crossings. “Quiet zone 1” is expected to be approved by the FRA and established by July while “quiet zone 2” — or the quieting of train horns — will be established 30 days after safety devices are installed at all crossings, work that will take about 18 months to complete, city officials said in a prepared statement.

In December 2011, the city approved a design services contract with HNTB Corp. for the quiet zone’s second phase.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/9/2012