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Rail News: Maintenance Of Way

California Transportation Commission provides $510 million for 83 transportation projects


The California Transportation Commission (CTC) last week approved the allocation of $510 million for 83 transportation projects around the state.

The allocations include $104 million from Proposition 1B, a transportation bond approved by voters in 2006. To date, more than $17 billion in Proposition 1B funds have been provided for transportation projects statewide.

Among the rail projects that will receive allocations, the CTC will provide $12.3 million for the Tehachapi Trade Corridor improvements. The project involves constructing sidings to create a 2.8-mile segment of double track and extending a siding by 900 feet to the portal of Tunnel No. 7 on a Union Pacific Railroad line between Bakersfield and Mojave.

The commission also will allocate $5.74 million for the construction of an underpass on Navy Drive in Stockton to accommodate a future four-lane highway and an additional mainline for BNSF Railway Co./Amtrak shared track.

In addition, the CTC will provide $3.1 million to the town of Truckee to widen a UP grade separation at the "Mousehole" on Highway 89, and $3.9 million to the city of Tulare to complete a grade separation at a UP crossing that intersects I and K streets.

Meanwhile, the Alameda Corridor-East Construction Authority (ACE) announced it will receive $71 million from the CTC to build an underpass and railroad bridge at the Fairway Drive grade crossing in the city of Industry and unincorporated Los Angeles County.

The funds will enable ACE to seek bids this summer and award a construction contract for the $143 million grade separation in fall. The authority plans to construct a four-lane roadway underpass and a double-track rail bridge for UP and Metrolink trains.

"Once complete in four years, the grade separation will eliminate crossing collisions, emergency vehicle delays and train horn noise, as well as reduce emissions from idling vehicles stopped for trains," said Norma Macias, an El Monte councilwoman who chairs ACE's board, in a press release.

The Fairway Drive crossing is used by 49 trains each day — a traffic level that's projected to increase to 91 trains by 2025. The project is part of an ACE program that calls for building 22 grade separations in the San Gabriel Valley along freight-rail mainlines serving San Pedro Bay ports.