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The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) yesterday announced $4 million in grant funds will be awarded to seven projects aimed at improving rail service.
The funds are being issued through the Minnesota Rail Service Improvement Program, which began in 1976. MnDOT received 21 applications requesting a total of $21.4 million for this year’s round of funding, according to a department news release.
The seven projects and their grant amounts are:• Carleton Capital rail access, $480,000 to construct a rail spur as part of a new freight-loading facility on the Otter Tail Valley Railroad in Fergus Falls. • Central Region Cooperative, $500,000 to construct a new rail spur to service a fertilizer plant on the Minnesota Prairie Line. The plant currently ships product primarily by truck. • Port Terminal Drive North rail crossing modernization, $647,000 to reconstruct, upgrade and modernize 700 feet of curved rail crossing and a switch located at the heart of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority’s Clure Public Marine Terminal.• Farmers Co-operative Elevator Company grain elevator siding, $250,000 to construct rail loading facilities on the Minnesota Prairie Line. The existing elevator currently ships product primarily by truck.• Farmers Grain terminal, $820,000 to construct a rail spur that will enable efficient loading of unit grain trains.• Minnesota Commercial Railway bridge repair, $210,000 to replace the timber deck on the Minnesota Commercial Railway bridge spanning 31st Avenue South in Minneapolis.• Voyageur Capital Group, $1.15 million to rehabilitate 5,475 feet of track and re-establish rail service to the Grand Rapids Industrial Park.