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The Federal Railroad Administration has cleared the way for advancing the final design of the Livingston Avenue Railroad Bridge replacement in Albany and Rensselaer, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul announced last week.
The FRA on Dec. 21 issued a "finding of no significant impact," signaling the end of the federal environmental review process that will now allow the New York State Department of Transportation to advance the final design of the new state-of-the-art bridge that will cross the Hudson River, officials from Hochul's office said in a press release.
The new bridge will be designed to improve rail travel across the Empire Corridor, better serve maritime traffic and provide pedestrian and bicyclists with access across the river.
Construction is slated to begin by the end of 2023. The new bridge is expected to be completed in 2026.
The movable swing bridge was built in the 19th century and provides a critical path for rail service between New York City and western New York. The structure is owned by CSX and leased by Amtrak, and its deterioration limits train crossings to one at a time at a top speed of 15 mph, state officials said. The new structure will be a lift-type bridge with two tracks on a parallel alignment.
As part of the project, improvements will be made to the triangular junction of tracks on the Rensselaer side of the existing bridge to facilitate train-turning movements.