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Rail News: Passenger Rail

Denver RTD seeks alternatives for FasTracks properties


The Regional Transportation District of Denver (RTD) will re-evaluate parts of its FasTracks program after determining the cost to purchase some Union Pacific Railroad properties exceeded the budget.

UP’s proposed price tag for its 36th Street yard — which RTD planned to purchase for a new commuter-rail maintenance facility — and the western portions of the Class I’s Smith Road alignment along the proposed East Corridor are “significantly higher” than what RTD can afford to pay, according to the agency.

“Negotiations with UP have been positive and constructive and we still anticipate purchasing substantial properties from them for our program,” said RTD General Manager Cal Marsella in a prepared statement. “However, we have no choice but to re-examine other alternatives for some segments to arrive at the most cost-effective program.”

RTD also will re-evaluate certain segments of all four commuter-rail corridors included in the program — specifically, the portions of the alignments that are closest to downtown Denver.

Scheduled to be complete in 2017, the 12-year FasTracks program calls for building six new commuter- and light-rail corridors, extending three existing rail lines, building 18 miles of bus rapid transit lines and redeveloping Denver Union Station.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 1/17/2008