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Rail News: Positive Train Control

MBTA obtains $382 million in federal loans for PTC work

The agency secured the funds under the TIFIA and RRIF programs.
Photo – MBTA

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has secured $382 million in federal loans to implement positive train control (PTC), the agency announced yesterday.

The federal Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) and Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) programs issued the loans under a combined commitment agreement — a first for the federal programs, MBTA officials said in a press release.

"Securing long-term funding for the PTC project at a low interest rate puts us one step closer to our goal of achieving fiscal sustainability," said MBTA Acting Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer Paul Brandley.

Through 2018, the MBTA will continue to install PTC-related hardware along all commuter-rail lines. From 2018 through 2020, the agency will install software and other technical elements needed to bring PTC system online.

The federally mandated deadline for implementing PTC is Dec. 31, 2018. However, railroads that meet key milestones are eligible for an extension to Dec. 31, 2020.

In late 2015, the MBTA awarded a contract to Ansaldo STS USA Inc. to install a PTC system.

So far, the agency has installed PTC on its Newburyport/Rockport, Lowell and Needham lines.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/14/2017