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Ohio rail commission OKs $1.2 million for freight-rail projects, pursues new executive director


New freight-rail projects and a new executive director were top-of-mind at the Ohio Rail Development Commission’s (ORDC) meeting last week.

Commissioners approved a grant and loan package totaling $925,000 for the village of Leipsic to expand a 2,300-acre industrial park to more than 7,000 acres and tap into rail service provided by CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern Railway and the Indiana & Ohio Railroad.

ORDC also approved a $200,000 grant for Fulton Railroad Co. Ltd. to help fund a $3.4 million transloading facility on the Ohio River in Cincinnati that’s projected to generate 2,500 carloads annually and eliminate 15,000 truck trips from area highways.

In addition, the commission approved:
• a $100,000 grant for the city of Greenville, RJ Corman Railroad and the Dayton Development Coalition to build a rail spur to a plastics manufacturer and planned ethanol plant that’s projected to generate 2,500 carloads annually; and
• a $48,570 grant for the Plymouth Foam Co. to construct a rail spur into a Tuscarawas County Port Authority-owned business park.

Commissioners also voted to enter into negotiations with Michael Bradley, currently director of planning for the Central Ohio Transit Authority, to become ORDC’s executive director. He would fill the position that’s been vacant since long-time director Jim Seney retired in August 2006.

An independent Ohio Department of Transportation agency, ORDC oversees freight and passenger railroad issues, grade crossing safety, and rail travel and tourism in the state.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/21/2007