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Watco's South Kansas & Oklahoma Railroad (SKOL) last month hosted U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) at its Cherryvale, Kansas, facilities to mark the start of construction on a federally funded project.
A $27 million Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvement (CRISI) grant will help the short line modernize 239 miles of its track infrastructure and substructure. SKOL operates a total 433 miles on its network. Moran helped secure the funding by promoting the project and providing a letter of support to the Federal Railroad Administration, Watco officials said in a press release.
The grant was awarded to the Kansas Department of Transportation for use on the SKOL project, with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation as a match participant. Watco is contributing $12.7 million to the project, while $1 million is coming from KDOT and $450,000 from ODOT.
"This grant will provide valuable improvements to the rail system that runs through several rural communities in Kansas," said Moran.