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By Jeff Stagl, Managing Editor
The American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA) yesterday named TranSystems Corp. the winner of the 18th annual Dr. William W. Hay Award for Excellence at the association's annual meeting and exhibition in Orlando, Fla.
The engineering firm earned the award — which recognizes outstanding railway engineering projects — for the P-1 Englewood Flyover project in Chicago that's part of the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) Program. Chosen from among two submissions this year, the project met the award’s main criteria of displaying innovation or improving safety or service performance reliability, said Amtrak's Mike Franke, who also serves as AREMA's treasurer and chair of the Hay award committee, during a general session presentation.
Completed in late 2014, the more than $140 million, triple-tracked Englewood Flyover eliminated a major rail choke point, which had caused delays on the south side of Chicago. The bridge replaced a crossing between Metra's Rock Island Line tracks and a set of Norfolk Southern Railway tracks at 63rd and State streets. In addition to Metra and NS, project partners included the Illinois Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration and Association of American Railroads/CREATE Program.
The flyover provided additional benefits to rail operations in Chicago and was completed on time and on budget, said Franke.
AREMA established the annual award to honor the memory and accomplishments of William Walter Hay, an association member and leader who was a professional railroader in military transportation service and the freight-rail industry. Hay was a consultant on rail design, construction and operations and, for more than 25 years, was a professor of railway civil engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.