Jun 29, 2020 9:40 PM

KDOT announces State Rail Service Improvement Fund projects

Posted Jun 29, 2020 9:40 PM

Keeping Kansas right on track, the Kansas Department of Transportation is invested in the success of the shipping, agriculture and railroad industries.

KDOT is pleased to announce nine rail improvement projects selected to receive $11.5 million in State Rail Service Improvement Fund grants. This program is intended to improve rail access for businesses and preserve the condition of the state’s railroad network.

“We received a great amount of interest in the program this year,” said John Maddox, Manager of the Freight and Rail Unit. “This gave KDOT the opportunity to select projects that will make a significant impact in the shipping, agriculture and railroad industries.”

The total project costs for these nine projects is $21.8 million. Construction on these projects is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2020.

Sixteen applications were submitted by short line railroads and shippers totaling more than $38.9 million in total project costs.

In addition to these projects, four major rehabilitation and rail replacement projects utilizing $11.2 million in grant funds as a part of KDOT’s 286,000-pound Rail Upgrade Initiative are under construction and are expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2021. The total project costs for these four projects is $18.5 million.

“The short line network in Kansas makes up 40% of the rail infrastructure across the state,” Maddox said. “Short lines serve a vital role in keeping the Kansas agricultural sector and shippers (agricultural and industry/manufacturing) connected to the Class 1 rail network.  This connection keeps Kansas shippers connected to regional, national and international markets for Kansas products.”

Overall, KDOT is investing $22.7 million through these two programs.