Tag Archives: crossing elimination

Biloxi, MS: -6+2 = a good deal

7 Feb

Biloxi’s city administration is working with CSX to determine how the number of level crossings in the city can be reduced and traffic flow improved. With 29 level crossings across the city the preferred outcome would see six or more crossings eliminated with two replacement crossings constructed.

The new crossings would be located on the planned extensions of Popp’s Ferry Road and Pine Street. At present the specific crossings targeted for elimination have still to be identified. However, with 20 level crossings in the east of the city between Porter Avenue and Oak Street this CSX corridor looks most likely to deliver options for closures sufficient to justify the new level crossings.



Now road traffic counts are on-going, the results of which when combined with accident histories should lead to the identification of specific crossings for closure.

Durham, NC: USD27 million grade separation complete

15 Jul

State transportation officials gathered in Durham on July 12th, 2016 to celebrate the completion of a construction project designed to enhance rail safety and efficiency.

“To help fulfill Governor McCrory’s 25-Year Vision, our Rail Division is working to enhance rail safety and connectivity across the state,” said North Carolina’s Transportation Secretary, Nick Tennyson. “These projects will modernize railroad track, roads and bridges along the corridor between Raleigh and Charlotte.”

The project is funded through a grant from the Federal Railroad Administration and was completed in partnership with the North Carolina Railroad Company and Norfolk Southern Railway.

Construction on the Hopson Road grade separation and passing track project began in 2013 and was the first Piedmont Improvement Program project to break ground. It was designed to improve road safety and speed up train travel along the Charlotte-Raleigh corridor by eliminating railroad crossings at Hopson Road and Church Street. A bridge wide enough to accommodate any future widening of Hopson Road was also built to carry train tracks over the road, replacing the existing street level crossing.

The project also constructed a new 3.3-mile passing track between McCrimmon Parkway in Morrisville and I-40 in Durham.

The improvements will help provide schedule reliability for passenger service as the addition of a second track will allow passenger trains to pass slower freight trains. The new bridge over Hopson Road will reduce the risk of automobile/train collisions, improve safety for automobile and rail passengers and reduce automobile and train traffic congestion.

“This project is a result of long-term vision and collaboration among all the partners involved,” said Scott Saylor, President of the North Carolina Railroad Company. “The Hopson Road grade separation and new passing track will have an immediate and significant impact on both rail and highway safety, as well as increased efficiencies for our freight and passenger rail providers.”

Delivery of the $27 million project is a partnership effort. NCDOT constructed the railroad bridge, road realignment and grading work for the parallel track. Norfolk Southern built the additional track line, and the North Carolina Railroad Company purchased the land for railroad improvements.

Kelso, WA: Grade-separation on the way sooner?

17 Mar

The 2017 USD900,000 funding of planning and engineering to eliminate two level crossings and construct a road-over-rail bridge in Kelso by the state legislature may advance the project by two years from the previously slated 2019 start.

The project will lead to the closure of the Yew and Mill Street crossings and a new grade-separated crossing on Hazel Street that also unlocks better access to a 265 acre lot that could then be developed more easily. Additionally a new pedestrian subway will be provided on Yew Street.

Now, the City of Kelso is looking to agree earlier construction funding for the scheme which in total has a USD25 million price tag. State plans provide for this but not until 2019-2023.




El Paso, TX: Residents want quiet zone and to keep crossings open

2 Oct

El Paso quiet zoneLXinfoImage350-TrainhornsThe El Paso “Five Points quiet zone” project is predicated on eliminating four level crossings (Elm, Birch, maple, Cedar) and upgrading those that remain, with the project scheduled for completion early in 2016.

Although the works to complete the scheme have a way to run there are community concerns that the price they are paying for the quiet zone is too much and that already they are experiencing traffic delays with the diversions around the three of the four permanent closures already implemented. This is exacerbated by the temporary closure of one of the level crossings that are set to remain.

As always, the regulatory position is that the routine sounding of train horns stops when the scheme is delivered and inspected to confirm that the works are fit for purpose.

Santa Fe Springs, CA: State’s most dangerous crossing to be eliminated

22 Sep

LXinfoImage1294-Rosecrans Santa Fe SpringsPlanning is underway to eliminate what is considered to be California’s most dangerous level crossing. The project calls for either a highway underpass or overpass to replace the level crossing which diagonally straddles the Rosecrans Avenue – Marquardt Avenue intersection. subject to the necessary approvals and funding being available construction could start in 2018. The crossing is used by some 130 trains and 45,000 road vehicles daily.

The USD 130 million project to take Rosecrans Avenue under or over the railway is still being designed and four options are being assessed with public meetings on September 30th the next step.

Church Hill, TN: Park plans to founder on level crossing costs?

22 Jul

In 2014, the city of Church Hill purchased 65+ acres, accessed via a private level crossing for a new public park. Now, the costs of creating a public right-of-way over the railway are emerging. Norfolk SouthernRailroad’s (NS)position is that the city will need to agree to the closure of another level crossing within the city as well as meeting the costs of upgrading the access to the park.

If the city fathers will agree to the Fairview Avenue level crossing then, NS would contribute USD 35,000 towards the cost of elimination, with Tennessee’s Department of Transportation adding a further USD 7,500. Unless this closure is agreed, NS are unlikely to agree to any change of status of the crossing. Even with agreement to the change, the city will need to stump-up in the region of USD 400,000-450,000 as automatic half barrier controls will be required.

According to reports, Norfolk Southern would contribute $35,000 toward closing the Fairview Crossing, while TN Dept. of Transportation (TDOT) would match it with $7,500. That would give Church Hill $42,500 to use toward the estimated $400-450,000 price tag required to install the Hollston Mills Crossing. A second condition of the agreement calls for installation of automatic signals, at Church Hill’s expense.

Meanwhile, the park is very firmly on hold.