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Kansas Governor announces almost $5 million for nine short line rail projects

The Governor of Kansas has announced that nine short line rail maintenance and rehabilitation projects are being awarded nearly $5 million.

An industrial building along the railroad tracks

Laura Kelly, Governor of Kansas, has announced nine short line rail maintenance and rehabilitation projects are being awarded nearly $5 million as part of the Kansas Department of Transportation’s Short Line Rail Improvement Fund (SLRIF) programme.

“These nine rail improvement projects will strengthen Kansas’ agriculture supply chain, connecting our farmers and ranchers to regional, national and international markets,” Laura Kelly, Governor of Kansas, said. “My administration will continue to invest in needed and common-sense infrastructure improvements like these to maximise our state’s economic potential.”

Six SLRIF recipients will use the funds for major track rehabilitation and rail replacement; three projects were awarded funds for siding extensions and storage tracks. These projects support rail enhancements to expand carload capabilities, reduce truck traffic, increase operating speeds and improve operating efficiencies.

State funding for the nine projects will be enhanced by a 30% match from each recipient, resulting in a total rail infrastructure investment of nearly $6.5 million. The programme received 19 applications requesting more than $18 million in programme funds in this third and final round of funding for the programme through IKE, the state’s 10-year bipartisan transportation programme. SLRIF made available $5 million each for state fiscal years 2021, 2022 and 2023.

“The Short Line Rail Improvement Fund is another opportunity for KDOT to partner with industry to help modernise and make needed improvements,” Calvin Reed, Acting Secretary of Transportation, said. “Projects awarded through this programme serve both short line railroads and their customers by investing in critical infrastructure that helps drive the Kansas economy.”

Selected projects through the SLRIF for State Fiscal Year 2023:

Project Sponsor Project Type Award

  • Bestifor Farms in Republic County Siding extension – $454,622.00
  • Cargill – Salina, in Saline County Storage tracks – $1,252,530.94
  • Gavilon Grain in Sedgwick County Major rehabilitation with rail relay – $421,664.64
  • Garden City Western Railroad in Finney County Major rehabilitation with rail relay – $395,850.00
  • Hi-Plains Cooperative Association in Sheridan County Major rehabilitation with siding – $276,716.90
  • Kansas-Oklahoma Railroad – Wichita South Yard in Sedgwick County Major rehabilitation – $243,559.27
  • Scoular Grain – Pittsburg, in Crawford County Siding extension – $580,098.44
  • South Kansas & Oklahoma Railroad in Elk County Rail replacement – $700,000.00
  • V&S Railway in Barber and Harper counties Major rehabilitation – $666,366.77
  • Total Awarded: $4,991,408.96.

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