Thursday, August 6, 2009

Upgrade for Missouri Railways

$200 million to improve infrastructure
Shipping News Feature

USA - The state of Missouri has given the green light to an investment plan of over $200 million as a ‘down-payment’ on 11 rail projects that will seek to improve both passenger and freight on the state's railways.

The plans are part of a stimulus package that the federal government has instituted to radically overhaul the United States rail system. Missouri hopes to win an extra $8 billion in federal funding to complete the upgrades.

Some 40 states have applied for the funding and competition is fierce as projected costs for the combined plans are estimated at $103 billion, almost 12 times the money that is available.

Despite this Brian Weiler, Multimodal Operations Director at the Missouri Department of Transport (MoDOT)  is confident that his state is ahead of the the competition.

“We believe our applications are strong and have a good chance of being approved. Any funding we may receive will help us bring more reliable and eventually higher speed rail service to this region,” he said.