Project Proposal for the Reduction of North Pole Road/Rail Crossing Already Started
The Alaska Railroad Corporation (ARRC), along with the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), is conducting their Environmental Assessment (EA) and preliminary engineering for the North Pole Road/Rail Crossing Reduction Project they proposed.
With it’s EA already started in 2010, this ongoing project represents the first phase of a larger realignment project proposal called Fairbanks Area Rail Line Relocation. However, this phase operates in an entirely independent utility thus providing immediate safety benefits to the its surrounding community.
This proposed crossing reduction will cover the 8-mile section of Eielson Branch (from Richardson Hwy Milepost 9 to the Chena River Floodway) stretching through North Pole. This may include realigning this section of track on or along the Tanana River Levee as well as the installation of a new grade-separated crossing (overpass), potentially removing the at-grade crossing of the Richardson Hwy.
Public safety in downtown North Pole is the project’s main purpose, and ARCC intends to address this by eliminating multiple at-grade crossings along this area, thereby reducing the risk for vehicular collisions and accidents. Following this would be the improvement of the railroad operating system as well as paving rail access to customers along this area by allowing traffic delays and increasing track speed.
A sum of 1 million dollars was reallocated by the Fairbanks Metropolitan Area Transportation System but the total cost of this project has not yet been finalized and will be determined after the completion of its EA which is expected to be submitted by the end of 2011.
Extensive information about the Alaska Railroad Fairbanks and ARR Interior Alaska Capital Projects will be opened for a public discussion on January 25th, from 4:00 to 6:30 p.m. at the Alaska Railroad Depot, 1745 Johansen Expressway in Fairbanks.
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