Freight rail improvement projects

Tuesday, June 07, 2016
Freight rail improvement projects

Applications are now being accepted for state-funded grants and loans for projects that improve freight rail services in Washington. Funds will be available in July 2017.

Railroads, port districts, rail districts, private companies and local governments are eligible to apply for part of $12.04 million in grants and loans available through two programs administered through the Washington State Department of Transportation. The programs help freight rail systems that create family-wage jobs as well as improve overall freight mobility.

The Freight Rail Investment Bank provides loans to small public projects. The investment bank has $5 million available in loans. Meanwhile, the Freight Rail Assistance Program provides grants to both public and private projects, specifically projects strategically important to local communities and the state. This program has $7.04 million available for grants, a portion of which comes from the Connecting Washington revenue package passed by the state Legislature.

Projects selected for funding will best demonstrate how freight rail shipping eases congestion on busy highways, reduces wear and tear on state roads, strengthens the state’s economy through domestic and international trade, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

Applications for both programs are due Friday, July 15.