ZANESVILLE, Oh – The Muskingum County Commissioner met with GoRail Thursday morning.
Together, they discussed new federal grants and programs to help improve railroads throughout the area.
One of the key topics of discussion was federal grants made available by a bipartisan infrastructure law passed last year.
GoRail Assistant Vice President of Field Operations, Michael Gaynor says the funds help improve safety and economic development of such a key economic driver for everything from agriculture to international trade.
“The private railroads invest record amounts of funding into the infrastructure. Today’s railroad is the safest that the rail network has ever been. We look at statistics and so, continuing to invest in the rail infrastructure just helps to ensure that our local employers have the supply chains that they need to connect their companies to the global markets,” Gaynor explained.
The railroad bridge over Linden Avenue at the Y-Bridge was also discussed in regards to a new federal program to help with grade separation projects to ensure proper separation between the railway and road, which has become increasingly problematic due to its low clearance
Gaynor says they hope to work with local officials to look into the program further and hopefully improve that particular bridge.
“There’s already a grade separation that exists, but that separation is very low and the bridge is often struck, in fact, the commissioner said two to three times a week that bridge is struck and so we think that this new federal program could be an avenue of funding to help improve that crossing and make it more functional and more safe for the community,” he said
He adds that moving freight by train is 75% more fuel efficient than using truck transport and moving goods by rail ultimately decreases highway traffic for us.
For more information about GoRail and their initiatives here in Ohio, you can visit gorail.org/state/ohio