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View Diary: Performer at Inaugural Party removed from stage (52 comments)

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  •  Highway money? (0+ / 0-)

    I don't think state government Highway Departments "pick up the tab for any ... overpasses, safety gates ..."

    Obviously all vehicles, very much including fuel-guzzling trucks, benefit greatly when grade crossings are replaced by flyovers. Then drivers need not wait impatiently for the trains to pass. And everyone is safer.

    But in every instance I know about, works separating train traffic from trucks and cars is paid by the railroads. Maybe with help from Amtrak, perhaps sometimes with a very little something from the local govt. But never, ever do the state Highway depts spend from the gasoline taxes for these mutual improvements to roads and railroads.

    The St Louis-Chicago is route being upgraded for 110-mph passenger trains, starting with about $1.5 billion or so from the stimulus funds. Every article I've read suggests that ALL grade separations and safety gates are being paid by that federal govt contribution, with zero dollars from thee Illinois Dept of Highways.

    Let me know of any specific examples otherwise.

    •  Sorry, you are wrong. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gerrilea

      When the DME expansion was planned from WY to the Mississippi River, the state and local govts were going to have to pay for the majority of basic upgrades, and anything fancy, beyond what you would expect beyond a bordertown in Texas, would have really minimal contribution fron RR.

       In other situations like Wichita, IIRC, the fed. govt and state paid for most of the elevated rail, in Reno, IIRC, local sales taxes paid for a majority of the chunnel, and I think the State of Ohio got stuck with most of the cost of rail consolidation.

      I'll go get my files for more specifics.

      •  Interesting (0+ / 0-)

        I figure the DME expansion was gonna be just one more boondoggle where taxpayer money is given to a corporation (corporations are people too -- rich ones!) in the name of industrial development and jobs. Looks like the taxpayers dodged the bullet with the abundant supply of gas pushing down coal prices.

        Meanwhile, both the Wichita elevated rail and the Reno chunnel, I'd say those were a special type of urban renewal, with much much more benefit to the cities than the usual one-off replacing a grade crossing with a flyover.

        Don't know what you mean about Ohio.

        But I take your point that sometimes highway money does get spent on these projects. I won't be so emphatic going forward. Thanks for the info.

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