WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The government is spending millions to reduce the number of train-vehicle crashes in three Kansas cities.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration announced it has awarded more than $27.5 million to the state of Kansas in the Railroad Crossing Elimination Grant Program.
Wellington will receive $8.8 million to build a corridor allowing trains to travel through the city without ever coming in contact with other traffic. The project will fund the development and construction for the elimination of all six grade crossings along the BNSF Railway. The City of Wellington and BNSF Railway will contribute a 36% non-federal match to the project. The route carries around 96 trains daily.
Emporia will receive $600,000 that will pay for a study on the possibilities of eliminating a dozen railroad crossings within a two-mile stretch of the city. BNSF Railway will partner with the City of Emporia in this study, and both will contribute a 50% total non-federal match. BNSF says the area sees about 82 trains daily.
In Olathe, the community will see $17,987,495 to eliminate an at-grade crossing at Woodland Road and Northgate Street and build a road overpass with a sidewalk that will span over BNSF Railway’s rail line. The new structure will provide a safer route to schools and neighborhoods, a direct bike/pedestrian connection to a trail system, and a direct connection to Interstate 35 and Kansas Highway 7. The City of Olathe and the Johnson County Assistance Road System fund will contribute a 53% non-federal match to the project.