MDOT has announced the fifth annual call for grant applications to the Local Grade Crossing Surface Program. Applications are due September 25, 2020. As a reminder, the Local Grade Crossing Surface Program provides 60% state funding taken from “off-the-top” MTF, and requires a 40% railroad match for work on grade crossing surfaces: There is no expectation of financial participation by any local road agency.
Considering feedback received during the first four years of the program, the solicitation and selection process has been moved to early summer to allow greater opportunity for advance coordination with other planned highway and railroad capital projects.
Applicants should consider the following guidance when applying for a grant:
- Applications will be accepted if received via email or postmarked by September 25, 2020;
- Applications must be submitted by road agencies, in cooperation with a participating railroad partners;
- Applications must include detailed railroad estimates and updated vehicle traffic counts;
- Eligible project costs include materials, labor and equipment. Engineering costs are not eligible;
- Applications will be evaluated and projects should be selected/announced by late November; and
- Project selection will be in compliance with the criteria established by law.
All prospective projects require proof of 40% railroad participation and documentation that relevant traffic control plans have been approved by the affected road agency, so it is incumbent upon railroads and road agencies to work together to assure that applications are complete and accurate.
It should also be noted there are significant public advantages if a proposed project includes coordinated adjacent road work, as the entire crossing environment can be enhanced all at one time.
Application materials and instructions are available online at the MDOT Office of Rail web page, and a list of railroad contact information is available here. For a direct link to the application please click here.
Contact Kristian Foondle, Local Grade Crossing Program manager, MDOT Office of Rail, with questions at 517.335.3054 or [email protected].
John LaMacchia is the Assistant Director of State and Federal Affairs for the League handling transportation, infrastructure, energy and environment issues. He can be reached at [email protected] or 517-908-0303.