The Indiana Department of Transportation has unveiled a matching grant initiative aimed at railroad safety projects throughout the state. The Local Trax Rail Overpass Program will provide at least $125 million in funding, which was approved through the passage of the long-term infrastructure spending bill in 2017.
Local Trax provides state matching funds for cities, towns and counties throughout Indiana pursuing high-priority railroad grade separations, crossing closures and other safety enhancements at railroad intersections that include local roads. INDOT says the goal of the program is to encourage collaboration among the state, local governments, private businesses and railroads to increase safety, improve mobility and enhance quality of life among residents.
Governor Eric Holcomb announced the program Monday in Chesterton.
"Much like Community Crossings, Local Trax is an innovative approach to infrastructure funding that creates a partnership between the state and communities willing to put skin in the game toward improving their local roads," said Holcomb. "Eliminating at-grade rail crossings on local roads makes our transportation network safer, reduces congestion, and better connects our communities."
INDOT says it will begin accepting project proposals in May, which will continue through the end of August. The funding awards will be announced in late summer. To be eligible for a grant, local governments must provide 20 percent of funding for land acquisition and construction.
The department will host a series of public meetings throughout the month to provide program details and requirements and answer questions. Those meetings are scheduled for:
- Monday, April 9: 1 p.m. INDOT Greenfield District Office, 32 S. Broadway Street, Greenfield, IN 46140
- Wednesday, April 11: 1 p.m. INDOT Crawfordsville District Office, 41 West 300 North, Crawfordsville IN 47933
- Friday, April 13: 1 p.m. INDOT Seymour District Office, 185 Agrico Lane, Seymour, IN 47274
- Monday, April 16: 1 p.m. Central INDOT LaPorte District Office, 315 E. Boyd Blvd, LaPorte, IN 46350
- Wednesday, April 18: 1 p.m. INDOT Fort Wayne District Office, 5333 Hatfield Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46808
- Friday, April 20: 1 p.m. INDOT Vincennes District Office, 3650 South U.S. 41, Vincennes, IN 47591
You can learn more about Local Trax by clicking here.