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Expanding the Railways in Oklahoma?

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Oklahoma City may see new railways in the future.  The Oklahoma Department of Transportation has partnered with the Kansas Department of Transportation for a stimulus grand to improve and expand on the current railways.  Both departments have pledged $125,000 to this project.  The money would be used for several projects, but the one OKC residents will be most interested in is the plan to create an intercity passenger rail service that will connect Kansas City, OKC, and Fort Worth in Texas.  An additional $500,000 application has been submitted for this project.  The project is also being backed by the Northern Flyer Alliance, a group based in Wichita, Kansas

 

Currently, Oklahoma City and Fort Worth are connected by an Amtrak line.  If the project is funded, this line would be expanded.  The route would then run up through Wichita and finally end in Newton, where it would join up with the Southwest Chief line.  While the stimulus money will help, it will not fund the entire project—that will take around $25 million.  The Kansas Department of Transportation plans to submit a third application for an additional $10 million to fund crossing and signal improvements for the line between Oklahoma and Newton, Kansas. 

 

The applications are currently being reviewed by the Federal Railroad Administration, and the two state departments will know if their funding was approved by early October.

 

 

Wesley Fryer talks about the rumors of an OKC to Kansas City Amtrak line as it was first discussed in December of 2008.

 

More information about the proposed Amtrak line back from when it was first announced on the Granny Geek blog.

 

The Oklahoma Rail News blog has several posts related to the proposal

Tags: Events · General       

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