Port of Ridgefield Rail Overpass Project Reaps National Rail Safety Grant Award

February 17, 2016

For Immediate Release

Contact: Brent Grening, CEO (360) 887-3873

Ridgefield, Wash. – The Port of Ridgefield announced that its Pioneer Street Railroad Overpass Project has been awarded $900,000 – nearly 10 percent of the funds available nationally from a U.S. Department of Transportation Railroad Safety Grant. Railroad Safety grant funding is administered through the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations, of which Washington State Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler is a member. She helped secure funds for the Railroad Safety Grants Program during the passage of the 2016 omnibus appropriations bill.

The Port of Ridgefield developed the rail safety grant application, which was then submitted on the port’s behalf by the Washington Department of Transportation. The Port of Ridgefield was in competition with 56 other applicants from around the country for a piece of the $10 million available.

The grant award is for the final phase of a three-phase rail overpass project that will allow safe passage to and from the port’s waterfront property and downtown Ridgefield. The project area is a shared rail corridor with over 50 passenger and freight trains each day, including two to three Bakken-sourced crude oil trains.  Herrera Beutler voiced her enthusiasm for the grant award to the port.

“The Port of Ridgefield should be applauded for spearheading this project that improves the livability, safety and opportunity for growth in this community,” Herrera Beutler said. “The current crossing is one of the most dangerous in Washington, and I’m pleased a federal grant is going to the project to increase safety and prevent its waterfront, new port development and boat launch from being interrupted by train crossing delays.”

Port of Ridgefield CEO Brent Grening said he is honored by the amount of the award as well as the work so many people put into making the award a reality.

“This project has many friends, without which we wouldn’t have received this grant award, including Congresswoman Herrera Buetler, the Washington Public Ports Association, Washington Department of Transportation and our longtime project partner, the City of Ridgefield,” Grening said.

The final phase of the Pioneer Street Rail Overpass project is currently in the design and permitting stage; construction is expected to commence summer 2017, and completion is anticipated by the end of 2018.

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The Port of Ridgefield, established in 1940 and with a district population of approximately 17,000, is located in the northern part of Clark County in southwest Washington State. The port district is divided by the rapidly expanding I-5 corridor known as the Discovery Corridor, with five freeway interchanges that provide easy access to many large tracts of undeveloped properties. The port district encompasses nearly 57 square miles, or 36,480 acres. The Port of Ridgefield is located at 111 Division St., Ridgefield, Wash., 98642. For more information call (360) 887-3873.

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