New Mexico county awarded $4.6M grant for rail safety

March 5, 2020 GMT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico’s most populous county has been awarded a $4.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration for rail infrastructure and safety improvements.

The funding for Bernalillo County was announced Wednesday by the state’s congressional delegation. They say it’s part of a larger effort to grow trade and create new jobs. The improvements are aimed at boosting connectivity to businesses that are near the Albuquerque airport.

“The Sunport is an incredible resource for businesses and entrepreneurs in our state, but the connections from the Sunport are limited,” said U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland, D-New Mexico. “This investment will update rail connections so businesses have more convenient, safe access to trade and growth opportunities.”

The grant will fund the partial rehabilitation of the Kirtland Rail Spur and construct a half-mile of rail siding for Albuquerque’s rail system. The funding was appropriated by Congress in the last fiscal year for a program that leverages private, state and local investments to support rail safety enhancements, such as positive train control and rail integrity inspection systems.