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PVRR Among Railroads to Receive Grants

BOSTON — MassDOT recently announced the awarding of five grants totaling more than $2 million for industrial rail projects as part of the 2015 Industrial Rail Access Program (IRAP). Among the grants awarded: $175,045 to Pioneer Valley Railroad for installation of new rail siding at Railroad Distribution Services facility in Westfield. The IRAP funding for the five projects is being matched by more than $1.7 million in private sector funds for a total $3.7 million investment in freight rail improvements in the third year of the IRAP program. Created as part of the 2012 Transportation Bond Bill, IRAP provides grants to railroads, rail shippers and municipalities that identify a public benefit gained through improved rail transportation usage or economic growth that would be realized through improved access to rail assets. “The IRAP program is an example of government working with the private sector to solve a problem. We are glad to have the opportunity to improve rail access and support industrial uses. It is truly a “win-win,” said Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack. The five 2015 IRAP recipients represent a variety of projects meeting the program objective of improving the rail network while boosting economic growth.

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