U.S. DOT Announces $10 million TIGER Grant for Willmar Rail Connector and Industrial Access in Willmar

U.S. DOT Announces $10 million TIGER Grant for Willmar Rail Connector and Industrial Access in Willmar: Federal Railroad Administrator Sarah Feinberg announced on 13 November 2015 that the U.S. Department of Transportation will provide $10 million for the Willmar Rail Connector and Industrial Access project in Willmar, Minn. The project is one of 39 federally funded transportation projects in 34 states selected to receive a total of nearly $500 million under the Department’s Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) 2015 program. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced project selections for this round of TIGER grants on October 29.

The Department received 627 eligible applications from 50 states and several U.S. territories, including Tribal governments, requesting 20 times the $500 million available for the program, or $10.1 billion for needed transportation projects.

“Transportation is always about the future. If we’re just fixing today’s problems, we’ll fall further and further behind. We already know that a growing population and increasing freight traffic will require our system to do more,” said Secretary Foxx. “In this round of TIGER, we selected projects that focus on where the country’s transportation infrastructure needs to be in the future; ever safer, ever more innovative, and ever more targeted to open the floodgates of opportunity across America.”

This TIGER grant will support construction of a direct connection between the Marshall and Morris Subdivisions of the BNSF rail network eliminating the need for seven to 10 trains daily to pull into the railyard in downtown Willmar. The project also includes a new railroad spur west of Willmar, providing rail access to the city’s industrial park. The project is the last element of a long-standing local effort to improve the quality of life of Willmar residents and open up opportunities for economic growth.

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