Saturday, May 9, 2009

"Who knows? We can dream."

POW V continues to talk, people continue to listen, now it seems some are beginning to take notice, and take action...

Stimulus Money To Improve Rails In Jefferson County
Posted: 5:37 pm EDT April 14, 2009Updated: 7:04 pm EDT April 14, 2009

Ohio Transportation Stimulus funds will be used to improve the Gould Tunnel outside Mingo Junction in Jefferson County.

Mike Paprocki with The Brooke Hancock Jefferson Metropolitan Planning Commission said, "It's an important link from the rail yard. It connects Norfolk Southern Railroad and Ohio Central Railroad. That services a lot of coal mines and trains that go to the Apex mine."
The $5 million in stimulus will be used to improve the tunnel because it leaks and has drainage problems.

"This ought to put about 40 people to work," said Paprocki. "It's a big help to the railroads in our area. They're making resurgence." The exact solution isn't clear yet because Paprocki said there are several different options state crews could take. "They could lower the bed and raise the clearance because it has clearance issues. The tunnel will not take double-stacked cars. Or, they could line it and keep it as is," said Paprocki.

With improvements on the way, leaders have high hopes for the future including the possibility that one day the tracks could carry passenger trains. "This could be used as a critical link between Pittsburgh and Columbus for high-speed rail through our area," said Paprocki. "Who knows? We can dream."

There is no timeline in place as to when work on the Gould Tunnel could start.
Officials with the Ohio Railroad development Commission said improvements will be on the existing structure. Jefferson County isn't the only area that will get rail improvements.
More than $1 million in stimulus funds is expected for rail work in Harrison County at Miller Station.

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