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NRC Bulletin - May 5, 2014
NRC Welcomes New Member
Holubar Construction Company, Inc. 
NRC Toolbox Talks


The NRC Safety Committee has revised and updated the NRC's Toolbox Talks. They are available for download at:


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Table of Contents


2014 NRC Rail Construction & Maintenance Equipment Auction Yields Record Auction Sale 


Now Accepting Donations to the 2014 NRC Scholarship Program 


NRC Board Member and Executive Director Named Progressive Railroading "Rising Stars


Seneca County, NY Industrial Development Agency: Army Depot RFP, Due May 16


Massachusetts DOT Awards Seven Grants for Freight Rail Projects 


NYMTA Awards $628m for Tunnels, Caverns Project 

LACMTA's Board Awards Regional Connector Contract 

Charlotte Council Authorizes Contracts for LYNX Blue Line Projects 

Sound Transit to Administer Track and Signal Upgrades for New Amtrak Service 

Houston's METRO Secures $187m for Light Rail Projects 


MWAA Receives $1.9b TIFIA Loan Approval for Silver Line  

Chicago Transit Authority to Obtain $79m TIFIA Loan for Transit Terminal 

Oregon TriMet Proposes Rail Infrastructure, Service Improvements in FY2015 

Illinois Governor Proposes $8.6b Transportation Construction Program 

RailWorks Corporation Names New VP of US Track Operations 


Auction2014 NRC Rail Construction & Maintenance Equipment Auction Yields Record Auction Sale


The NRC's Annual Railroad Construction and Maintenance Equipment Auction was held on Thursday, May 1st at the Quality Track Equipment facility in Austinburg, Ohio. Quality Track Equipment, a division of Delta Railroad Construction, were gracious hosts at their newly opened rehab facility. Thomas Blackmon, Jr. of Blackmon Auctions and his team did an outstanding job of running the auction proceedings. 


The auction was a huge success with a record of $1m of equipment auctioned to on-site and online bidders. Consignors sold around 250 pieces of rail construction equipment to dozens of bidders from all over the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Auctioned items ranged from pallets of spare parts to backhoes, ballast regulators, grapples, hi-rail trucks, rail heaters, rail threaders, rail saws, speed swings, spike drivers & pullers, tampers, and trailers. High profile pieces auctioned included a 7700 Tamper and a TRIPP tie remover/inserter. 


Along with consignments from dozens of contractors, suppliers, and railroads, equipment donations to the NRC Auction this year were a backhoe from Balfour Beatty Rail, and a hi rail trailer and light plant tower from Delta Railroad Construction. Funds from these donations will go to the NRC Safety & Education Training program, which will allow the NRC to continually strengthen its efforts to ensure the safety of everyone in the rail industry.


It's not too early to start making plans to consign or donate equipment for the 2015 NRC Auction next year. Please feel free to call the NRC office at (202) 715-1247 or visit for more information.

NRCScholarshipNow Accepting Donations to the 2014 NRC Scholarship Program

The 2014 NRC Scholarship Program will be made available again this year to children and grandchildren of NRC members in memoriam of Vinnie Vaccarello (NRC Board Member, Co-President of All Railroad Services Corp.) and Patsy Crisafi (NRC Safety Committee Member, Executive Vice President of Roadway Worker Training, Inc.) 


The application and criteria will be released on July 1, 2014 via NRC bulletin. The NRC is asking for donations from our members and friends of Vinnie and Patsy to continue to fund this Program. Contributions made to the fund is matched dollar-for-dollar by the NRC. 


To make a donation to the NRC Scholarship Program, please make checks payable to "NRC Scholarship Fund" and send to: NRC 500 New Jersey Ave, NW Suite 400, Washington, DC 20001 


The NRC would like to acknowledge and thank those companies and individuals that have contributed funds to initiate and support this valuable program: Roadway Worker Training Land Clearing Specialists, Inc. Van R. Sorrells Richard & Nancy Zemencik Thomas & Lyria Lee William & Karen Tarvin 


For questions regarding the NRC Scholarship Program, contact Ashley Bosch at [email protected] / 202-715-1247 For more information on the NRC Scholarship Program, visit:

RisingStarsNRC Board Member and Executive Director Named Progressive Railroading's 2014 "Rising Stars"

Two NRC names made the list of 20 individuals selected by Progressive Railroading's editorial staff as "Rising Stars" of North America's railroad industry for 2014. NRC Board Member Daniel Stout, of STX Corp, and NRC Executive Director Chuck Baker were selected as a part of this year's class.

The magazine defines a "Rising Star" as someone under the age of 40 who has made, or is making, a positive impact on his or her company, organization, department or team, and is viewed by others - peers, colleagues, supervisors, clients or associates - as an up-and-coming leader in the rail industry.

The Rising Stars for 2014 and the organizations they work for are:

  • Chuck Baker, National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (Chambers, Conlon & Hartwell L.L.C.)
  • Joshua Bendyk, VHB
  • Jennifer Bergener, Orange County Transportation Authority
  • Jesse Chalich, Northern Plains Railroad
  • Roquita Coleman, CN
  • Elisa Davies, Union Pacific Railroad
  • Kevin Day, CN
  • Kari Gonzales, Transportation Technology Center Inc.
  • Jessica Hawkins Allen, Amtrak
  • Jesse Heimowitz, MTA Long Island Rail Road
  • Christine Howard, Union Pacific Railroad
  • Mark Kelehan, Wolfe Research Securities
  • Jessica Kramer Havens, Diesel Supply Co.
  • John Manutes, Federal Railroad Administration
  • Michael Nicoletti, Indiana Harbor Belt Railroad Co.
  • Adam Nordstrom, Chambers, Conlon & Hartwell
  • Rachael Peterson, Watco Cos. L.L.C.
  • Kristine Storm, Genesee & Wyoming Inc.
  • Daniel Stout, STX Corp.
  • Petra Todorovich Messick, Amtrak 


Source: Progressive Railroading


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SenecaCountyRFPSeneca County, NY Industrial Development Agency: Army Depot RFP, Due May 16


The Seneca County Industrial Development Agency (SCIDA) is soliciting Requests for Proposal for Rail-Centric Site Uses for the Former Seneca Army Depot. The SCIDA intends to support the development, management and operation of logistics related enterprises at the Depot to qualified third parties who have expertise in developing, operating, and managing rail-centric businesses including terminals, industrial parks and other rail-related businesses as well as businesses which require rail service.


The key dates in the RFP schedule are as follows:


-        May 16, 2014: Statement of Interest

-        Week of May 19, 2014: Discussions with interested parties

-        June 6, 2014: Proposal due date

-        Week of June 23rd, 2014: Interviews with Proposers

-        July 11th, 2014: Preliminary Operator Selection

-        July 14th - July 30, 2014: Contract Negotiations & Finalization

-        August 7, 2014: IDA board approval


For more information please see the full RFP at Seneca County Army Depot RFP.pdf


Source: SCIDA


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MassDOTMassachusetts DOT Awards Seven Grants for Freight Rail Projects


On April 14, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) awarded seven grants totaling $2.5m for freight rail projects as part of the 2014 Industrial Rail Access Program (IRAP). 

The state funding will be matched by more than $1.9m in private-sector investments for the projects. Created as part of a 2012 transportation bond bill, IRAP provides grants to railroads, rail shippers and municipalities for projects that improve the use of the state's rail transportation network or enhance economic growth through rail access.


The seven recipients, grant amounts and projects are:

  • Omnova Solutions- $500K:  Fitchburg- 123 Industrial Park Rail Siding Phase II rehabilitation on Pan Am Southern
  • New England Central Railroad- $499K:  Palmer- Industrial Park Freight Capacity Expansion Project
  • North East Refrigerated Terminals- $475K: Taunton- Mass Coastal RR siding rehabilitation & rail to trailer cross docking facility
  • PCA Systems/Holland Chemical - $351K: Adams- rail siding, unloading system and storage shelter with road crossing on Pan Am Southern RR
  • Pioneer Valley Railroad- $310K:  Westfield- Easthampton Mainline Yard Capacity Project 
  • Horizon Milling- $240K: Ayer- upgrade existing "loop" track serving Nemco Way Industrial Park- Cargill/Horizon Milling & Catania Spagna in Ayer off Pan Am Freight mainline
  • Lenox Valley Waste Transfer Facility- $189K:  Lenox- rail siding extension and railcar loading/staging transfer station improvements on Housatonic RR

Sources: MassDOT, Progressive Railroading


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NYMTANYMTA Awards $628m for Tunnels, Caverns Project

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced that it awarded two contracts valued at $628m to contractors that will line more than 10,000 linear feet of newly excavated tunnels with permanent structural concrete walls, and install complex communications systems in Grand Central Terminal's future Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) concourse.

The first contract, worth $333.6m, with options leading to a total of $550.4 million, was awarded to Tutor Perini Corp. to complete communications systems that will be used by the public and employees in the concourse, and infrastructure support systems. The communications systems include telephone, two-way radio, public address, digital signage and fire detection. The infrastructure support systems include tunnel ventilation, tunnel drainage, tunnel lighting, plumbing and fire protection.

The second contract, valued at $294.2m, was awarded to Frontier-Kemper Constructors to build permanent structural concrete lining, including embedded mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems, on the newly excavated tunnels north of Grand Central Terminal.

Frontier-Kemper also will rehabilitate the segment of the 63rd Street Tunnel under the East River that will be used by LIRR trains. In addition, the firm will complete work on the underground portions of two facilities, located at 50th Street and 55th Street, which will ventilate the tunnels and cavern that will house the new LIRR station at Grand Central.


Sources: NYMTA, Progressive Railroading
LACMTALACMTA's Board Awards Regional Connector Contract


The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority's (LACMTA) board awarded a $927.2m contract to Regional Connector Constructors to design and build the Regional Connector Transit Corridor light-rail line. Regional Connector Constructors is a joint venture between Skanska USA Civil West California District Inc. and Traylor Brothers Inc.


The board also approved an additional $39.9m for the Regional Connector Life-of-Project budget for a total of $1.42b.

The Regional Connector project will complete a 1.9-mile gap connecting the Metro Gold Line with the Blue and Expo lines by providing a direct connection with three new stations planned for 1st Street/Central Avenue, 2nd Street/Broadway and 2nd Place/Hope Street in downtown Los Angeles.

Of the four bids received, Skanska/Traylor had the overall highest ranking, including the highest technical score and highest evaluated score for pricing, although it was $39m higher than the lowest bid, based on criteria in the request for proposals. In their recommendation of the contract, LACMTA staff noted that Skanska/Traylor indicated they plan to finish construction 115 days early and will absorb the cost of any delays caused by LACMTA or subcontractors.

The Regional Connector is expected to be completed in 2020.

Another contract for the $2.8-billion Westside subway extension to La Cienega Boulevard, will be awarded over the summer. 


Sources: Progressive Railroading LACMTA, LA Times


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CharlotteNCCharlotte Council Authorizes Contracts for LYNX Blue Line Projects


On March 7, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) awarded a $2.6b, eight-year contract to Keolis North America to manage and maintain the agency's commuter rail service. The contract represents the largest public transportation contract in the United States. The agreement includes an option for two additional two year extensions. If granted, the contract's total value would rise to $4.2b over 12 years. Keolis will operate and manage MBTA under Keolis Commuter Services.


The Charlotte City Council authorized $249.8m for construction related to the Charlotte Area Transit System's (CATS) LYNX Blue Line Extension (BLE) and Blue Line Capacity project. This will extend the LYNX light-rail line 9.3 miles from Uptown Charlotte to the UNC Charlotte campus, and include 11 stations and four parking facilities.

The council approved a $119m contract with Lane Construction Corp. for civil construction services for the BLE from Old Concord Road to the University of North Carolina Charlotte. Work includes building bridges, arterial roadways and retaining walls; creation of erosion control; sewer and water main installation and drainage; and traffic signals and traffic control. Operations are scheduled to begin on the line in spring 2017.

Additionally, a $130.8m contract, which covers the track and system construction of the BLE at $114m, was awarded to Balfour Beatty Infrastructure Inc. The company will be responsible for the installation of light-rail track, train control and signal systems, communications systems, and overhead catenary and traction-power systems.

The remaining $16.4m of the contract will go toward expansion of platforms and systems on the current LYNX Blue Line. Platforms will be expanded to accommodate three-car trains at the Interstate 485/South Boulevard, Stonewall and Seventh Street stations. Upgrades also will be made to the communications, power, train control and signal systems to run the longer train.


CATS and the City of Charlotte received an $18 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery III (TIGER III) grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation to assist with the capacity enhancements along the LYNX Blue Line.


Sources: Progressive Railroading, CATS


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SoundTransitSound Transit to Administer Track and Signal Upgrades for New Amtrak Service


The Sound Transit Board has agreed to help implement improvements to Amtrak passenger rail service between Portland, OR and Vancouver, BC, Canada. 


Under the contract, Sound Transit will manage construction activities for Washington State Department of Transportation's (WSDOT) Point Defiance Bypass project between Nisqually and Tacoma, a role that will minimize impacts to Sounder commuter rail service and help complete the work efficiently.


The agreements outline WSDOT's coverage of all capital costs for the bypass project while providing Sound Transit up to $34m in federal funding toward its recently-completed D to M Street track and signal improvements project. The agreements also establish parameters for the operations of Sounder and Amtrak trains on the corridor and for Sound Transit's maintenance of the tracks.


Sources: RT&S, WSDOT


HoustonHouston's METRO Secures $187m for Light Rail Projects

The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO) secured access to $187.3m from the federal government for the North and Southeast light-rail lines in Houston.


$93m of funds are for the North Line, which opened in December 2013. The remaining $93 m for the Southeast Line is slated to open later in 2014.


These funds were announced by DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx and Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee and comprise the final portion of a grant agreement federal officials signed in 2011.


Source: Progressive Railroading


MWAAMWAA Receives $1.9b TIFIA Loan Approval for Silver Line 

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) has received final approval for a nearly $1.9 billion low-interest, long-term Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan for the Dulles Metrorail Project. This loan is the largest in the TIFIA program's history.


The loan is expected to close in the coming weeks and will allow the MWAA and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) to proceed with its construction plans for phase two of the project. MWAA is the lead agency in constructing the 23-mile extension of the existing WMATA system from East Falls Church to Dulles International Airport and beyond into Loudoun County.

Source: RT&S, MWAA

ChicagoTIFIAChicago Transit Authority to Obtain $79m TIFIA Loan for Transit Terminal


USDOT announced the closing of a $79m Transportation Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan to the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) for the 95th Street bus and rail project.

The project calls for rehabilitating the existing 45-year-old terminal into an expanded and modern facility. The Dan Ryan Branch is being fully reconstructed. Improvements to the terminal will mean better bus and rail connections and reduced travel congestion and delays. The 9.4-mile Dan Ryan Branch of the CTA Red Line ends at the 95th Street Terminal.

The loan will go toward the $240m total cost of the project. The project also received a $20 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER IV) grant in 2012 from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Planned improvements will include increased lighting and security cameras, wider walkways, a pedestrian bridge, full wheel-chair accessibility, improved bus maneuverability and other design amenities lacking in the existing facility.


Sources: Progressive Railroading, USDOT, CTA


 OregonOregon TriMet Proposes Rail Infrastructure, Service Improvements in FY2015


The Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon's (TriMet) board approved a proposed FY2015 budget that calls for more investment in rail infrastructure and improved service.

The document outlines total operating requirements of $493.5m and capital requirements of $113.7m. Light-rail programs would be budgeted at $113.7 million and funded by federal grants, state and local dollars, and TriMet bond proceeds. The budget would provide $53 million to maintain and improve the overall rail system.


Source: Progressive Railroading

 ILgovIllinois Governor Proposes $8.6b Transportation Construction Program


Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn unveiled a six-year, $8.6b construction program that will improve roads and bridges throughout Illinois while making major investments in public transportation.

The plan includes $1.85b for public transportation with funds earmarked for: 


  • $585.1m for Metra to purchase up to 160 Electric Highliner passenger cars; 
  • $222m to provide new intercity passenger-rail service between Chicago and Moline, as part of the Chicago-Quad Cities-Iowa City corridor; 
  • $132.6m for the Englewood Flyover, which is part of the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency, or CREATE, program; and
  • $60m to re-establish passenger-rail service in the Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque corridor, as well as build a new station in South Elgin.  

The fiscal years 2015-2020 highway improvement program will improve 1,845 miles of highway and replace or rehabilitate 384 bridges across Illinois. The entire program is anticipated to be funded with $6.99b in federal funds, $1.16b in state dollars, and $450m from local sources. For fiscal-year 2015, which begins July 1, Quinn has allocated $1.85b for public transportation.


Sources: Progressive Railroading, Office of the Governor of Illinois, IDOT


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RailWorksRailWorks Corporation Names New VP of US Track Operations


On April 21, RailWorks announced John Young as the executive vice president with the responsibility for the company's US track operations. Young will lead RailWorks' U.S. track operations, which provide track construction, maintenance and rehabilitation services throughout the United States and include RailWorks Track Services Inc. and RailWorks Track Systems Inc.


Young brings experience in transportation and heavy civil works projects developed over the past 20 years working for major contractors, including Kiewit and Zachry Construction. He most recently served as Senior Vice President at Zachry Construction, a heavy and building construction contractor based in San Antonio, Texas.


Source: RailWorks

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