FLORIDA POLITICS: Broward County and Fort Lauderdale will get $15.7 million to reduce train-vehicle collisions and blocked rail crossings, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s Office announced.
“I want to deliver safer, speedier travel and cut down commute times in South Florida, and that requires an across government effort, so I’m proud that President Biden and Congress partnered to deliver that help to our community,” Wasserman Schultz said.
It’s the first round of funding from $570 million allocated through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act’s new Railroad Crossing Elimination Grant Program, the Weston Democrat’s Office said.
“I want to deliver safer, speedier travel and cut down commute times in South Florida, and that requires an across government effort, so I’m proud that President Biden and Congress partnered to deliver that help to our community,” Wasserman Schultz said. “These rail improvement grants will help our community save lives and arrive to work, school and shops more swiftly. That’s why I did not hesitate to write to Secretary Pete Buttigieg urging him to fund Broward County’s application.”
It’s going to address issues along the rail that the area’s new high-speed rail, Brightline, travels. Deaths along these tracks earned Brightline the moniker of the deadliest train in the country because it averaged one death for every 37,000 miles traveled.
The bulk of the money — $15.4 million — goes to the Broward County Sealed Corridor Project to install exit gates and medians at 21 crossings along Florida East Coast Railway’s rail line, a freight corridor shared with Brightline’s passenger service. The Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization, along with Dania Beach, Wilton Manors, Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale Beach, Hollywood and Pompano Beach, will contribute a 20% non-federal match.
Another $280,000 is going to the city of Fort Lauderdale’s Railroad Safety and Congestion Analysis.
This comes on top of $25 million in federal funding awarded last August for safety improvements to Brightline’s rail corridor between Miami-Dade and Brevard counties.
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