Ohio Railroad Development Commission awards grants to three railroads

Ohio Railroad Development Commission LogoCOLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio Railroad Development Commission has announced grants totaling more than $1.65 million for infrastructure projects for the Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway, East Ohio Valley Railway and Camp Chase Railway.

These grants are in addition to the previously announced grant of more than $1.23 million for RJ Corman’s Western Ohio lines (see “Two RJ Corman Ohio Lines Receive State Grant…” Trains News Wire, May 21, 2024). Each grant will be accompanied by equal funding from the beneficiary railroad.

Wheeling & Lake Erie will receive a $750,000 grant for new siding at its River Subdivision in Rayland, Ohio, that will add space for 81 cars near an interchange with CSX in Benwood, W.Va., and open space at its Mingo. Junction yard for customers in Steubenville, Ohio who are increasing their rail volume.

“W&LE has been making necessary investments and providing rail services that have attracted more shippers and helped reduce logistics costs for area businesses,” Matthew Dietrich, executive director of the rail commission, said in a news release. . “This project will help them continue that trend by making the rail line more efficient, which we hope will also attract even more businesses to the area.”

The Eastern Ohio Valley will receive $255,000 to rehabilitate four private grade crossings. The railroad serves the Hannibal Industrial Park and Long Ridge Energy Prospect near Hannibal, Ohio, and in June will expand its operations by leasing 18 miles of track from Norfolk Southern (see “Transtar’s East Ohio Valley Railway to grow,” News Wire, May 7, 2024).

“East Ohio Valley Railway is extremely grateful for the support of the Ohio Railroad Development Commission, which supports the safety and efficiency of Transtar’s newest railroad. “We are excited to partner with ORDC to improve economic growth in eastern Ohio,” Transtar CEO Jonathan G. Carnes said in a news release.

Camp Chase Railway will receive $654,410.65 for the rehabilitation of its line from Galloway to Lilly Chapel, as well as the reconstruction of three grade crossings. For many years the western part of the line was used only for wagon storage, but recently a siding near Lilly Chapel has been used for the transshipment of tall and wide loads. The rehabilitation will restore the track to FRA Class 1 standards.

“ORDC’s commitment to improving short line rail infrastructure in the state has paved the way for safer and more efficient rail operations, improving connectivity and fostering economic growth,” said Todd Marklin, the company’s vice president of engineering. Camp Chase’s parent company, Pinsly Railroad Co., said in a news release.