A $10 billion program to upgrade railroads
New railroads have been announced to receive billions of dollars in funding to modernize and expand their systems.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has announced it will award a $10.6 billion contract to upgrade and expand existing railroads, according to The Next News.
In a press release announcing the funding, DOT said that the new railroads will “support the Nation’s critical infrastructure.”
The DOT awarded the contract to an international consortium of firms, including Siemens, TECO and U.K.-based firm Arup.
The consortium will include several national and regional railroads and an international group of railroads.
The new rail projects include the $5.9 billion project to improve the track of the Northeast Corridor in New York, as well as $4.4 billion in funding for the expansion of the Eastern Corridor, which runs from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. New York and Washington are among the regions that are among a group of 28 participating states in the federal “Highway Priority Infrastructure” program.
Under the program, DOT is providing funding to states to “provide infrastructure for economic development, environmental protection, transportation, transportation safety and other critical transportation needs.”
DOT has also announced a new contract with the U.N. Environment Program to “support efforts to increase access to and from the United States.”
is the United Nations agency that administers the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change, which outlines global climate change, including emissions reduction targets.
The project, titled “New New Roads,” will be managed by the U-N Environment Program.
The plan will see funding provided to all 50 states for “new road construction and improvement, to increase rail capacity, and to improve infrastructure, including improved intermodal service and intermodality connections, including new and expanded rail routes.”
According to The New York Times, the consortium will also work with private companies to make the new roads “more environmentally friendly.”
The plan was first reported by The New Yorker, but was subsequently confirmed by DOT.
The company that will administer the project will be private company RYDER, which was recently acquired by Siemens for $2.2 billion.
RYder, which is a subsidiary of Germany’s ThyssenKrupp, is one of the largest industrial railroads in the world.
In 2016, RYTER announced it would close its Norfolk Southern division and consolidate its operations with the company’s Norfolk Southern subsidiary.
In February 2017, RYR announced it was acquiring a joint venture from French company CNR Group for $1.4 trillion.
CNR has since been renamed CNR-France and is the largest private rail company in France.
According to Bloomberg Businessweek, CNR said in a statement it was “notifying its shareholders that the company would be selling its interest in Norfolk Southern in 2019 and is preparing to complete the purchase of CNR and CNR France, the majority of which are operated by RYR.”
RYR’s Norfolk South division, however, is the subject of controversy over its operations.
In 2014, a federal investigation found that the railroad’s diesel-powered locomotives emitted toxic levels of mercury, arsenic and lead, among other contaminants.
The federal agency also found that Norfolk Southern failed to properly report the amount of lead that had been found in its diesel cars.
The EPA and the Department of Labor have both investigated RYR over the issue.
The investigation also found “that the company had not properly tested its diesel locomotivments for lead and arsenic” since 2009, according the New York Daily News.
Additionally, the federal government found that “the railroad failed to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act, the National Labor Relations Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act.”
According the Wall Street Journal, the Department Of Labor is investigating the company over its ties to the North Star Diesel plant in Tennessee, which produces high-efficiency diesel engines for locomotors and trucks.
The report said that “several RYR employees” were also found to have worked at the plant.
The department found that RYR had “systemically failed to prevent the poisoning of workers, including one employee who was found dead in a toxic waste dump after being exposed to lead and mercury from a diesel engine.”
The agency is also investigating RYR “for possible violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act, including violations of hazardous material safety standards, and a host of other labor laws.”