Backshophoss wrote:Figure on CSX dropping the Port of Baltimore,if Howard street collapses on it's own,believe the Derailment/fire did more damage then what is
Report: CSX considering revival of Howard Street Tunnel Project?
With CSX dropping the project,any grant chances from the FEDs are gone.
American Shipper (Online)
By Elizabeth Landrum
December 21, 2017
Class I railroad company CSX met with members of Maryland’s congressional delegation and Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh on Tuesday to discuss the recently-stalled Howard Street Tunnel Project in Baltimore, according to local media source the Baltimore Sun.
The Howard Street Tunnel Project has been a multi-year investment endeavor by the State of Maryland and the City of Baltimore. Port of Baltimore officials have continually asked the federal government to approve applications for funding under the U.S. Department of Transportation’s FASTLANE grant program to help increase clearances in the Howard Street Tunnel and at several other locations along the CSX railroad in Baltimore in order to accommodate trains with containers stacked two high.
In July 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded grants totaling $759 million to 18 projects deemed critical freight and highway corridors, but the state of Maryland and CSX Transportation said in October they would reapply for the second round of federal FASTLANE grants to help complete the clearance increase for the Howard Street Tunnel in Baltimore.
However, last month, CSX notified Baltimore port authorities that the company would not be moving forward with the project, which was only explained to MDOT as the best "business decision." CSX's CEO at the time was Hunter Harrison, who suddenly passed away last week after complications from an illness. CSX’s acting CEO Jim Foote met with Maryland congressional delegates this week in his stead.
The company attributed the decision to back away from the Howard Street Tunnel expansion to an operating plan implemented in May by Harrison, and Foote has vowed to continue his agenda. Senator Ben Cardin, Md-D, said Foote repeated during the closed meeting that CSX does not believe the ability to double-stack containers through the tunnel is necessary, reported the Baltimore Sun. He said that, "the railroad discussed, in broad terms, a number of alternatives that it is considering. We expressed our disappointment — and that’s putting it mildly. The bottom line is [Foote] agreed to have an open mind," said Sen. Cardin to the Baltimore Sun.
“The people of Maryland and the city are feeling whiplashed because of their reversal,” said Sen. Chris Van Hollen to the Baltimore Sun. “The upside of the gathering was a willingness to take a fresh look at the facts, keep an open mind toward the possibility of reconsideration.