Indiana put forward for infrastructure grant
The US Department of Transportation has recommended that one Lake Michigan port receives a grant to increase its cargo handling and multimodal capabilities.
If successful, the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor will receive a discretionary grant of US$9.85 million, which will be put towards a $19.7 million expansion of its infrastructure.
"These investments in Northwest Indiana will allow the Port of Indiana to increase its multimodal freight-handling capabilities to help meet anticipated future demand," said Rich Cooper, CEO Ports of Indiana.
"This grant will permit us to further accelerate our investments to help attract new companies and new cargoes to the region."
The port is looking to construct a new 2.3-acre cargo terminal with multimodal connections for handling cargo transfers between ships, barges, rail cars and trucks.
In addition, 4.4 miles will be added to the port's existing 14-mile rail network. Two new rail yards will create rail storage for 165 rail cars, accommodate a 90-car unit train and provide rail car switching within the port, improving operating efficiencies for port companies.
Improvements to the west dock, including extending a retaining wall and paving a dock apron, will result in an additional 1,200 feet of usable dock space. The project scope also includes a new six-acre truck marshalling yard to relieve congestion along port roads.
A total of $850 million has been made available under the FASTLANE program, also called the "INFRA" grant funds program in 2017, of which $79 million was recommended for smaller projects.
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