VRS: B.U.I.L.D. Bucks Will Up 31 Bridges to 286k

Most of the Bridges Along Key Hoosick Feeder Line will be Replaced or Rehabilitated to Carry 286k Cars

07 December, Burlington VT  Vermont Agency of Transportation’s Vermont Regional Freight Rail Corridor Upgrade Project was awarded $20,000,000 toward a ~$32 million (total) project to upgrade 31 railroad bridges to the national 286K standard. VRS and VTrans will contribute the additional ~$12 million to the project. {USDOT Announcement, 11.Dec.2018}


The bridges are spread along the southern 53-mile section of the VRS Western Corridor, between Rutland-Bennington-Hoosick (NY). Without the upgrades, the line would need to close to service by 2025 {USDOT 2018 BUILD Grants Fact Sheet}.


The project is a good example of how competitive freight rail infrastructure improves public safety and reduces road maintenance costs. The primary freight transportation alternative is US Route 7, a rural road that is a two-lane, undivided road for most of its length in the state. Inherently extreme road wear is aggravated by trucks extreme, and common winter fog/snow/ice conditions make car-truck interaction often too close for comfort.

Southwest Vermont: Southern section (Rutland – Bennington – Hoosick) of the VRS Western Corridor, showing rebuild/rehab plans for 31 bridges. {USDOT 2018 BUILD Grants Fact Sheet; annotated by ANRP }.