The federal government is giving $248.5 million in grant funds under the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) program.
The money will go toward a variety of state and local railroad infrastructure projects. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will administer the grants, which will fund 32 projects in 27 states.
“This $248.5 million federal investment will upgrade rail infrastructure and enhance safety on the tracks and at railroad crossings in rural and urban communities across America,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao said in a news release.
The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act authorized the CRISI Program to improve the safety, efficiency, and reliability of intercity passenger and freight rail systems. Rural projects, which have a minimum 25 percent funding requirement under the CRISI Program, received nearly 50 percent of the funds.
Of the 32 projects that were awarded grants, 15 are in Opportunity Zones. These zones were created to revitalize economically distressed communities using private investments.
“These grants support the economic vitality of our nation’s rural and urban communities all around the country,” FRA Administrator Ronald Batory said in a news release.