New spending deal near on rail consolidation

February 1, 2016

By Tim Landis, Business Editor, The State Journal-Register

City and county officials say a deal is near to get rail consolidation back on track in Springfield.Website Insert Coach Business Class Food Service copy

Unlike the agreement that unraveled in October when the city failed to win a $16 million federal grant, the latest pact would focus state spending on relocation of Union Pacific and Amtrak trains from Third Street to 10th Street without the federal funding contingency.

“I think we’re fairly close to a new deal. Some of the details are still being worked out,” said Sangamon County Board Chairman Andy Van Meter, a key supporter of the original plan.

Springfield and Sangamon County officials have been in discussions with the Illinois Department of Transportation on ways to focus state funding on 10th Street rail consolidation, while not complicating the federal government’s $1.1 billion contribution toward 110-mph Amtrak service between St. Louis and Chicago.

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