Aberdeen Carolina & Western Railway at work near the Perdue Farms feed mill in Candor. 

Seventeen short line railroads will soon be making improvements to their infrastructure, thanks to approximately $16.7 million in matching grant funds being awarded as part of the N.C. Department of Transportation’s Freight Rail and Rail Crossing Safety Improvement program (FRRCSI).

Several short line railroads that serve the Sandhills received awards, including Aberdeen Carolina & Western Railway, Aberdeen & Rockfish, Laurinburg & Southern Railroad, Red Springs & Northern Railroad.

FRRCSI supports rail infrastructure health, safety and performance throughout the state, enabling NCDOT to partner with rail companies on improvement projects. This partnership helps railroads meet customer needs in an efficient and cost-effective manner while also preparing them for growing service demands and partnerships with new businesses and industries across the state.

The projects will provide more than $32 million in rail infrastructure improvements statewide. Funding and project estimated total costs, includes railroad matching funds.

Aberdeen Carolina and Western Railway received three grants for projects that impact multiple counties in its service area, including:

A $3 million project to construct two phases of track spur and storage at the ACWR shop facility in Candor, construct two double-ended passing sidings and install new crossties in various locations in Moore and Montgomery counties.

A $9.1 million project to construct and improve nearly 32,000-feet of track and install new crossties in various locations over 21-miles of track in Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Stanly, Montgomery and Moore counties. Additional project components include construction of a storage siding track, three double-ended sidings, an industrial spur and a lead track in a switching yard. A crossover and a track for fueling and sanding will be extended, plus two culverts will be improved.

A $1.2 million project to construct a new rail siding extension, a new rail yard and improve a highway-rail grade crossing in Stanly County.

In addition, Aberdeen and Rockfish Railroad received funding for an $800,000 project to install new rail and crossties, surfacing and tamping, and make highway-rail crossing surface upgrades on rail corridor where heavy loads are transported in Hoke County.

Laurinburg and Southern Railroad received funding for a $1 million project to replace and upgrade rail, upgrade switches and improve crossing surfaces in Scotland County.

Red Springs and Northern Railroad received funding for a $400,000 project to install new crossties, culverts and surface track in Robeson County.

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