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Oregon State Rail Plan Update

State Rail Plan: Public Review Draft

The Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) released the Draft State Rail Plan for its formal public review period (see Public Review Fact Sheet for details).

The Public Review Period ran from April 18 to June 20, 2014 and is now closed. For questions, contact Michael Rock

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Background

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) developed the first State Rail Plan in 1978, and most recently the Agency updated it in 2001. The Rail Plan is a state modal transportation plan under the 2006 Oregon Transportation Plan (OTP) and a key element of Oregon's transportation planning program. The Rail Plan and other statewide transportation modal plans (e.g. Oregon Public Transportation Plan) and topic plans (e.g. Oregon Freight Plan) further define and implement the OTP's goals, policies and strategies for managing, developing and investing in Oregon's transportation system.

The 2008 Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act (PRIIA) increased the level of state involvement in rail transportation and rail planning. PRIIA requires states to produce and update a state rail plan to establish policy, priorities and implementation strategies for freight and passenger rail transportation.
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Steering Committee and Plan Objectives

A Steering Committee, appointed by ODOT's Director, represents key stakeholders and subject experts and will help produce a comprehensive, long-range and strategic Rail Plan for Oregon that:
  • Sets forth state policy involving freight and passenger rail, including commuter rail operations,
  • Identifies statewide rail policies, programs, strategies and potential funding sources,
  • Presents strategies to enhance rail service in the state that benefits the public, including improvements in connectivity to transit and other modes of transportation,
  • Serves as the policy basis for federal and state rail investments throughout Oregon.
Read more information on the Steering Committee including meeting dates, locations, and materials.
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Consultation and Input

Oregon State Rail Plan development will be a closely coordinated activity between the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC), ODOT, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), stakeholders and the public. Input on the Rail Plan is welcome at any time through the staff contacts provided below. A formal public review and comment period for the draft Rail Plan will take place prior to finalizing the recommendations. ODOT staff anticipates having the updated State Rail Plan ready for OTC consideration and potential adoption in mid-2014.
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Relationship to Other Rail Projects

While the two projects are being coordinated, development of the State Rail Plan is a separate effort from the Oregon Passenger Rail Project currently studying ways to improve intercity passenger rail service along the Portland to Eugene Corridor. The State Rail Plan will look at policies, priorities, challenges and opportunities for the rail system statewide. The Oregon Passenger Rail Project is more detailed and focuses on important decisions that will result in a Tier 1 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Willamette Valley corridor.

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Contacts

Staff involvement in State Rail Plan development is a joint effort between the ODOT Rail and Public Transit Division and ODOT's Transportation Development Division, Planning Section. Contacts for staff in both work groups are provided below.

ODOT Rail and Public Transit Division Contacts:
Stacy Snider, Rail Operations and Planning Section Manager
(503) 986-5190
Stacy.E.Snider@odot.state.or.us

Bob Melbo, State Rail Planner
(503) 986-4137
Robert.I.Melbo@odot.state.or.us
Project Management:
Michael Rock, Principal Planner
Planning Section, Transportation Development Division
(503) 986-3179
Michael.D.Rock@odot.state.or.us
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Subscribe to Email Updates

/ODOT/TD/TP/PublishingImages/Email.jpg If you are interested in receiving notification when new State Rail Plan information is available on this website, sign up with GovDelivery where you will be asked to provide your email address.

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