Capstone $6 million project will make the community safer and rail line more efficient;
Grant is second largest ever for OmniTRAX after recent project in Georgia and Florida
Peru, IL – The City of Peru, Illinois and OmniTRAX, Inc., one of the largest privately held transportation service companies in North America and an affiliate of The Broe Group, will receive a grant for extensive trackwork on the OmniTRAX-managed Illinois Railway (IR). The Peru Intermodal, Safety, Congestion, and Energy Security Project, Phase II (PISCES II) is being awarded a $6,081,036.00 grant as part of the federal government’s FY 18 Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Grant Program.
The grant is for the capstone project of a long-term public-private partnership between the City of Peru and OmniTRAX, resulting in a dramatically safer community and a more efficient transport network. It will improve crossing surfaces and install 25 miles of 115-pound rail, 20,000 ties and seven switch sets, and 7,600 tons of ballast along the 17-mile corridor on the IR’s La Salle sub from Peru to Zearing, Illinois, enabling economic growth and new jobs for the central Illinois region.
“We are very excited to be involved with this generational investment in the central Illinois rail network and appreciate the efforts of both the local and federal governments, particularly the state’s two US senators and Rep. Adam Kinzinger who have supported the grant from its initiation. It’s projects like this, based on mutual benefit for all stakeholders, that are a shining example of how government and business can work together effectively,” said Kevin Shuba, CEO of OmniTRAX.
The first two elements of the project, which were funded by the Illinois Department of Transportation and local sources, provided easier access to the truck-to-rail transload facility, pulled traffic away from downtown Peru and built a new access road and rail siding. Construction for the latest component will be administered by the Federal Railroad Administration, will likely start in 2020 and will take several months to complete.
“This project is benefiting our community by making the railroad safer while enhancing the performance of the Peru Industrial Railroad. This is the definition of public-private partnerships and we’re fortunate to have OmniTRAX as our partner in this one,” said Peru Mayor Scott Harl.
“This project will support continued economic growth and the creation of new opportunities in and around Peru while also improving transportation safety. I am proud of my friends in the City of Peru who have done a wonderful job of designing and championing infrastructure projects that can benefit Illinois for many years to come,” said US Senator Dick Durbin (IL-D).
Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) said: “This grant award for the City of Peru is great news for the 16th Congressional District and our entire region. With this investment, city officials can move forward on plans to improve railway routes and the capacity to access new economic opportunities. I’m grateful to the Department of Transportation for recognizing the needs in our community and the value that the City of Peru’s Pisces II Project will bring to the area.”