North Carolina’s Piedmont Improvement Program recently concluded after seven years improving the state’s rail infrastructure.
The program encompassed more than 40 projects that included closing nearly 40 street-level roadway crossings to improve safety, updating four train stations between Cary and Kannapolis, constructing 13 new bridges over or under highways, laying 27 miles of double track between Greensboro and Charlotte, and adding locomotives and railcars to the Piedmont train service.
The Piedmont train service will now have five trains each way between Raleigh and Charlotte and will run two new daily round trips. The new trips are scheduled to begin in the spring.
“The Piedmont Improvement Program has put our state on the right path for the future by not only improving connectivity for passenger customers, but also serving as a catalyst for economic improvement through freight rail service, locally and nationally,” NCDOT Chief Deputy Secretary David Howard said. “Additionally, modernization of the corridor allows for increased freight service along the line to better accommodate growing freight traffic while lightening the load on our state’s highways.”
In 2010, the North Carolina Department of Transportation began a series of railroad and highway construction projects.
The Piedmont Improvement Program received a $520 million grant through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.