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Rail - Mt. Vernon Siding Extension

project is complete
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Mt. Vernon turnout 
Once installed, this new turnout will allow slower freight trains to move off the main line to allow faster passenger trains to pass.

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February 2017

  • This project was operationally complete in September 2015.
  • WSDOT completed phase one, creating 4,600 feet of siding and secured state funds and federal high speed rail funding to extend the siding another 4,700 feet.
  • Extending the siding creates a longer pull out track for freight and passenger trains to pass each other.

Why is WSDOT upgrading siding at Mt. Vernon?
This project will extend the Mount Vernon Siding track to improve capacity of the railroad for intercity passenger rail operations.

The siding extension will provided sufficient capacity for 8,000-foot freight trains that are now commonly operated on the main line.

The End Result
The project will improve Amtrak Cascades reliability by reducing conflicts with freight operations.

Phase one included 4,600 feet of siding, with phase two adding close to 4,100 foot siding extension southward (4,700 feet with turnout included).

The project includes closing the at-grade Hickox Road crossing with gates and constructing cul-de-sacs to allow for a safe turn-around area.

Project Benefits

  • More reliable Amtrak Cascades service.
  • Increased passenger and freight rail safety.

What is the project timeline?
The first phase of construction began in March 2005 to upgrade the siding and is complete.

Engineering and design work for phase two is complete and construction started in September 2014. Construction is expected to be completed in fall 2015.

Financial Information

This project is funded through the following sources:

Phase one:
2003 Legislative Transportation Package (New & Used Vehicle Sales Tax) - $2.12 million

Phase two:
August 2010 HSIPR grant - $3.3 million
Additional state funds - $5.2 million

Total Funding From All Sources - $8.5 million

How can I get more information?
WSDOT Rail Division
PO Box 47407
Olympia, WA 98504-7407

Rail construction on this project will be managed by BNSF Railway. To become a supplier of construction services such as grading and construction management, or construction materials for this project, please go to BNSF's supplier site and submit a supplier registration form.

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