FRA issues NOFO for $1.1 million in Railroad Crossing Elimination Grant Program funding

July 10, 2024
The RCE Grant Program aims to fund projects that work to construct grade separations and upgrade safety devices at crossings.

The Federal RailRoad Administration (FRA) has issued a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for more than $1.1 billion in Railroad Crossing Elimination (RCE) Grant Program funding.

The RCE Program invests in projects that construct grade separations, upgrade safety devices at crossings, or close at-grade crossings where roads and train tracks intersect. The FRA has focused its efforts on addressing collisions and blockages at grade crossings by improving safety and access to communities separated by rail crossings. 

“This program demonstrates how President Biden’s infrastructure package is directly benefiting communities across America, serving to keep citizens safe and improve their quality of life,” said U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “By making grade crossings safer or eliminating them altogether, we are acting to ensure Americans spend less time stuck in lengthy delays, can get around their neighborhoods more easily and safely and can avoid the needless tragedies that result from collisions with trains.” 

Project applications will be evaluated based on factors such as whether they improve safety, increase community connectivity, enhance access to emergency services, improve the mobility of goods, strengthen supply chains and reduce noise. At least 20 percent of RCE Program funding (around $230 million this round) will also be set aside for projects located in rural communities or on Tribal lands and around $38 million will be available to fund planning projects. 

“Railroads play a vital role in our nation’s transportation network by moving people and goods in a sustainable and efficient way and the funding announced today will help ensure that railroad operations are compatible with safety and mobility in the communities through which trains move,” said FRA Administrator Amit Bose.

In 2023, FRA awarded more than 63 RCE Program grants for major projects, such as the construction of a sealed rail corridor in Houston, Texas, as well as overpasses, underpasses and rail bridges in Pelham, Ala., Hammond, Ind., and Washougal, Wash. FRA has also already made available billions more in grant funding this year through the Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Program and the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Program, both of which will improve safety and efficiency on the nation’s rail network. 

Applications for funding are due Sept. 22.