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Grant Will Repair, Re-open Railroad
$7-million dollars in federal grants money is headed to southern Oregon to help repair the Siskiyou rail line that runs between Medford and Weed. The announcement came from Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Oregon District 4 Representative Peter DeFazio.
The railroad has been out of service since 2008. It's estimated that the total cost of the project will be $9.49 million. The remaining money will come from the rail line's owner, Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad.
Senator Wyden says the line's re-opening will have an "immediate and important economic impact for Southern Oregon. It will save shippers hundreds of thousands of dollars in transportation costs, get goods to market more efficiently, take heavy trucks off the interstate highway and reduce road damage."
Senator Merkley adds the funding will create jobs in Southern Oregon and strengthen the timber industry. The 296-mile line actually runs from Eugene to Weed. The portion of the line north of Jackson County is in line for state funding.