Railroad improvement project comes with proposed changes to local bridges

By KBJR News 1

June 29, 2014 Updated Jun 29, 2014 at 10:48 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- A $30 million railroad improvement project is underway in the Northland to help the upper Midwest railway system move more efficiently... and with the project comes many changes.

Proposals for change include alterations to a number of bridges including the Munger Trail Bridge, the bridge at 108th Avenue, and the Mission Creek Trail Bridge.

CN managers say the 'Steelton Hill Double Track Project' will increase network efficiency and fluidity.

The Duluth Economic Development Authority has sold small portions of land, near the old Atlas Cement Plant site in Duluth to CN Railway in order to install a second track.

Managers say it's a bottleneck area for the rail system, making the 20 to 25 trains that come through each day suffer from repeated delays.

"CN is looking to spend an excess of $30,000,000 installing a second track on a stretch of railroad basically between Commonwealth Avenue and then up the hill toward I-35," said Patrick Waldron of CN.

The project will add approximately four and a half miles of new track to the existing railroad corridor in CN's Steelton yard in Gary-New Duluth.

The project is expected to take two years.

CN managers hope to begin construction this summer.

Elsa Robins