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Novato Advance: Freight train bridge, track repairs to start by mid February
Friday 30 Jan 2009, 11:28
Filed under: Marin, NCRA, Northwestern Pacific Railroad, Railroad, Sonoma

Novato Advance: Freight train bridge, track repairs to start by.

Roughly $14 million worth of improvements should get underway soon to a 26-mile stretch of railroad track that runs through Novato.

The North Coast Railroad Authority awarded a $4 million contract to Cooper Crane & Rigging, Inc. of Novato to repair 40 timber bridges on its railroad track between Lombard, north of Vallejo, and the city of Windsor.

The work will include elevating a bridge near the Vintage Oaks shopping mall at which floodwater backs up in Novato Creek.

“It will be raised slightly to address the flooding issue there,” said Mitch Stogner, the railroad authority’s executive director.

The railroad authority also awarded a roughly $10 million contract to Balfour Beatty to repair the track itself; the work will include replacing 59,000 railroad ties, Stogner said. The first phase of work will start in mid-February between Lombard and Ignacio, he said.

The railroad authority awarded the contracts in the fall, but had a kick-off meeting Tuesday at Embassy Suites in San Rafael with the contractors.

“People will see evidence of work very soon,” Stogner said.

The city of Novato had sued to stop work on the tracks, but city council agreed to a settlement in October that limits train trips to an initial three round-trip freight trains per week during daylight hours.

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