University receives federal transit grant

By Daily Illini Staff Report

Sen. Dick Durbin announced Tuesday that the Federal Transit Administration has awarded the University $2,396,981 in funding. The grant will support the University’s Rail Transportation and Engineering Center (RailTEC) research on the improvement of rail safety and infrastructure in Champaign.

RailTEC, part of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE), will be able to increase its research on issues related to rail transit infrastructure, as well as rail transit safety.

According to the press release, RailTEC plans to work with rail industry partners across the country to create new designs for concrete crossties and fastening systems which are used in all types of rail transit- from light rail to commuter rail infrastructure. The new designs will factor in the various infrastructures unique loading conditions.

Durbin praised the University’s transportation research programs and the role they played in the growth of the state’s railroads.