Railroad funding snubs Chicago link to Eastern Iowa - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Railroad funding snubs Chicago link to Eastern Iowa


WASHINGTON, D.C. (KWWL) -- President Obama announced $8 billion in funding for high-speed rail projects during a town hall meeting in Florida on Thursday. Iowa is on the list, but it's not the major projects that state and local leaders had hoped for.

Legislators, state and local leaders had lobbied heavily for nearly $400 million to create a passenger rail route from Chicago to Dubuque and Iowa City.

Only $17 million of the $8 billion is designated for Iowa to install four remotely controlled powered crossovers on the BNSF Ottumwa subdivision. Gov. Chet Culver says the money will also be used to fund a feasibility study for a passenger rail service from Chicago to Omaha.

Culver said he was disappointed by the Department of Transportation's decision not to fund rail projects involving Dubuque and Iowa City, but says he's optimistic that an expanded rail system is still in Iowa's future.

Later today on KWWL.com and the KWWL evening news, hear from Iowa City leaders who pushed for the funding and what this decision means for the city moving forward.

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