Rail improvements at Olympic Gateway Mall

A construction project to improve six railroad crossings at the entrances to the Olympic Gateway Mall in Aberdeen is expected to start Monday and go through Wednesday, from 7 a.m. until about 5 p.m. each day.

Puget Sound &Pacific Railroad plans to close and completely rebuild each crossing, raising it back to the level of the streets. Two crossings per day are scheduled to be completed. To minimize inconvenience to shoppers and businesses at the plaza, no more than two crossings will be closed at any time during the project.

Each rebuilt crossing will be reopened prior to the closure of any additional crossings.

“We understand that this creates some inconvenience for local business owners and shoppers, but when the last crossing is reopened on Thursday morning, people will have a significantly improved experience entering and exiting the plaza via the new crossings,” said Joel Haka, Puget Sound &Pacific president.

“The project doesn’t add any capacity to the railroad but is being done to enhance safety at the crossings and improve quality of life for people utilizing them.”

The rebuild process consists of crews closing and removing the railroad track, tamping the railroad bed, replacing the wooden ties as needed, resurfacing and paving and reinstalling the rail.

Puget Sound &Pacific has invested more than $4.3 million in track upgrades since being acquired 18 months ago by Genesee &Wyoming, which owns 112 short line and regional freight railroads. After a highly unusual series of low-speed derailments two months ago, Puget Sound &Pacific plans to spend another $4.6 million on its track in the next 18 months.


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