Rhode Island State Rail Planning
The Rhode Island Division of Planning worked in partnership with the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) and the State Rail Plan Advisory Committee to develop the Rhode Island State Rail Plan 2014. The State Rail Plan Advisory Committee comprised representatives from state and federal agencies, public and private passenger and freight rail operators, the rail passenger association, the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), Rhode Island and Massachusetts regional planning agencies, and interest groups. Through the Committee’s involvement, the development of the Rhode Island State Rail Plan 2014 provided an opportunity to bring together various agencies and organizations that have a stake in rail transportation in Rhode Island and the region.
The Rhode Island State Rail Plan 2014 was developed to meet and exceed the planning provisions of the federal Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008 (PRIIA), which requires states to have a current and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) approved state rail plan to be eligible for federal rail funding programs under the act. The Rhode Island State Rail Plan 2014 articulates the vision, goals, and objectives for Rhode Island’s passenger and freight rail systems, and it identifies and prioritizes potential passenger and freight rail projects in Rhode Island that best utilizes the State’s scarce transportation funding resources. The Rhode Island State Planning Council adopted this Plan on March 13, 2014, and thereby replaced the 1993 Rhode Island Freight Rail Plan as State Guide Plan Element 661.
Comments on the Rhode Island State Rail Plan 2014 were accepted at two public hearings that occurred before the TAC on January 23, 2014. Comments received during the public hearings, as well as written public comments received within the public comment period, are summarized and addressed in the Public Hearing & Comment Period Report.