HARRISBURG, Pa (WTAJ) – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced on Monday, Aug. 8 that the application period for the grants under the Rail Transportation Assistance Program (RTAP) and the Rail Freight Assistance Program (RFAP) is now open.

The grants provide financial and technical assistance to railroads and businesses while promoting economic development.

For eligible organizations wishing to apply for funding through either program, applications will be available on the application website beginning at 8 a.m. on Monday, August 8, and ending at 4 p.m. on Friday, September 2.

“Pennsylvania’s rail freight network is critical – it keeps goods moving and supports the economy,” PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian said. “We’re proud of our commitment to supporting the business community and keeping rail lines safe.”

Pennsylvania ranks first in the country in the number of operating railroads, with 65, and ranks near the top in total track mileage, with more than 5,600 miles. 

In the 2021 grant period, PennDOT awarded $33 million for 25 rail freight projects. PennDOT manages two grant programs: RTAP, a capital budget grant program funded with bonds; and RFAP, which is underwritten through the Multimodal Fund, created by Act 89. 

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Program information can be found on the PennDOT website and application questions should be directed to Steve Panko at stepanko@pa.gov or 717-787-1202.