Title

RAIL-HIGHWAY GRADE CROSSING CONSOLIDATION IN KANSAS

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1998

Subject Area

infrastructure - bus/tram lane, economics - appraisal/evaluation, mode - rail

Keywords

Selecting, Railroad grade crossings, Public support, Public relations, Mathematical models, Local government, Level crossings, Lane closure, Kansas, Highway railroad grade crossings, Highway rail intersections, Hazard evaluation, Grade crossings, Grade crossing elimination, Corridors, Closures

Abstract

Consolidation or closure of unnecessary grade crossings is a cost-effective but difficult-to-achieve option for increasing the safety of highway-rail grade crossings. Consolidation not only needs traffic engineering expertise, it also needs the support of local government officials and citizens. It is as much a public relations effort as an engineering exercise. To win local support, proposals for closing selected crossings should appear reasonable to the public, that is, the public should be able to see a need or net benefit. A corridor study is more effective than targeting single crossings for closure. Selecting a corridor with high-potential closure candidates can be the key to the success of winning local approval. Finding the most "hazardous" crossings can help select high-potential corridors. The development of a model to pinpoint Kansas' best candidates for closure as a key step in selecting corridors where consolidation efforts should be concentrated is described.