Pawtucket, RI/Commuter Rail Layover Facility A-25

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Rhode Island Commuter Rail Improvement Program

Pawtucket Layover Facility

Pawtucket, Rhode Island

(August 2001)


The Pawtucket Layover Facility Project is a joint Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT)/Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) venture, consisting of the design and construction of a six-track commuter rail yard for the purpose of overnight layover/storage of commuter rail equipment, to serve both the existing Providence-Boston service and Rhode Islandís future South County commuter rail service. The proposed site is located in the northwest quadrant of the I-95 & Smithfield Avenue Interchange on the Pawtucket/Providence city line. The twelve-acre parcel is situated adjacent to and east of the Amtrak Main Line.

The facility will provide for future commuter rail growth both at Providence and South County, RI. Currently, commuter rail carries approximately 825 riders per day at Providence with eight round trips. Ridership is expected to grow to 1,050 riders per day in 2005 with eleven round trips. Ridership studies conducted to date for the proposed South County Commuter Rail Service show an expected 2,550 riders per day would use the service to Providence.

The total capital cost for this project is $18.5 million, with a proposed Section 5309 New Starts share of $10 million. Since the proposed New Starts share is less that $25 million, the project is exempt from the New Starts criteria, and thus is not subject to FTAís evaluation and rating (49 USC Section 5309 (e)(8)(A)).

Summary Description
Proposed Project: Pawtucket Layover Facility
Total Capital Cost ($YOE): $18.5 million
Section 5309 New Starts Share ($YOE): $10 million
Annual Operating Cost ($2003): $1.0 million


The Pawtucket Layover Facility was authorized in TEA-21 in Section 3030 (c)(1)(A)(xliii). Through FY 2001, RIDOT has received $0.5 million in Section 5309 New Starts appropriations.

The RIDOT, in conjunction with the MBTA, has proposed the development of a commuter rail layover yard in Pawtucket, Rhode Island since the original Pilgrim Partnership Agreement was signed in 1988. The project is included in Rhode Islandís Long Range Ground Transportation Plan, and has been adopted by the State MPO in the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).

Based on the environmental documentation submitted by the RIDOT, the FTA found that the specific conditions or criteria for a Categorical Exclusion under 23 CFR 771.117(d)(11) were satisfied and that significant environmental impacts would not result. FTA issued an environmental determination on December 3, 1999.

Preliminary engineering and final design have been completed. This project was approved for final design in April 2001. Construction is expected to begin in the Fall 2001 and be completed in late 2002. The layover yard would begin operations in late 2002/early 2003.

The MBTA, as the responsible agency for final design and construction, has developed a recent construction cost estimate of $18.5 million (escalated dollars) for this project. RIDOT and MBTA propose completing the project with Section 5309 New Starts funds, Section 5309 Fixed Guideway Modernization funds, and MBTA funds.


Locally Proposed Financing Plan
(Reported in $YOE)
Proposed Source of Funds Total Funding ($million) Appropriations to Date

    Section 5309 New Starts


($0.5 million appropriated through FY 2001)

    Section 5309 Fixed Guideway

$4.7 $1.45 million FY 2000


  $2.36 million FY 2001
    $0.96 million FY 2002




TOTAL $18.5  
NOTE: Funding proposal reflects assumptions made by project sponsors, and are not DOT or FTA assumptions. Totals may not add due to rounding.