The state has received a $250,000 grant for another study of a proposed passenger railway linking Wichita to Kansas City and Oklahoma.
The grant is part of the $8 billion high-speed rail stimulus program announced by President Obama on Wednesday evening.
The Kansas Department of Transportation will receive the $250,000 grant. Kansas and Oklahoma have agreed to put another $250,000 toward the study, but it hasn't been decided yet how much of that each state will pay, said Tom Hein, KDOT's public affairs manager.
The latest study is called a Service Development Plan, and described as a detailed comprehensive business and operations plan for passenger rail service.
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Within a month, KDOT hopes to receive the results of a feasibility study being conducted by Amtrak showing just how much it would cost to create the proposed Amtrak Northern Flyer line from Oklahoma City to Kansas City.
Once those numbers are in, it will be up to the Kansas and Oklahoma legislatures to decide whether to proceed, Hein said.
The tracks are already in place, but they serve slower freight trains and would have to be upgraded to accommodate passenger trains, which go 79 miles an hour, Hein said.
The state had also applied for a $10 million grant to upgrade signals and crossings on the BNSF Railway tracks between Newton and the Oklahoma state line to accommodate passenger trains. The state did not receive that grant.
Still, the president of the Northern Flyer Alliance, which is working to bring passenger rail service to the area, said the latest federal grant for the study is good news.
The service development plan is needed in order to apply for future federal funding, said Deborah Fischer Stout, president of the alliance.