Press Release

October 2, 2023
Cardin, Van Hollen, Mfume, Moore Announce More Than $20 Million to Advance Critical Maryland Rail Projects

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, Congressman Kweisi Mfume and Governor Wes Moore (all D-Md.), today announced $20,384,317 in U.S. Department of Transportation funding for rail infrastructure projects in Maryland to strengthen the Maryland Area Rail Commuter (MARC) network with a Penn-Camden lines connection and to replace diesel-electric locomotives with clean, battery-electric locomotives at the Port of Baltimore.

“Baltimore history is rooted in rail — it’s who we are and who we always want to be. With the help of these awards, we are ushering in a new era of rail service by investing in the latest green technology, while strengthening the rail network that is a critical asset for our state,” said Senator Cardin. “Expanded capacity, greater efficiency, less carbon pollution and a bright future for Penn and Union Station are what these federal dollars will deliver, transforming the way we move people and goods in Maryland.”

“Our commuter rail system is essential to getting Marylanders from place to place, and to keeping our economy moving. These federal funds will upgrade rail service and increase efficiency in transit from Baltimore to Washington, D.C., opening more doors of opportunity across the region. It’s a win-win-win: for strengthening our economy; for improving mobility in our area; and for reducing pollution. Projects like these are exactly why we fought to pass the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act,” said Senator Van Hollen.

“The Port and MARC train network are invaluable global and regional transportation assets. I am proud of the work we are doing in Congress to ensure these assets are properly sustained for years to come,” said Congressman Mfume.

“This critical funding will help us improve MARC reliability and deliver cleaner air for communities near the Port of Baltimore,” said Governor Moore. “We are grateful for the unwavering support and partnership from the Biden Administration, the U.S. Department of Transportation and our Congressional delegation in helping us deliver a transportation system that serves all Marylanders and will help expand our economy in a cleaner, more equitable way.”

The federal dollars were awarded through the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program, which supports both freight and passenger rail projects. The lawmakers fought to increase funding for this program within the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, making available more than $1.4 billion in CRISI funds nationwide this year. The program’s latest round of grant awards include the following two projects in Maryland:

  1. Port of Baltimore, $11,584,317: To replace three older, non-regulated emission diesel-electric switching locomotives with three new battery electric locomotives and install one battery charger, establishing the first ever zero-exhaust emissions locomotives at an east coast port. CSX, one of the Class I railroads serving the Port is contributing a 50 percent project match.
  1. Penn-Camden Connector, $8,800,000: To advance planning for a new rail connection between the MARC Penn Line, on Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor, and the MARC Camden Line, on CSX Transportation’s (CSX) Capital Subdivision, providing more efficient maintenance and the potential for additional trains to service Camden Yards and M&T Bank Stadium during events. The project would also provide added storage capacity to support the expansion of capacity with the redeveloped Penn Station in Baltimore and Union Station in Washington, D.C.  The Maryland Transit Administration is providing a 20 percent match.