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Unformatted text preview: meltdown, the railroad couldn’t generate enough interest from Wall Street investors to improve the line. The
railroad has long been reluctant to accept government investment in its infrastructure out of fear of public meddling ,
such as being compelled to run money-losing passenger trains. But now, like most of the industry, it has changed its mind, and it
happily accepted Virginia’s offer last year to fund a small portion—$40 million—of the investment needed to get more
freight traffic off I-81 and onto the Crescent Corridor. The railroad estimates that with an additional $2 billion in infrastructure
investment, it could divert a million trucks off the road, which is currently carrying just under five million. State
officials are thinking even bigger: a study sponsored by the Virginia DOT finds that a cumulative investment over ten to
twelve years of less than $8 billion would divert 30 percent of the growing truck traffic on I-81 to rail. That would be far more bang for the state’s buck than the $11 billion it would take to add more lanes to the highway, espec...
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