Union Station: Raleigh's Multi-Modal Transit Center
The Raleigh Union Station is a joint initiative of the North Carolina Department of Transportation Rail Division and the City of Raleigh. The project will be constructed in a series of phases. The first phase, which includes the renovation of the Dillon Supply Company Warehouse (Viaduct Building) located at 510 West Martin Street into a passenger rail facility and the associated rail infrastructure to support it, is scheduled to start construction in early 2015 with the station Grand Opening scheduled for 2017.
It is estimated that the project will create 143 short-term jobs, generating $4.08 million in short-term salaries. The project should also create a “multiplier effect” of an additional $5.53 million in indirect impacts resulting from household expenditures within the region. Based on conclusions from other studies regarding the economic impacts due to construction of private transit-oriented development (TOD), the project has the potential to create a total of 44,500 short-term and indirect jobs over a 10-year period.
On March 3, the Raleigh City Council authorized proceeding with a modified scope and funding package for the Union Station Project.
The recommended plan meets the City’s goals and maintains many of the elements included in the “full-build option” presented to the Council on Jan. 20. The plan retains the project’s signature design elements, retail and civic spaces, and higher efficiency equipment, and it also increases the funds available for contingencies. It recommends a series of measures to anticipate and mitigate cost escalation with the schedule and inflation. The plan reduces the scope of some elements, including overhead utility work, revised platform material choice and construction method, and a modified stormwater garden.
The total budget for the Union Station project is $79.8 million, with an additional $1 million held in reserve. The City’s total contribution to the Union Station project will be $18 million to $19 million.
The Phase I project is fully funded through a series of federal grants, and state & local matches. The City of Raleigh approved an allocation of up to $19 million, including $3 million from the 2010 Transportation Bond approved by Raleigh voters and $7.95 million in unallocated project funds from the completed Falls of Neuse Road Widening project. NCDOT has contributed $9 million in matching funds, and facilitated the redirection of $15 million dollars in Federal American Reinvestment and Recovery Act funds. The City of Raleigh is the recipient of two grants from the USDOT TIGER program (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) totaling $38 million.
25 Year Vision
Raleigh Union Station fits within Gov. McCrory’s 25 Year Vision for North Carolina by supporting the expansion of mass transit options in the central region. Understanding that demographic changes are already occurring, the 25 Year Vision outlines solutions which support expansion of mass transit in high growth areas such as Raleigh to address congestion and land development concerns. Ideally, future phases in partnership with Triangle Transit and others will accommodate additional transportation modes.
Raleigh Union Station is a joint initiative of the North Carolina Department of Transportation Rail Division and the City of Raleigh. Phase 1 of the project is among many improvements to the railroad corridor between Raleigh and Charlotte that will increase capacity, efficiency, and safety. The City of Raleigh and NCDOT propose to construct a new passenger train station in downtown Raleigh by renovating the Viaduct Building at 510 West Martin Street and constructing associated rail infrastructure. The station would replace the existing Amtrak Station on Cabarrus Street, which routinely experiences overcrowding and lacks the adequate platform size to serve longer trains. The project has been contemplated in planning documents since the 1990s and is a significant component in the City’s draft downtown master plan. Raleigh Union Station is anticipated to be a catalytic project in the City’s warehouse district.