NORFOLK - Legislator Jason A. Clark hosted a Town Hall Meeting on Thursday to discuss issues related to railroad crossings in Norwood and Norfolk at the Norfolk fire station located at State Route 420.
At the meeting, Legislator Clark announced the following:
• St. Lawrence County government officials have been in detailed conversation with CSX Transportation about the quality of the grade crossings on County Routes 38, 47 and 49. Specifically, they have indicated that there are serious defects with respect to at least two of those crossings.
• As a result, County Route 38 will close in the vicinity of the railroad tracks on Monday and will likely reopen on Wednesdau due to planned repairs of the tracks and the installation of decking.
• CSX Transportation has indicated that the recent problems were related to a temporary repair to the crossing while materials for the permanent repair were being delivered to the site.
• He has engaged the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority regarding the ill repair of their crossings, particularly those located on state Route 56 in Norwood.
• Unrelated to track crossings, he also indicated that he is working with the St. Lawrence County IDA on issues related to the dispute between Tri-Town Packing and the USDA.
Local residents shared concerns about the following:
• Posted road speeds leading into the approach of several crossings
• Visibility issues created by overgrowth especially on CR 38.
• Visibility issues created by the abandoned building on CR 38.
Late last year ,Mr. Clark, Norfolk Town Supervisor Charlie Pernice and Norfolk Highway Superintendent Larry Villnave met with representatives from CSX Transportation. The officials agreed that all of the deficient grade crossings located along the CSX main line in Norwood and Norfolk would be replaced or repaired by the end of the summer of 2014 to a standard that was safe and easily passable.
In response to the recent actions by CSX, Mr. Clark said, “My colleagues at CSX are keeping true to their word. With respect to the recent speed ramp on CR 38, I think there was a temporary lapse in communication on the matter, and they have confirmed that this was a temporary issue. This lapse has been rectified, and I do not expect an issue in the future.
“CSX has been a good partner so far, and they fully understand the issues that exist on the Mill Road, the Murphy Road, Bicknell Street and every other issue that I addressed in my original letter that was sent last year. We continue to work together. As this is a dynamic process, there will be a lot of changes throughout the summer and a number of temporary road closures. I hope that people are patient with the process and accept the temporary inconveniences as justification for the long-term benefits of these upgrades. In the meantime, if people have concerns or questions, they should contact me at 617-312-8594,” he said.