Rezin rips railroad project as damaging, disorganized
Sen. Sue Rezin (R-Morris) wants to derail a troublesome transportation project in her district, she said on her website recently.
“This Great Lakes Basin Railroad project, which cuts through most of my Senate District in Illinois, has far too many more questions than answers, and more problems than solutions,” Rezin wrote. “The biggest reason this project should not move forward is pretty simple: landowners I represent don’t want the project, don’t want to give up their land, and don’t want the trains.
Rezin pointed to a recent report from the LaSalle News Tribune that presented opinions from landowners opposed to the project and from the project’s main developer. The project is an initiative of Great Lakes Basin Transportation LLC, led by CEO Frank Patton.
Despite heavy opposition from Illinois communities, leading to House a resolution against the project this June, Patton argued that it is an important development for nationwide transit. The railroad would allow trains to avoid passing through Chicago, where they can be stalled for up to 36 hours, he said, adding that the problem will only get worse in the future.
Area landowners, on the other hand, argued that the railroad will cut through farms and over drainage lines and oppose its 200-foot right-of-way. Opposition to the project, which now spans 11 counties, also argues that the developers do not want to pay fair prices for the land they would be taking over.
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