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The Howard Street Tunnel (HST) Project consists of vertical clearance improvements along CSX’s I-95 Rail Corridor to allow double-stack trains (trains transporting shipping containers stacked on top of each other) to travel between Baltimore, Maryland and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The primary obstacle to double-stack service along this corridor has been the Howard Street Tunnel, a 1.7-mile-long railroad passage under the heart of Baltimore that was originally constructed in 1895. With current vertical clearances up to 18 inches less than the 21 feet necessary for double-stack, the HST and 22 other clearance obstructions currently restrict the ability to move double-stack trains along this section of CSX’s network, including to and from the Port of Baltimore.
Utilizing funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation, CSX, the State of Maryland and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the HST Project will eliminate all remaining double-stack obstructions between Baltimore and Philadelphia. The HST Project consists of the following work, at the following locations.
State of Maryland
Howard Street Tunnel
Mount Royal Avenue
St. Paul/Calvert Street
State of Delaware
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Crum Lynne Road
The HST Project is being evaluated in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The NEPA process requires federal agencies to assess the potential environmental effects of their proposed actions prior to making decisions regarding the proposed action. The US Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is the federal agency leading the NEPA process for this project. An Environmental Assessment (EA) document was prepared in accordance with NEPA and FRA’s NEPA implementing regulations to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of the HST Project. The EA and associated appendices are available for review by clicking on the below links.
The formal EA comment period is open through Tuesday, April 13, 2021. Comments may be emailed to the project team at email@example.com. In addition, comments can also be directly mailed to:
Maryland Port Administration401 E. Pratt Street, 19th FloorBaltimore, Maryland 21201
Due to COVID-19 protocols, traditional public open houses cannot be offered as part of the comment period. Instead, the following video was produced that summarizes the HST Project’s purpose and need, scope of work and potential environmental impacts.
Prior to finalizing the EA, the project team participated in numerous public and stakeholder engagement meetings and is committed to continuing that engagement beyond the EA comment period. Community groups that would like more information or request a virtual briefing after the initial comment period may contact the project team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The project team will consider comments received during the EA comment period when drafting the final NEPA document, which FRA expects to approve in the spring of 2021. Following final NEPA approval, CSX will be able to finalize engineering, obtain permits and advance the project to construction. CSX expects to begin construction, in phases, later in 2021.
401 East Pratt Street Baltimore, MD 21202