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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Office of Railroad Development

The Office of Railroad Development (RRD) is responsible for working with stakeholders to develop cohesive goals and policies for maintaining and improving the U.S. freight and passenger rail networks, as well as for managing a portfolio of grant investments that contribute to achieving these goals. RRD is primarily focused on the following activities:

  • Evaluating and monitoring federal grants to ensure successful project development and delivery;
  • Establishing parameters and methodologies for conducting national, regional, and state rail planning activities;
  • Overseeing implementation of environmental laws and regulations and advising on environmental policy; and
  • Providing technical assistance and guidance materials to current and future grantees or RRIF loan recipients.

The Associate Administrator for RRD provides executive direction for the following offices:

  • Office of Rail Program Development: Develops and manages Federal rail investment programs to advance and sustain high-performance passenger and freight rail services. This includes coordinating program policy; grant and loan program development/oversight; program performance evaluation; guidance and capacity-building support.
  • Office of Rail Planning & Engineering: Provides railroad planning, operations, and engineering technical support for national and regional rail networks, corridors, and projects, to advance plans, programs, and projects through their lifecycle and prepare for potential capital investment.
  • Office of Environmental Program Management: Oversees implementation of environmental laws and regulations, advises on environmental policy, including climate and sustainability initiatives, and ensures integration of project development with environmental work, in support of rail stakeholders preparing for, participating in, and implementing Federal rail investment programs.
  • Office of Amtrak & Northeast Corridor Program Delivery: Coordinates management and oversight of the Northeast Corridor (NEC) mainline (Boston-Washington) including all aspects of planning, project development, and oversight. Coordinates management and oversight of Amtrak’s service lines, asset lines, and capital programs, including financial performance, investments, policy issues, grant agreements, and other activities. Supports Amtrak, States, and other stakeholders in advancing high-performance passenger rail policy objectives and plans. 
  • Office of Regional Outreach & Project Delivery: Evaluates, implements, and oversees, within a regional, multidisciplinary team structure, the planning, design, project development, environmental analysis, construction, and operations of all projects that involve Federal financial assistance or where there is a Federal interest – excluding NEC mainline and Amtrak projects managed in the Office of Amtrak and Northeast Corridor Program Delivery – to ensure effective delivery of projects. Oversees regional customer outreach to foster effective multi-state compacts, and integrated network plans, projects, and programs; and leads development, capacity-building, and relationships with regional stakeholders.