10/02/08 — Depot project gets $1M in funds

View Archive

Depot project gets $1M in funds

By Anessa Myers
Published in News on October 2, 2008 2:07 PM

Goldsboro's Union Station is $1 million closer to becoming a renovated, passenger rail service station.

Mayor Al King announced that the city received $900,000 in additional funding for the project at the Downtown Goldsboro Devel-opment Corp.'s Annual Dinner and Award Ceremony.

Craig Newton, senior project engineer for the North Carolina Department of Transportation Rail Division, said that the money came from Federal Highway Administration Enhancement Funds. NCDOT staff from the Rail Division, Highway Division 4 and Public Transportation Division worked together to find the funding.

"We have been looking for money to pay for this project -- and will continue to look for money for this project -- but we had another project that was finishing up," he said. "We were watching it because we weren't sure if we were going to use all of the money or not. It turns out that we came in under budget for the other project."

So, the next project on the money trickle-down list was Union Station.

DGDC Director Julie Thompson said that the money wasn't really a grant.

"It was just money they found from several places," she said. "We are hoping they find some more."

The city will have to contribute 10 percent matching amount to the funds, or in this case, $100,000. That's the agreement that Goldsboro has with NCDOT officials, a 90/10 percent split, throughout the project.

The funding will initially be used for planning and environmental (P&E) work which is the official name for architectural and engineering design of a complete rehabilitation project, Newton said.

"Any funds not used for P&E may be rolled over into construction when additional funds are identified to proceed with construction," he said. "Construction will include all work necessary to put it back as closely as possible to the way it was 100 years ago."

That construction, he added, will include a new clay tile roof and modern amenities such as air conditioning and making the station handicapped accessible.

The station is currently undergoing stabilization efforts that are estimated to be completed by December.

The efforts to stabilize will not only make the structure a more sound one but will also protect it from the weather.

Newton said the process has gone very well so far, "due to exceptional efforts by the city staff and the Simpson Engineers and David Gall & Associates design team."

Although he believes a four-year timetable is "a reasonable estimate" for completion of the overall project, he said it is still too early to estimate what the total cost of the rehabilitation of the station will be.

Demolition and stabilization processes for the station have cost about $1 million.