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Rail crossing will be closed

September 27, 1997

CSX will close its rickety railroad crossing on Park Lane at St. Clair Street Monday for an upgrade that will take about two weeks, city officials said Friday.

Workers will remove two of the three sets of tracks at the crossing and replace them with asphalt, City Engineer Bruce Johnston said. Workers also will repair the wooden supports around the remaining middle track.

The project is a prelude to upgrading the CSX crossing at Northern Avenue, which could be done in October. That crossing has about 14,000 cars a day, compared to 3,000 at the Park Lane crossing.

CSX had planned to replace the Northern Avenue crossing with new wooden supports but city officials want a more permanent solution and are negotiating with CSX.

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City officials also want CSX to complete that crossing in a few days, rather than a few weeks, because of the importance of Northern Avenue.

Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II said he was pleased CSX was finally hearing the cries of Hagerstown residents who have been complaining about the crossings.

A suit brought by the city against CSX because of a failure to keep up the crossings is on hold pending completion of the construction.

Both rail projects will be paid for by CSX.

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