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Public hearing set in Indiana on proposed $8B rail line

VALPARAISO, Ind. — A federal agency is planning a public hearing next week on a proposed $8 billion, 278-mile rail line from Indiana to Wisconsin aimed at relieving Chicago-area freight congestion.

Porter County Commissioner Laura Blaney tells The (Munster) Times the U.S. Surface Transportation Board has agreed to host an additional public meeting on the project Tuesday in Valparaiso. Blaney said area lawmakers sought the meeting after learning one wasn’t originally scheduled for Porter County.

The announcement Wednesday comes a day after the Porter County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution 3-0 opposing the project out of concern for drainage, decreased property values, safety issues and potential road closures. Blaney’s Boone Grove area farm and house are in the railroad’s path.

The line could handle up to 110 trains a day.

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