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Projects to provide needed rail and road improvements to serve the new Milwaukee manufacturing facility and headquarters of Komatsu Mining Corp. will be supported by two Transportation Economic Assistance (TEA) grants announced today by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.
One grant supports the construction of a railroad spur to provide rail access to Komatsu’s new, $300 million manufacturing and headquarters facility currently under construction in Milwaukee’s Harbor District. The second grant supports the reconstruction of a section of Kinnickinnic Avenue to allow large trucks to safely access the Komatsu site. This type of rail and road access is consistent with the transportation infrastructure requirements of a heavy manufacturing operation of this scale.
“Transportation is vital to manufacturers like Komatsu, and to Wisconsin’s other important industry sectors,” Governor Tony Evers said. “When we improve Wisconsin’s transportation infrastructure, we help our state’s businesses be more competitive. That improves the economy and makes life better for all of us.”
“We applaud the company’s significant capital investment in their new Milwaukee facility and the new jobs it will create,” Secretary-designee Craig Thompson said. “These grants will help Milwaukee support the growth of a world-class company, reaping the many community benefits that will follow.”
“We appreciate the partnerships that are moving these projects forward. They are examples of how strategic transportation investments can support job growth and strengthen our economy,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said. “It is great to see the progress at the Komatsu development, and the rail and roadway projects are a significant part of that.”
The $2.4 million dollar spur project, which will connect the Komatsu site to the Union Pacific and Canadian Pacific railroads, will be funded in part by a $1,000,000 TEA grant. Work on the rail spur is expected to be completed by this fall.
The $1.46 million road project will be supported by a separate $731,000 TEA grant. Road work is expected to be take place in 2022.
In addition to the TEA grant, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) has authorized the company to receive up to $59.5 million in state tax credits. The actual amount of tax credits received, however, will be contingent upon the number of jobs created and the amount of capital investment the company makes during that time.
In calendar year 2020, Wisconsin’s TEA program awarded 11 grants totaling $5.2 million to support transportation improvements linked to business development projects that will create 1,005 new jobs and retain an additional 686 jobs in Wisconsin.
The TEA program provides financial assistance to communities to support transportation infrastructure improvements that will help attract new employers or encourage existing employers to expand. A municipal or county unit of government must sponsor a TEA application. The project must have the local government’s endorsement, and it must benefit the community.