Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Freight Railroads


Shipping freight on rail lines allows us to move goods through the state and provides access to global markets.

MnDOT coordinates rail crossing safety, trunk highway projects and rail regulatory activities for more than 4,500 public highway-rail grade crossings throughout Minnesota.

News and notices

Minnesota Rail Service Improvement Program grant funding

Railroad companies, rail users, cities and counties can apply for grant funding to improve freight rail service that supports economic development through the Minnesota Rail Service Improvement Program (MRSI).

For questions about the program, contact Meredith Alt.

MnDOT study prioritizes rail safety improvements

Safety improvements at highway/rail grade crossings along crude-by-rail corridors are the focus of a Minnesota Department of Transportation study that identifies locations where improvements will make the transport of oil safer for residents, workers and emergency responders.

Quiet zones: Have you heard?

A quiet zone is a railroad corridor section(s) where train crews do not routinely sound the horn at highway crossings. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) oversees the requirements to establish Quiet Zones; in Minnesota, local governments are responsible for all costs associated with these zones.

A railroad segment may qualify for an FRA Quiet Zone designation if supplemental or alternative crossing improvements are made to mitigate safety by the lost train horn. Improvements may be crossing closures, one-way conversions, quad gates, medians and signs and pavement markings. Learn more about quiet zones

Need to conduct work on MnDOT right-of-way?

If you are a railroad, contractor, or other group needing to work on or over the limits of a trunk highway, it's important to contact MnDOT before starting this work.