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Marshfield committee does not want railroad crossing closed

MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WSAU) -- A Marshfield committee decision could lead to a battle with the Office of the Commissioner of Railroads. At their meeting Monday night, Marshfield’s Board of Public Works voted against a motion to temporarily close Maple Avenue between Depot Street and Veterans Parkway, the site of several recent car-train collisions.

Alderman Tom Buttke voted against the trial street closing for an assortment of reasons, including a fear that “temporary” really means “permanent.” Butkke said, “We have to be looking at the future. When you close a crossing, it’s gone folks! You’re not getting it back. That we’ve gotta keep in mind.” Ed Wagner thinks the closure’s inevitable, so the city may as well close it voluntarily and save money. According to Wagner, “Basically, I think we should come to grips with the fact that the crossing is going to be closed, and the matter is whether we pay for it out of our pocket, or if we get the Canadian National to share the expenses with us.”

The issue now goes to the Marshfield Common Council on April 22nd when a representative from the Office of the Commissioner of Railroads is scheduled to address questions about the possible closure.

(Listen to the meeting audio on our website, here.)