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12/18/2007



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

KCS notes numerous achievements in '07



This year, Kansas City Southern marked the 120th anniversary of The Kansas City Southern Railway Co.'s (KCSR) founding and 10th year since Kansas City Southern de México S.A. de C.V.'s (KCSM) privatization in Mexico. The subsidiaries’ also drew marks for their numerous achievements, said KCS Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mike Haverty in his year-end letter to employees.

"If KCS were to select a theme for 2007, it would be 'progress as promised,'" he wrote. "As with any path to success, there have been challenges along the way, but ... the employees of KCS' subsidiaries are addressing those challenges head on."

Among this year's accomplishments:
• KCSM entered into a 20-year lease for 30 GE - Transportation ES44AC locomotives, and KCSR executed a 20-year lease for 40 Electro-Motive Diesel Inc. SD70ACe and 20 GE ES44AC locomotives. In 2008, KCSR will receive 30 new SD70ACe units and two Railpower Technologies Corp. Genset switchers, and KCSM will receive 30 new ES44AC locomotives. In addition, both railroads will obtain 1,100 new covered hopper cars, and KCSM will acquire several autoracks.
• KCSM achieved ISO certification, meaning the railroad's purchasing processes meet rigorous international standards.
• KCSR established a rail welding facility at its Shreveport, La., yard.
• KCS finalized the purchase of property at the former Richards-Gebaur Air Base in Kansas City, Mo., for the CenterPoint-KCS Intermodal Center. An intermodal ramp will open by the end of January and additional work will be completed by 2008's end.
• KCS applied for a $100 million Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing loan from the Federal Railroad Administration to help fund the rehabilitation of a line between Victoria and Rosenberg, Texas. Construction is expected to wrap up in late 2008 or early 2009. In addition, KCSR next year will line up a development partner for a proposed intermodal distribution park in Fort Bend County, Texas.
• KCSR is on track to complete capacity improvements on the Meridian Speedway — a KCS/Norfolk Southern Corp. joint venture line — one year ahead of schedule. When completed next year, the improvements will boost the line's capacity to 45 trains per day.
• KCS' agriculture and minerals business unit expanded a shuttle train network across KCSR and KCSM. In addition, the carload business unit attracted a SeverCorr steel mill on KCSR's line in Mississippi and the automotive business unit attracted three auto plants that are slated to open on KCSM's and KCSR's lines during the next two years.
• KCSM improved infrastructure on a corridor between Celaya and Lazaro Cardenas, helping to boost train speed to 59 mph on a Nuevo Laredo-to-Monterrey segment.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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