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6/11/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

South Dakota acquires North Dakota line to accentuate agricultural markets


The state of South Dakota recently purchased for $400,000 a 23-mile state border-to-Geneseo, N.D., line from Rutland Line Inc., which was owned by Red River Valley & Western Railroad Co. (RRVW).
South Dakota Railroad Authority plans to link the track with a 50-mile Aberdeen, S.D.-to-North Dakota border line the state acquired last year from Burlington Northern Santa Fe. The continuous Aberdeen-to-Geneseo line would open additional agricultural markets to farmers and communities along the route.
Both lines, which were damaged by floods during the 1990s, have been out of operation the past two years.
South Dakota recently awarded a $320,000 contract to 364-mile Dakota, Missouri Valley & Western Railroad Inc. (DMVW) to repair the 50-mile line, which is expected to be completed this summer. The state estimates repairs to the 23-mile line to cost $250,000.
Once repairs are complete on both lines, the state plans to choose between BNSF, DMVW and RRVW to operate the 73-mile stretch.


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