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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Updates from Hatch Mott MacDonald, Hanson Pipe & Precast, Dynamic Composites, Dow and Cornerstone Systems


• Hatch Mott MacDonald (HMM) obtained a contract from the Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (TriMet) to provide preliminary engineering services for the Portland-to-Milwaukie light-rail extension’s east segment. The engineering firm will lead a project team of 16 sub-consultants, which will complete preliminary and civil engineering, light-rail trackway design, environmental and other services for the 7.3-mile segment. Construction on the MAX line is scheduled to begin in 2011 and conclude in 2015. HMM previously provided tunnel engineering support services for TriMet’s Westside MAX Line, and currently is providing on-call scheduling, estimating and systems engineering services for the agency.

• Hanson Pipe & Precast is providing more than 2,025 track feet of its Premier® modular railroad crossings for National Alabama Corp.’s $500 million rail-car manufacturing facility in Alabama’s Muscle Shoals region. RailWorks Corp., a subcontractor under Yates/Walbridge, selected Hanson Pipe to provide the grade crossings for the project, which covers more than 640 acres and features seven miles of track. Hanson Pipe is producing the crossings at plants in Pelham, Ala.; Dunn, N.C.; Pottstown, Pa.; and Chesapeake, Va., to meet stringent schedule requirements, the company said.

 • Dynamic Composites L.L.C. has delivered its first production order of environmentally friendly composite ties to BNSF Railway Co., which has ordered 4,000 units. A Steel Dynamics Inc. subsidiary, Dynamic Composites shipped the ties — which are produced from recycled materials, including steel, rubber and plastics — to Texas locations in March and April. The ties feature a core produced from flat-rolled steel filled with concrete and a skin comprising a blend of shredded tires and recycled plastics.

• Dow AgroSciences has developed VISTA® XRT, a herbicide designed for railroad rights of way, as well as industrial sites and other areas. The herbicide is designed to control dogfennel, lespedeza and kochia at lower application rates. VISTA XRT can treat more acres per gallon along rail rights of way, Dow AgroSciences said. The herbicide is formulated with a solvent derived from naturally occurring seed oil, reducing the amount of organic compounds and eliminating petroleum distillates compared with other herbicides.

• Cornerstone Systems has been named one of the top 500 mid-size U.S. businesses by, a business-to-business Web site. The list recognizes mid-size companies in such sectors as transportation, technology, manufacturing and food service that are “top multicultural earners.” Cornerstone Systems provides various logistics services, including intermodal, rail-car consolidation, truck brokerage, warehousing and transloading.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/15/2009