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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

NS landed 67 new plants, 28 facility expansion projects in 2010


Last year, Norfolk Southern Corp. played a role in locating 67 new industries along its lines, as well as 28 plant expansions.

The industrial projects, which cost a total of about $2.5 billion, are expected to create 2,000 jobs in the railroad’s territory and generate more than 132,000 carloads of new rail traffic annually, according to NS.

The Class I helped state and local governments and economic development authorities in 16 states work with shippers to identify plant locations and facility expansion opportunities. The railroad offers advice on site location and expertise on the development of rail infrastructure to connect plants to its system, as well as industrial park planning, site layout, track design and logistics assistance services.

The energy sector again anchored NS’ industrial development efforts in 2010, said Newell Baker, the Class I’s assistant vice president of industrial development, in a prepared statement. The railroad helped locate or expand 32 energy-related facilities in 12 states, he said.

“Biofuels production and distribution accounted for the lion’s share of energy projects, with nine new and expanded facilities that began to receive NS rail service in 2010,” said Baker. “In addition, we are seeing the first fruits of traffic from Marcellus Shale gas exploration projects, and we expect this to be a strong subsector for us in the coming years.”

Meanwhile, NS also announced that its Norfolk Southern Foundation awarded nearly $5.6 million in grants during 2010 to nonprofit, charitable organizations. The grants included $1.4 million in employee matching gifts to support 510 organizations.

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More News from 2/3/2011