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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Rio Bravo/El Cenizo site best option for KCS' international bridge, study shows


A TranSystems Corp. study has pinpointed the optimal location for Kansas City Southern's planned cross-border rail bridge. The study shows "Site 3," between Rio Bravo and El Cenizo, Texas, is the "most feasible" location among five proposed sites for a bridge between Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.

KCS commissioned the study to analyze potential locations and gather necessary information for a U.S. permit application. Site 3 is the most viable location for improving border security and efficiency, removing through traffic from Laredo and Nuevo Laredo, accommodating KCS' operating needs and addressing the railroad's environmental concerns, the study shows.

The site also would support connections to three yards: Union Pacific Railroad's Port Laredo facility, The Texas Mexican Railway Co.'s Laredo Yard and Kansas City Southern de México S.A. de C.V.'s Sanchez Yard. Other sites likely would cause one or more of the yards to be "stranded," TranSystems determined.

In October, KCS announced plans to seek expedited U.S. and Mexican federal authority approvals to construct an international rail bridge over the Rio Grande River. The Class I expects to file U.S. and Mexican permit applications next year and provide officials in both countries a detailed application for review by 2008's end.

KCS currently has a memorandum of understanding with the state of Tamaulipas and city of Nuevo Laredo to work together on the project, and plans to work closely with local and state officials in Texas and Tamaulipas to coordinate the project.

"This project and its East Loop Bypass Corridor alignment will be the best way to get rail traffic out of downtown Laredo and Nuevo Laredo in the future, expand rail capacity, improve safety and convenience for motorists, and enhance security along the entire corridor," said Warren Erdman, KCS executive vice president of corporate affairs, in a prepared statement.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 12/12/2007