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6/19/2001



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Class I, regional and DOT team up to fund 286k trackwork


Burlington Northern Santa Fe, Iowa Interstate Railroad Ltd. (IAIS) and Iowa Department of Transportation June 19 agreed to co-fund a project designed to rehabilitate 78 track miles between the Quad Cities and Homestead, Iowa — and enable the 500-mile regional to handle 286,000-pound cars on the line.
The $4.2 million project, which the three partners plan to begin later this month and complete by year-end, would include replacing wood crossties ($1.9 million), ballast ($1.2 million) and heavy rail ($1.1 million), as well as improving bridges and completing other work.
"This is the largest Iowa Interstate track project since we built our Newton Intermodal Terminal," said John Roy, IAIS president and chief executive officer, in a prepared statement.
The track segment carries the heaviest concentration of IAIS' traffic, much of which is interchanged to BNSF for western and southern destinations.
"Our commitment illustrates our willingness to invest in our connecting regional and short-line partners, to permit their handling of heavy 286k cars, where we find economic justification for doing so," said Pete Rickerhauser, BNSF vice president, network development.
The track improvement will be partially funded by an Iowa Rail Revolving Loan Fund, which Iowa DOT administers to assist in railroad-related improvements involving mainlines, branch lines, switching yards, sidings, intermodal yards and grade separations.


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