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The Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) recently created an Iowa Rail Toolkit to provide new freight-rail shippers and economic development professionals an introduction to railroad shipping concepts, practices and access.The toolkit's resources are designed to make it easier and more understandable to ship freight by rail in the state. The resources include economic development information and a directory of the 18 railroads that operate in Iowa, including BNSF Railway Co., Canadian Pacific, CN, Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway Co., Iowa Interstate Railroad Ltd., Iowa Northern Railway Co., Norfolk Southern Railway and Union Pacific Railroad. Contact information and a basic profile is provided for each railroad.With assistance from the Iowa Economic Development Authority, IDOT assembled the toolkit to support the exploration of rail transportation services in the state, department officials said in the toolkit's overview."Iowa shippers benefit from a [3,854-mile] rail network that moves the equivalent of 18.7 million truckloads per year," they said.
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