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Rail News Home Rail Industry Trends

5/29/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

NS, Delaware reach bridge-rehab deal


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Norfolk Southern Corp. and the state of Delaware May 29 agreed to rehabilitate the Shellpot Bridge, which crosses the Christiana River in Wilmington.
Delaware will fund the bridge's $13 million restoration; NS will pay the state a fee for each rail car that crosses the bridge for 20 years.
State and NS officials believe the rehabilitated bridge will provide the Port of Wilmington greater flexibility in scheduling inbound and outbound trains.
When the bridge returns to service in 2003, port and Delmarva Peninsula shippers would more easily access NS.
The swing-style drawbridge originally was constructed in 1888 on timber piers, which were replaced in 1951 by a concrete foundation. The 725-foot bridge's moveable portion is 242 feet long.
Conrail discontinued service over the bridge in December 1994, when the
structure's foundation no longer could support heavy freight trains. Since
that time, freight trains moving through Wilmington have had to operate on
Amtrak's Northeast Corridor through the Wilmington Transit Center. (NS serves the port and peninsula over the corridor, which limits freight trains to periods when passenger trains aren't scheduled.)


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