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Rail News: Short Lines & Regionals

Columbia Basin eyes BNSF interchange upgrades; ARG Transportation promotes two execs


About 30 people attended a meeting on Monday in Moses Lake, Wash., to discuss the Connell Rail Interchange, a key rail interchange in eastern Washington where a Columbia Basin Railroad line intersects a BNSF Railway Co. line running between Spokane and Pasco, Wash.

Attendees included representatives from the Washington State Department of Transportation, Washington State Department of Commerce, Port of Moses Lake, Port of Warden, Port of Othello, Port of Royal Slope, BNSF and Columbia Basin Railroad.
The meeting included a presentation on the importance of the Connell Rail Interchange and the infrastructure issues that need to be addressed due to traffic growth on both rail lines. Over the past several years, a significant amount of economic development has occurred in communities on the Columbia Basin Railroad line, especially in Grant and Adams Counties, making the railroad one of the busiest short lines in Washington state, Columbia Basin officials said in a press release. The short line hauls more than 10,000 carloads annually of various agricultural and industrial commodities.

The Connell Rail Interchange was built nearly 100 years ago and its configuration is outdated and inefficient, Columbia Basin officials said. So, the interchange needs to be upgraded and improved to accommodate the tremendous rail traffic growth, they said.

Meanwhile, ARG Transportation Services announced that Coos Bay Rail Link Director of Rail Operations Darrell Rodley and San Pedro & Southwestern Railroad Manager of Operations Richard Archunde have been promoted to general managers of their respective companies.

To take effect on Jan. 1, the GM posts are newly created positions.

ARG Transportation Services acquired the San Pedro & Southwestern Railroad in November 2003 from RailAmerica Inc. The 133-mile Coos Bay Rail Link, which is owned by the International Port of Coos Bay, began operation in October 2011.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 12/19/2014