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Rail News: Union Pacific Railroad

UP improves Donner Pass tunnels to bolster double-stack operations


Last week, Union Pacific Railroad opened the Donner Pass route to double-stack traffic after completing a 12-month tunnel improvement project.

The project called for improving clearances in 15 restricted tunnels between Rocklin and Truckee, Calif.; upgrading 30 miles of signals to centralized traffic control standards to eliminate dark territory; lowering floors in two tunnels; and increasing stability in five tunnels.

The Donner Pass route is about 73 miles shorter than UP’s Feather River Canyon intermodal route. The project enables the railroad to reduce transit time by up to three hours, improving service to northern California and the Port of Oakland.

In addition, the project enables UP to operate up to 9,000-foot trains, a 58 percent increase compared with 5,700-foot trains that run through Feather River Canyon.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/24/2009