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Archive for February 28th, 2013

Federal Court Again Rules in Favor of Port Mackenzie Rail Extension

February 28th, 2013

For a second time, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has denied a request to block construction on the Port Mackenzie Rail Extension, which will link the main line of the Alaska Railroad to Port Mackenzie in Alaska.

The order was issued in San Francisco, denying an emergency appeal by Cook Inlet Keeper, Sierra Club and Alaska Survival.

In mid-February, Cook Inlet Keeper lost in federal court in Anchorage, Alaska, on its request for an injunction on construction, when U.S. District Judge Ralph Beistline ruled in favor of the 32-mile rail link.

The environmental groups can file a similar request on a regular timeline to halt construction in the 9th Circuit, despite the emergency motion being denied.

This summer, four segments of the rail embankment will be under construction.

Beistline has not yet ruled on the merits of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ decision to issue a permit approving construction of the rail link in wetlands.

The 9th Circuit has ruled on the merits of the rail project already regarding a different federal agency, the Surface Transportation Board. In January, the 9th Circuit panel approved the environmental impact statement to mitigate impacts on wetlands.

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CSX Names First “Select Site” in Tennessee

February 28th, 2013

CSX has chosen the North Etowah Industrial Park in McMinn County, Tenn., as the first Select Site in the state.

CSX’s Select Site program reviews manufacturing and distribution development properties that are positioned to make rapid use of freight rail service. The designation confirms that standard land use issues have been addressed and that the site is ready for development.

“Through the Select Site program, we can increase speed to market and lower up-front development risk for companies seeking industrial property for manufacturing operations,” said Clark Robertson, assistant vice president, regional development, CSX. “This program helps communities identify and prepare sites that can compete for new investments and job creation.”

CSX introduced the program in 2012. It has partnered with The Austin Company to screen candidate sites and assist communities with the application and certification process.

“This 270-acre site offers a strategic location opportunity as it lies between the growing cities of Knoxville and Chattanooga,” said Jonathan Gemmen, senior location consultant, The Austin Company. “The site is clear, adjacent to the CSX mainline and has all the utilities on-site in ample capacity.”

CSX noted the efforts of the McMinn County Board of Commissioners, the City of Etowah and the McMinn County Economic Development Authority in achieving the certification.

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TBG Holdings Takes Aim at Freight Rail Industry

February 28th, 2013

TBG Holdings has acquired Monkey Rock and will reposition the company to compete in the short line and regional freight railroad industry.

The Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based financial consulting firm has also announced that John Dent, Monkey Rock’s CEO, has resigned. He assisted in the transition of Monkey Rock.

The TBG management team will work immediately to transform Monkey Rock into a rail-focused holding company. As part of the transition, the new company will be renamed Continental Rail.

Wayne A. August has been appointed the new president of Continental Rail. August is a 22-year veteran of the rail industry. He was most recently employed by Patriot Rail as vice president of corporate development. Prior to that, he was with RailAmerica for 10 years, where his last position was vice president of corporate strategy. He started his career in 1991 as a management trainee with CSX.

Tim Hart has been named as the new chief financial officer, who will work alongside August. Hart has more than 30 years of accounting and finance experience, including 10 years with KPMG. He has also worked with companies such as RailAmerica and Patriot Rail over the past 25 years.

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Stadler to Supply 48 FLIRTs to Hungary

February 28th, 2013

Stadler Rail has won a tender for 48 electric multiple units issued jointly by Hungarian State Railways MÁV and Austrian-Hungarian regional operator GYSEV.

The result of the tender was announced on 26 February,  and the delivery contract will be signed by the parties during the next 30 days.

Under the contract, Stadler will deliver 42 FLIRT units for MÁV and 6 units for GYSEV.The new four-part trains will be single voltage low floor vehicles with a seating capacity of 200 and a maximum speed of 160 km/h. The last train will have to be delivered by Stadler by Autumn 2015.

After the delivery of the current order, altogether 112 FLIRT units will be operating in Hungary.

Stadler is adding to its manufacturing capacity in Hungary as well. It is expanding the capacity of its aluminum carbody welding unit there and also is establishing a center for work on bogies (trucks).  A significant part of the production of the current trains will occur in Stadler’s factory in Szolnok, too, the company said.

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