Friday, August 17, 2012

BNSF Plans Washington Rail Improvements, Expansion

BNSF Railway says it plans to invest about $106 million on maintenance and rail capacity improvement and expansion projects within Washington State this year, including one near the Port of Longview.

“BNSF’s investments will improve our ability to provide rail freight services to Washington businesses and communities and will expand opportunities to create more jobs and growth for the Washington economy,” railway chair and CEO Matthew K. Rose said.

Capacity enhancement projects in the state include the construction of a new lead to access the Port of Longview, as well as signal upgrades for federally mandated positive train control.

The railway says it is also continuing its track maintenance program in Washington, which includes 1,020 miles of track surfacing and undercutting work as well as the replacement of 56 miles of rail and about 178,000 ties.

The planned capital investments in Washington are part of BNSF’s total 2012 capital commitment of $3.9 billion. The largest component of the capital plan is spending $2.1 billion on BNSF's core network and related assets. BNSF also plans to spend approximately $1.1 billion on locomotive, freight car and other equipment acquisitions, many of which will serve Washington. The program also includes about $300 million for federally mandated positive train control and $400 million for terminal, line and intermodal expansion and efficiency projects.

In May the railway announced it plans to spend $120 million on rail capacity improvement and maintenance projects within California, including installation of an automated gate system at its Hobart Intermodal Facility in the Los Angeles area to increase the velocity of container/trailer processing.
The California plan also includes 786 miles of track surfacing and undercutting work, the replacement of 40 miles of rail and about 377,000 ties and train control signal upgrades.