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BNSF Announces $1 Billion In Upgrades To Corridor Through MN & N - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

BNSF Announces $1 Billion In Upgrades To Corridor Through MN & ND

BNSF Announces $1 Billion In Upgrades To Corridor Through MN & ND

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Today BNSF Railway announced a one billion dollar investment to upgrade rail capacity in its north corridor which includes Minnesota and North Dakota.

The plan includes more tracks next to the mainline to improve train traffic and passing along routes that run through Fargo, Grand Forks, Bismarck, and Minot.

BNSF will also upgrade to a centralized traffic control system to improve train movements between Fargo and Bismarck.

Shipments, and travel by rail has been bogged down by delays across the area due to increased rail traffic from the oil boom out west.


STATEMENT FROM BNSF:


BNSF has kicked-off its plan to invest approximately $1 billion to improve and expand rail capacity in states along its Northern Corridor, which spans the northern U.S. between the Pacific Northwest and Chicago. Some of the projects that will help expand capacity and improve traffic flow for all freight and passenger trains for current and future growth on those routes are well underway.

"Following our record capital investment in 2013 of $4 billion, we are making the most significant capital investment in our history of approximately $5 billion this year," said Carl Ice, president and chief executive officer of BNSF Railway. "Our capital investments along the Northern Corridor are critical to expanding our capacity to support the region’s rapidly growing economy, improving our ability to meet our customers’ expectations and ensuring our railroad remains the safest mode of ground transportation for freight."

Highlights of BNSF’s planned capital investments along the Northern Corridor include parts of North Dakota, Washington, Montana, Illinois and Minnesota.




North Dakota

BNSF plans to invest approximately $400 million in North Dakota to expand rail capacity, replace and maintain the network infrastructure, and continue the implementation of Positive Train Control technology.

Expansion projects include:




·         Completing construction of a second mainline track, referred to as double track, between Minot, N.D. and Glasgow, Mont. to expand capacity for all traffic moving on this route in the Northern Corridor.

·         Constructing new sidings, tracks adjacent to the mainline track, to expand capacity by enabling more trains to meet and pass one another on the predominately single track routes between:

·         Fargo, N.D. and Grand Forks, N.D.

·         Fargo, N.D. and Minot, N.D.

·         Bismarck, N.D. and Glendive, Mont.

·         Minot, N.D. and Grand Forks, N.D.

·         Upgrading to a Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) signal system to improve train movements between Bismarck, N.D. and Fargo, N.D.

* Maintenance projects include:




·         Surfacing and undercutting of more than 930 miles of track.

·         Replacing about 110 miles of rail.

·         Replacing more than 330,000 ties.

Minnesota



BNSF plans to invest approximately $120 million in Minnesota to expand rail capacity, replace and maintain the network, and continue the implementation of PTC technology.

Expansion projects include:




·         Parking expansions at the St. Paul Intermodal Facility in St. Paul, Minn.

·         Adding track extensions in Gunn, Minn.

·         Construction of a new siding and new interchange tracks close to the Canadian border near St. Vincent, Minn.

* Maintenance projects include:




·         Surfacing and undercutting of more than 600 miles of track.

·         Replacing about 72 miles of rail.

·         Replacing more than 340,000 ties.

The investments BNSF is making along the Northern Corridor will benefit the movement of all commodities in the states along that route. This year, BNSF also plans to invest approximately $30 million in South Dakota, approximately $50 million in Wisconsin and approximately $10 million in Idaho for projects that either expand capacity or help maintain the network infrastructure. South Dakota will benefit from BNSF Northern Corridor investments made in neighboring states. Most (approximately 75 to 80 percent) of the corn and soybeans produced in South Dakota is exported with the majority of those crops being delivered to ports in the Pacific Northwest on BNSF’s network.

The planned capital investments along the Northern Corridor are part of BNSF’s record 2014 capital commitment of $5 billion, which BNSF announced in February. As part of this plan, BNSF plans to spend approximately $1.6 billion on locomotive, freight car and other equipment acquisitions, which will be put into service all across its network. Since the year 2000, BNSF has invested $42 billion to improve and expand its freight rail network.




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