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Intermodal up, carloads down in latest week For the week ending Feb. 6, 2016, North American freight rail traffic experienced a 10% gain in intermodal, and a corresponding drop in carloads, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported on Feb. 10, 2016.
Retractable bridge plates a first for Brightline Brightline, the higher-speed intercity passenger rail service to be offered by Florida East Coast subsidiary All Aboard Florida, will be the first North American passenger trains equipped with retractable bridge plates for high-level boarding platforms.
Ackman to NS shareholders: I have a way to make you talk with me In what some industry observers believe may be a final attempt—short of a proxy battle—by hedge fund head Bill Ackman at a hostile takeover of Norfolk Southern, Canadian Pacific on Feb. 9, 2016, notified NS of its intent to submit a resolution to NS shareholders “to ask their board of directors to engage in good faith discussions with CP regarding a business combination transaction.”
Railway Age seeks nominations for 2016 Short Line/Regional Railroad of the Year Railway Age is now accepting entries for its annual Short Line/Regional Railroad of the Year competition. Short lines and regionals—and there are more than 500 of them—are invited to submit entries describing outstanding achievement in one or a combination of areas.
Metrolinx sets Toronto RER options GTA (Greater Toronto Area) region public transportation agency Metrolinx outlined the four options being considered for the core of the Toronto Regional Express Rail (RER) network at a board meeting on Feb. 10, 2016.

Breaking News

retractable-bridge-plates-a-first-for-brightline
February 12, 2016
Brightline, the higher-speed intercity passenger rail service to be offered by Florida East Coast subsidiary All Aboard Florida, will be the first North American passenger trains equipped with retractable bridge plates for high-level boarding platforms. Brightline and carbuilder Siemens collaborated with...
the-year-ahead-in-washington
February 12, 2016
Washington is a rat hole worth watching because, as the politically savvy know, lawmakers and regulators can inflict unexpected, unprovoked and unjustified wounds. Typically, in a Presidential election year, legislative output by Congress is a slow order. This Presidential election year...
mbta-awards-contract-for-beverly-salem-bridge-repairs
February 12, 2016
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has awarded a $16.2 million contract to J.F. White Contracting Company for repairs on the railroad bride between Beverly and Salem, Mass, the agency announced Feb. 11, 2016. According to The Salem News, the project, which...
metrolink-trains-to-operate-at-full-speed-on-91-perris-valley-line
February 12, 2016
In preparation for Metrolink passenger rail service on the expansion of the 91/Perris Valley Line (91/PVL), this weekend test trains will operate at higher speeds between Downtown Riverside and South Perris, the commuter rail service announced on Feb. 11, 2016....
strike-lockout-looming-at-nj-transit
February 11, 2016
No progress has been made in contract talks between the New Jersey Transit Rail Labor Coalition, which consists of 11 unions representing more than 4,000 workers, and NJ Transit. A strike or lockout may occur in Mid-March, leaving tens of...

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Blogs and More

why-occupancy-=-vitality
February 11, 2016
You remember this from not so long ago, don’t you?: “In much of Asia and Europe, engineers are protected by a technology known as positive train control or PTC.”
government-advocacy-is-protected-speech
January 19, 2016
News item: Canadian Pacific (CP) is pursuing a hostile takeover of Norfolk Southern (NS). CP is asking the U.S. Justice Department to investigate whether NS and other U.S.-based major railroads—some of which oppose the takeover—are unlawfully conspiring for “the primary purpose of restraining trade.” CP...
stb-now-showing-the-letters
January 08, 2016
Everything is out in the open, as it should be. Today (January 8, 2016), the Surface Transportation Board established a page on its website, “Major Railroad Mergers and Consolidations Correspondence,” that contains all the correspondence connected to the proposed merger of Canadian Pacific and Norfolk...
show-us-the-letters-stb
January 06, 2016
On January 5, 2016, Reuters published a story containing excerpts of letters reportedly sent to the Surface Transportation Board by industry groups representing several major Norfolk Southern freight customers. The letters ask the STB to reject a merger of Canadian Pacific and NS, should a...
centrist-approach-may-quiet-stb-debate
December 30, 2015
The critical takeaway from enactment in December of the Surface Transportation Board Reauthorization Act, S.808, is that, absent headline-capturing abuse of captive shippers by railroads, it is unlikely Congress will refocus anytime soon on diluting railroad market power.