The Greenbrier Cos. Friday reported fiscal 2012 first-quarter revenue of $398.2 million, which it said was “double the $198.9 million realized in the prior year’s first quarter,” and net earnings of $15.5 million, or 48 cents per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $2.3 million, or 11 cents per share, in the comparable quarter of a year ago.
Shippers representing manufacturing, consumer goods, energy, and other markets made commitments in 2011 to develop new or expanded facilities on CSX and its connecting short lines. A total investment of $1.4 billion will ultimately yield more than $230 million in annual freight revenue, said Clark Robertson, assistant vice president-regional development.
Though a joint public/private effort to initiate light rail transit in Detroit has faltered, with public money now targeted to launch a 110-mile Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) network, state and local elected officials now acknowledge Detroit’s private sector will continue to pursue LRT.
Indeed, private-sector interests, known as M-1 Rail, in essence have insisted on resurrecting their original plan for a short 3.4-mile starter LRT line (as depicted at left). And though the private sector holds to the LRT idea, last week Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and Detroit Mayor Dave Bing were the ones noting Detroit could still add LRT to the mix as part of a larger BRT plan.
"We see light rail as a part of regional transportation, so light rail is not dead," Mayor Bing said last Friday at a news conference attended by Gov. Snyder and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "It's back on the table." The amount of public money or effort to be dedicated to the LRT plan, however, remains unclear. M-1 Rail, comprised of private investors and philanthropic groups, includes Dan Gilbert of Quicken Loans, Roger Penske of Penske Corp., Peter Karmanos of Compuware, and the Troy, Mich.-based Kresge Foundation. The group first proposed adding LRT to Woodland Avenue in 2007.
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority will continue contracting out its regional rail passenger services, rejecting the option to operate trains itself. MBTA instead may opt for longer-term contracts with any operator involved.
Colo Railroad Builders, a provider of railroad construction and maintenance services to industrial, Class I, and short line railroads, says it has appointed Cene Cooley vice president of Operations in Texas.
Norfolk Southern Corp. said Monday it participated in the location of 73 new industries and the expansion of 27 existing industries along its rail lines during 2011, totaling an investment of about $9.5 billion.
Canadian Pacific Chairman of the Board John Cleghorn sent a letter Monday to shareholders describing “a multiyear plan to drive volume growth, expand the network, and control costs.”
The New York State Senate Monday confirmed Joseph Lhota as the new chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, replacing Jay Walder, who departed in October. Lhota had been serving as MTA executive director for five weeks pending his confirmation.
California’s High-Speed Rail Authority should not consider a proposed route for high speed rail along Interstate 5 in southern California and instead should study a proposed route through Palmdale, according to a study recommendation released Monday.
A lockout at Electro-Motive Diesel Canada’s London, Ontario, plant that began on New Year’s Day is spurring cross-border labor issues between the U.S. and Canada.
During a ceremony Tuesday at the Transnet Rail Engineering (TRE) facility in Koedoespoort, South Africa, Transnet SOC Ltd. and GE South Africa Technologies Ltd. (GESAT) marked the signing of a contract for 43 new Model C30ACi locomotives for South Africa, bringing the total number of GE locomotives ordered to 143 since December 2009.
Bloomfield, N.J.-based Atlantic Track on Tuesday announced several personnel appointments, many involving staffing at the company’s new Southeast regional office in Atlanta.
A lobbying effort by the trucking industry could encourage Congress to increase truck sizes and/or truck weight on the nation’s roadways in the next surface transportation bill now being considered in both the House and the Senate, according to Railway Supply Institute President Tom Simpson.
Parking commuter benefits will rise from $230 to $240 per month in 2012, but corresponding public transit user benefits provided by employers will be cut severely, due to the inability of Congress to reach consensus on the matter.
Users of Toronto Transit Commission’s Scarborough Line may be without rail service for four years, beginning in 2015, as the line is converted to light rail transit (LRT) from its current operation (shown here).
“The phase-in of Scarborough will be from the fall of 2015 to 2019,” TTC Chief General Manager Gary Webster said at a recent city budget committee hearing.
The line originally was to be converted by 2015, but the election of Mayor Rob Ford, more supportive of subway construction than LRT extensions, put the project’s status is doubt. Webster said the conversion of the Scarborough Line will be coordinated with related extension of the Eglinton LRT line, which now will be placed largely underground (and driving up capital costs) due to community input.
U.S. freight carload traffic for the week ending Dec. 24, 2011 was up a hefty 11.9% compared with the same week one year ago, the Association of American Railroads said Thursday. U.S. intermodal volume for the same week was up 22.9% from the same week last year.
Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley last week said the state will budget about $69 million in state funding for engineering work related to the proposed 16-mile Purple Line Light Rail project.
The proposed LRT line, planned to link with Washington, D.C.’s Metro rail system in at least four locations, arcs across D.C.’s northern suburbs across two counties in Maryland, from Bethesda to New Carrollton. Current construction costs are estimated at $1.925 billion.
The $69 million reportedly will cover costs for the next two years, and will be generated from increases in certificate and title fees for vehicles, as well as from higher fees for vanity tags and dealer processing charges, according to a spokesman from the Maryland Department of Transportation. While just 3.6% of the overall cost, the $69 million is politically significant, given past opposition to or neglect of the Purple Line proposal from previous state administrations.
As part of the launch of its 150th anniversary celebration website, Union Pacific Railroad says it will award more than $35,000 in prizes to the top entries that remake the company’s classic 1970s television commercial, “We Can Handle It.”
The Railway Supply Institute has noted a lobbying effort by the trucking industry could encourage Congress to increase truck sizes and/or truck weight on the nation’s roadways in the next surface transportation bill, now being considered; in both the House and the Senate. RSI calls this effort “the biggest threat we have seen in more than 20 years.”
China’s official news agency, Xinhua, announced that the Ministry of Railways over the past weekend launched a test train capable of achieving 500 km/h (310 mph) cruising speeds. CSR Corp. Ltd. built the train.