In a dramatic move, the Toronto City Council on Wednesday voted 26-17 in favor of maintaining (or reinstating) an earlier plan for extensive surface rail transit expansion in Canada’s largest city, going against the design of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who favors more subway construction and has declared an end to a supposed “war on cars.” Adding to the drama, Mayor Ford has dismissed the Council’s vote as an irritant not worth consideration.
Not taking initial success for granted, the Railway Supply Institute on Wednesday sent a message to its “contact officers” urging them to spread the concern about potential increases in truck sizes and weight "to your employees at your facilities throughout the United States," which RSI believes the full House of Representatives may still consider. "Make no mistake—if this legislation passes it will adversely affect our industry and our nation's infrastructure," RSI said.
The Federal Railroad Administration has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that it says will "require railroads to train and qualify employees in safety-related positions on federal railroad safety laws, regulations, and orders."
Austin, Tex., may soon get weekend passenger rail service on its Red Line, if details with Capital Metro can be ironed out.
Amtrak and the Michigan Department of Transportation have received federal approval to increase maximum speeds of Amtrak trains in western Michigan and northern Indiana to 110 mph, following successful installation and testing of a Positive Train Control system on Amtrak-owned trackage between Kalamazoo, Mich., and Porter, Ind., part of its Chicago-to-Detroit service route.
Skanska USA’s civil construction business unit announced Wednesday it has signed a $261.9 million contract with New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority for the Second Avenue Subway project in New York City.
Greenwich, Conn.-based Genesee & Wyoming Inc. on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter net income $33.3 million, compared with net income of $19.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2010. GWI's diluted earnings per share (EPS) in the fourth quarter of 2011 were 77 cents with 42.9 million weighted average shares outstanding, compared with diluted EPS of 47 cents with 42.3 million weighted average shares outstanding in the fourth quarter of 2010.
The American Public Transportation Association said Tuesday it will hold a media conference call Wednesday to brief callers on the “negative impact” the House Ways and Means Committees’ surface transportation proposal holds for public transit.
Uralvagonzavod, Russia-based OJSC and Bombardier Transportation reportedly have established a joint venture to manufacture streetcars for the world’s largest nation, signing a letter of intent.
RailComm has expanded its existing yard system at BNSF's mechanical facility in Memphis, Tenn. RailComm's Domain Operations Controller (DOC®) System is used to remotely control derails.
Neuilly-sur-Seine, France-based Thales Group said Monday it had landed a contract with Singapore’s SMRT Corp. Ltd.to supply its SelTrac Communications-Based Train Control (CBTC) to resignal SMRT’s North-South and East-West rail lines, covering a combined 100 kilometers (62 miles) and serving 54 stations. The contract is worth roughly $154 million.
Following the lead of New Jersey, San Diego County, Calif., and sister Texas city Austin in an effort to sway the Federal Railroad Administration on safety oversight—though taking a different approach—the Denton County Transportation Authority says it will seek an Alternative Vehicle Technology (AVT) waiver so that DCTA can operate new Stadler GTW diesel multiple-unit (DMU) trains without temporal (time-of-day) separation from freight trains.
The nation's freight railroads say they have reached a tentative agreement with the last of 13 labor unions, the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees.
Markup by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Thursday of its version of surface transportation reauthorization legislation, H.R. 7, included a 33-to-22 vote to remove bigger truck language from the bill. The Committee also inserted language seeking a comprehensive study to assess the impacts of heavier and longer trucks on safety, cost to the highway infrastructure and freight diversion.
Progress Rail has announced it is closing its London, Ontario, locomotive operation, where 450 workers have been locked out since New Year’s Day.
Full disclosure and credibility claim right upfront: I ride the bus. More than once a year. And more than one O/D pair. That’s just to make it clear that the Managing Editor of Railway Age isn’t completely blinded by, or supportive of only, the rail passenger mode. (I’m lucky; I get to ride the ferry, too.)
So: I ride the bus. All you BRT advocates out there, especially those arguing it’s “just like light rail, but cheaper”: Do you ride any bus at all, let alone any BRT?
U.S. freight carload traffic for the week ending Jan. 28, 2012 was down 2.8% compared with the fourth week of 2011, the Association of American Railroads said Thursday. By contrast, U.S. intermodal volume for the week rose 5.5% compared with the same week last year.
Intermodal container volume set a new record in 2011 with 12.4 million moves, beating former record-year 2007 by 3.7%, the Intermodal Associaton of North America (IANA) said Thursday.
The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Wednesday introduced a five-year surface transportation funding bill, a successor to the now-expired SAFETEA-LU, that would extend Congress’ mandated deadline for Positive Train Control (PTC) by five years, from Dec. 31, 2015, to Dec. 31, 2020. It also would revamp the Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) program--and allow larger and heavier trucks on U.S. highways
BNSF Railway Co. on Wednesday announced a planned 2012 capital commitment program of approximately $3.9 billion, up $400 million, or about 11.4%, from its 2011 capital spend of $3.5 billion.