With Railway Age since 1992, Bill Vantuono has broadened and deepened the magazine's coverage of the technological revolution that is so swiftly changing the industry. He has also strengthened Railway Age's leadership position in industry affairs with the conferences he conducts on operating passenger trains on freight railroads and communications-based train control.
OnTrackNorthAmerica (OTNA) and Cisco Systems Inc. have signed an MOU (memorandum of understanding) on a partnership “to build the next generation of transportation life-cycle cost and benefit measurement tools,” according to OTNA President and Founder Michael Sussman. “The purpose of this project is to develop clear, functional measures for future planning and investing in transportation infrastructure.”
During its 2015 fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2015, Caltrain reached a record in total ridership of more than 18.5 million passengers., a 54.8% percent increase from just five years ago, when Caltrain carried 12 million riders.
The Indiana Rail Road (INRD) is participating in Indiana Rail Safety Week, which runs the week of Aug. 23-29, by partnering with the Terre Haute Police Department and Indiana Operation Lifesaver for a grade crossing safety “blitz.”
The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded NJ Transit $71.4 million through the Federal Transit Administration’s Public Transportation Emergency Relief Program for repair, recovery and resiliency projects associated with Superstorm Sandy.
Hugely popular Pope Francis is visiting the U.S. in September, and Amtrak says its Northeast Corridor services are “uniquely suited” to carry passengers to and from various locations the Pope will be visiting in New York, Philadelphia and Washington and “is taking steps to prepare for an influx of rail passengers” by providing extra trains with added capacity to meet the anticipated demand.
Water Train Inc., an operating unit of Modoc Railroad, has begun solicitations of private persons, companies and municipal governments to participate in the operation of a water test train.
The Indiana Rail Road on Aug. 21, 2015 officially opened it new White River Bridge, which replaces a structure built 116 years ago incapable of handling modern heavy-haul freight trains.
Railway Age has selected noted railway industry industrial designer Cesar A. Vergara as recipient of the 2015 W. Graham Claytor Jr. Award for Distinguished Service to Passenger Transportation. Vergara will accept the award at the 22nd Annual Passenger Trains on Freight Railroads Conference in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 28, 2015.
Veteran railroad civil engineer and operating officer Alfred E. Fazio, P.E., has joined the staff of Railway Age as a contributing editor.
Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) General Manager Joseph M. Casey, who has led the Authority since 2008, will retire effective Sept. 30, 2015, after 34 years of service.
Lindsey Collins has joined the NRC (National Railroad Construction & Maintenance Association) as Vice President of Grassroots Advocacy. She comes to NRC from the Washington, D.C.-based multi-modal transportation policy think-tank Eno Center for Transportation, where she managed fundraising efforts for projects and working groups, including the Freight Working Group, of which the NRC is a member.
New York New Jersey Rail, LLC (NYNJR), a rail-barge short line wholly owned by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, has taken delivery on three new ultra-low-emissions SE10B diesel-electric switcher locomotives from Knoxville Locomotive Works (KLW). The contract, valued at $5.25 million, marks the first collaboration between the Port Authority and KLW.
The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) has decided to phase out its 10-unit fleet of AEM7 and HHP8 electric locomotives used for MARC regional/commuter rail service and replace them with eight new 125-mph “Charger” diesel-electric locomotives from Siemens Industry.
Canadian Pacific says it “is well positioned to provide best-in-class service to western Canadian grain shippers during the 2015-2016 crop-year.”
APTA (American Public Transportation Association) has named HART (Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation) Executive Director and CEO Daniel A. Grabauskas as U.S./North America representative to the policy board of the UITP (International Association of Public Transport) for the 2015-2017 term.
New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Chairman and CEO Thomas Prendergast has named MTA Bridges and Tunnels President James Ferrara as interim president of MTA New York City Transit (NYCT) effective Aug. 21, when NYCT President Carmen Bianco retires. Ferrara will serve as interim president until Bianco’s permanent replacement is named.
There is “big potential” to expand crude by rail shipments to West Coast ports and to California, but building the infrastructure “has proven painstakingly slow,” writes RBN Energy LLC analyst Rusty Braziel.
David L. Powell, Vice President Motive Power for Genesee & Wyoming, has accepted a two-year assignment effective Sept. 1, 2015 as Director of Rolling Stock for Saudi Arabia Railway Co. (SAR), a 1,700-mile carrier of minerals and other cargo and passengers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Union Pacific’s board of directors elected President and Chief Operating Officer Lance Fritz Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, effective Oct. 1, 2015. He succeeds John Koraleski as Chairman. Koraleski plans to retire Sept. 30 after a 43-year career at UP.
Demand for freight cars remains at a healthy level “in spite of a sluggish economy and extremely soft financial performances by the railroads,” Economic Planning Associates (EPA) said in its most recent quarterly railcar forecast, issued July 31, 2015.