Monday, January 28, 2013

NS budgets $2 billion for 2013 capex

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Norfolk Southern Monday disclosed its intent to invest $2 billion in 2013 for capital improvements. The largest portion of that amount, $831 million, will be for rail right-of-way upgrades, the company said.

Equipment spending will include $420 million, covering: acquistion of new locomotives and rebuilding and upgrading existing units; re-body coal cars; purchasing multilevel cars to handle increased automotive traffic; and purchasing intermodal containers and chassis.

NS has earmarked $229 million, about 11% of the 2013 budget, for continued implementation of Positive Train Control.

Investments in facilities and terminals are anticipated to be $203 million, and include: the continuation of a multiyear project to expand Bellevue rail yard in northern Ohio; construction of a new intermodal terminal in Charlotte, N.C., as part of Norfolk Southern's Crescent Corridor; completion of a new locomotive service facility in Conway, Pa.; and new and expanded bulk transfer facilities.

NS also expects to spend $84 million in infrastructure improvements to increase main line capacity, accommodate traffic growth, and provide NS' match for innovative public-private partnership investments such as CREATE in Chicago and the Crescent Corridor. The company says such investment "will improve the nation's transportation infrastructure, reduce fuel consumption and air pollution, and relieve highway congestion by moving freight off highways onto rail."

Technology investments of $57 million are planned for new and upgraded systems and computers to enhance safety and improve operating efficiency and equipment utilization.