Since startup on July 19, 1987, the 577-mile North Dakota-based railroad’s annual volume has tripled, reaching 60,000 carloads in 2012. Grain accounts for more than half of the railroad’s shipments. Other principal commodities include corn sweetener, sugar, ethanol, corn feed byproducts, and fertilizer.
“June 22 was the day we said thanks a million,” said RRV&W President Andrew Thompson. “This is a major milestone for our company. We’d like to extend a big thank you to our customers, employees, connecting carriers, local and state officials, and friends who helped make this possible. The Red River Valley & Western—one of 550 short-line railroads nationwide—has been able to turn a collection of unprofitable branch lines into a successful small railroad. Thanks to America’s short lines, thousands of rural communities have been able to retain their railroads as a valuable shipment option. Otherwise, lines would have been abandoned, further jeopardizing development opportunities.”