Author: Jim Blaze

Union Pacific re-thinks Brazos Yard timing

Union Pacific contractors were moving lots of dirt when this reporter visited the Brazos Yard site in Texas in November 2018. The location was to be the new crown of UP’s capabilities to improve and increase volume and service to the expanding customer base in the Houston and Gulf Coast chemical and petrol industry complex.

Matt Rose at REF 2019: It’s about growth—not cutting

RAIL EQUIPMENT FINANCE 2019, LA QUINTA, CALIF, March 5: BNSF Executive Chairman Matt Rose, nearing retirement, shared his views on the rail industry with Railway Age Editor-in-Chief William C. Vantuono and more than 400 attendees at Railroad Financial Corporation’s annual conference, organized by RFC President and Railway Age Financial Editor David Nahass and his staff. Rose talked extensively about Precision Scheduled Railroading (PSR), business growth, advanced technology and other topics.

New, potentially disruptive businesses

This is Jim Blaze, rail economist and teacher—sometimes a reporter; always one who questions. I’m concerned about how the “Big 7” railroads are going to address their next five to ten years of market position, taking the wealth they created, and turning it into an upgraded business model. Which one so far has laid out the best disruptive plan? Which one is struggling? And which one might simply be cashing out?

Disruptive thinking about railway capital requirements

It has been a bit more than a decade and a half since the rail industry, assisted by well-qualified consultants, alerted the public and industry watchers that economic growth would clearly require some form of a new partnership if the rail freight industry was to assemble the capital resources necessary to meet freight demand by about 2035.