Class I

ACWR Seeks to Acquire NS’s Piedmont Subdivision

Class III rail carrier Aberdeen Carolina and Western Railway Company (ACWR) has filed a verified notice of exemption to acquire from Norfolk Southern (NS) the approximate 104-mile Piedmont Subdivision, which, pursuant to a Lease and Option Purchase Agreement, ACWR has operated since 1989, the Surface Transportation Board (STB) announced on Dec. 1.

Week 47: U.S. Rail Traffic Falls Below 2021, 2019 Levels

For the week ending Nov. 26, 2022 (Week 47), total U.S. rail traffic was down 4.1% compared with the same week last year, the Association of American Railroads’ (AAR) reported on Nov. 30. Traffic was down 21% compared with the same week in pre-pandemic 2019, according to Susquehanna Financial Group (SFG) Analyst Bascome Majors.

JAXPORT Announces New Trans-Atlantic Service

Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT), which is served by 40 daily trains via CSX and Norfolk Southern (NS), as well as regional railroad Florida East Coast Railway (FEC), announced on Nov. 28 that it has partnered with U.K.-based Ellerman City Liners to offer direct container service to/from three destinations in Europe.

CN President and CEO Tracy Robinson (right) presents STARS President and CEO Andrea Robertson (left) with a $100,000 donation for the non-profit.

Class I Briefs: CN, NS

CN announces $100,000 donation to Shock Trauma Air Rescue Service (STARS). Also, Norfolk Southern’s (NS) Atlanta headquarters wins U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Chrysalis Award in the “New Construction Transformation” category.

CSX President and CEO Joe Hinrichs (right) and CSX Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer Diana Sorfleet (left) with Drive to Succeed winner Bridge and Building Foreman, Engineering David Zorn (middle).

Class I Briefs: CSX, CN, KCS

CSX announces winners of its third Drive to Succeed attendance campaign. Also, CN’s EcoChampions improve their efficiency by 30%; Kansas City Southern’s (KCS) Holiday Express attracts more than 6,700 visitors and announces challenge grant to benefit The Salvation Army.

Edmond (“Ed”) Harris

COO Shake-Up at CN

CN on Nov. 28 reported that 40-year railroad veteran Edmond (“Ed”) Harris has been named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer (COO), effective immediately. He succeeds Rob Reilly.

First Solar is planning a photovoltaic (PV) solar module manufacturing facility in Alabama’s Lawrence County—its fourth in America. (Photograph Courtesy of First Solar)

First Solar to Build $1.1B Alabama Plant

Tempe, Ariz.-based First Solar, Inc., has selected a Norfolk Southern (NS)-served site in north Alabama for a $1.1 billion photovoltaic (PV) solar-module manufacturing facility.

Norfolk Southern GoRail and Veterans Locomotives Pulling Covered Hoppers – Inman Yard; Atlanta, Ga. (Caption and Photograph Courtesy of Norfolk Southern)

AAR: North American Rail Volume Down 1.9% Through 46 Weeks

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) now has 46 weeks of traffic data for 2022 (ending Nov. 19). Total North American carload and intermodal traffic dipped 1.9% from the same point last year—with decreases in the U.S. and Canada, and an increase in Mexico.