ASLRRA President Chuck Baker

Short Lines Are Dependable and Get the Job Done

ASLRRA PERSPECTIVE, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: The story of “The Little Engine That Could” began as an American folktale popularized by various authors in the 1900s. An early published version of the tale appeared in 1906 under the title “Thinking One Can” in Wellspring for Young People, a national Sunday School Publication. A subsequent version was published in 1910 in the Kindergarten Review under the title “The Pony Engine.” In 1930, the story became widely known under the title “The Little Engine That Could” after a Chicago publishing house released it as an illustrated children’s book that was used in schools to teach children the value of optimism and hard work.

Rendering Courtesy of British Columbia, via Flickr.

Transit Briefs: TransLink, Calgary Transit, CDOT, PANYNJ, NYMTA

Eight new station names are announced for TransLink’s Surrey Langley SkyTrain extension. Also, a section of Calgary Transit’s LRT Red Line reopens following a nine-day closure; the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) explores the market for passenger train cars and locomotives; the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) installs five new test turnstiles for a new fare payment system; and the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announces the installation of wide-aisle fare gates and a new customer service center at Sutphin Boulevard-Archer Avenue-JFK Airport Station.

Pictured, Left to Right: Paulo Faria, Design Director for Transportation Architecture, HDR; Martin Ellwood, Senior Project Director, HNTB; and Hayes Morrison, Undersecretary, MassDOT.
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People News: HDR, HNTB, MassDOT

Paulo Faria rejoins HDR as Design Director for Transportation Architecture. Also, HNTB appoints Martin Ellwood as Senior Project Director, supporting rail infrastructure projects; and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) elevates Hayes Morrison to Undersecretary.

David Nahass, Railway Age Financial Editor

It’s Not the Size of the Gift. It’s the Cost!

FINANCIAL EDGE, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: Everyone’s Holidays are costing more in 2023. Heck, everything costs more in 2023. After three years of rising prices, it is taxing. “Financial Edge” has spilled plenty of ink regarding rising railcar costs. If some is good, perhaps more is, well, maybe not better but necessary.

( TierneyMJ)
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UMD Issues Call for Papers on Rail Cybersecurity

The University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) is seeking papers on cyber and digital information in railway engineering and operations for a short course and workshop, to be held March 7-8, 2024.

Figure 1. Training course in progress at the ARTC located at the TTC. (TTC Operated by ENSCO)

Alternative Power, Specialized Response

TTC Operated by ENSCO, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: Addressing the critical need for specialized hazmat training in lithium-ion battery and hydrogen railway vehicle emergencies.

WMATA photo

WMATA Reinstates Auto Doors on Red Line

Following weeks of certifying operators to use Automatic Door Operation on some Red Line trains, the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission (WMSC) has given concurrence to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) to allow the agency to fully operate in Auto Door mode on the Red Line, beginning Dec. 5.

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Brighter Days Ahead

2024 FREIGHT RAIL OUTLOOK, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: In more ways than one, 2023 was marked by a few dark clouds. In 2024, look for them to scatter, pushed by warmer


Oberman, the Pragmatist, May be Missed

WATCHING WASHINGTON, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: News item: Surface Transportation Board (STB) Chairperson Martin J. Oberman will not seek renomination to a second term and depart in “early 2024.” Since his

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2023 Was a Very Good Year — Really!

FROM THE EDITOR, RAILWAY AGE DECEMBER 2023 ISSUE: A tumultuous 2023 comes to a close on many positive notes, enough to say that, on balance, it was a very good year (to

“Nonpolice community service officers” at Metro Transit in Minneapolis/St. Paul began checking fares Dec. 4 on the Blue and Green light rail lines. (Metro Transit Photograph)

Transit Briefs: Metro Transit, SCVTA

Metro Transit in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., launches a fare enforcement program. Also, more affordable housing will be built on Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (SCVTA)-owned property.


Union Pacific Running Well

Since the early 2022 Service Crisis, we’ve seen the U.S. railroads, one-by-one, reach a point where service is arguably fully restored, at least to where it was prior. CSX was quick to

“I said from the beginning that Norfolk Southern would be here for the long haul and we will be here to see this community through,” NS CEO Alan Shaw told attendees of a Nov. 30 economic development roundtable discussion in East Palestine, Ohio. (NS Photograph)

Class I Briefs: CPKC, NS

Canadian Pacific Kansas City (CPKC) in November unloaded its first 8,500-foot grain train in the U.S. Also, Norfolk Southern (NS) late last month held a roundtable discussion in East Palestine, Ohio, with local officials, focusing on long-term economic opportunities for businesses and residents.

WMATA Addressing ‘Pressing’ Problem

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) has begun a wheelset retrofit program on its problematic 748-unit Kawasaki Rail USA 7000-series railcar fleet to return them to service and resume a “normal”