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Thursday, May 06, 2010

Burroughs still interested in buying Keokuk, Iowa, rail bridge

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The Pacific Rim Railway Company has withdrawn its notice of intent to buy the Keokuk-Hamilton railroad bridge that is used by the Keokuk Junction Railway, the Daily Gate City reports. The notice was filed with the Surface Transportation Board. However, Keokuk Mayor Tom Marion says Craig Burroughs of Pacific Rim Railway Company still is interested in buying the bridge.

"Burroughs told me last week that they were going to withdraw their request. This does not mean that they don't still want to purchase the bridge," Marion said in an e-mail to the Daily Gate City. "I think they realize that they were moving too fast based on the (city) council."

Burroughs had offered to buy the bridge for $500,000, payable in the form of a 10-year note with an interest rate of four percent a year. Interest would be paid quarterly at the rate of one percent of the outstanding principal amount with interest payments due on the three-month post-closing date and continuing every three months thereafter until maturity.

Keokuk City Council members have balked at Burroughs' proposal to have the bridge fund, which currently has a balance of about $3.3 million, placed in a trust. Council members also have pointed out when Burroughs appeared before the council on March 4 he made it sound like an agreement in principal had been reached between him and the city on the bridge's purchase.

When contacted by phone this morning, Burroughs expressed hope that a deal could be worked out with the city.

"As soon as they (the city) agree to the terms, it (the notice of intent to buy the bridge) will be re-filed," he said.

Burroughs said the bridge fund had a balance of about $3.6 million at the start of the year.