CSX Transportation (CSX) and the Louisville and Indiana Railroad (LIRC) have announced that train traffic on LIRC between Louisville, Ky., and Seymour, Ind., is set to increase within the next few weeks.
On or soon after Sept. 1, officials say CSX and LIRC train speeds will begin to escalate gradually and continue to do so over several weeks, raising the train speeds from the current limit of 25 mph to 49 mph at many locations. Track and signal improvements have been made to allow for the safe increase in train speeds in accordance with federal regulations.
The federal Surface Transportation Board (STB) approved the changes in April 2015 as part of an agreement between LIRC and CSX. The approved agreement dictates that CSX will fund $100 million in infrastructure enhancements to facilitate the increased traffic from both railroads along the LIRC line.
The Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville is expected to see improved rail access as a result of these modifications, as well as boosted capacity and efficiency along the corridor and improved connectivity for manufacturers.
The number and average length of CSX trains is also expected to rise. CSX currently operates up to four trains daily on the LIRC rail line, but there could be as many as 10 of the Class 1’s trains running per day between Louisville, Ky., and Seymour, Ind., and officials say the number of trains operating daily could rise again in the future. Train length could also reach up to 14,000 feet and with the number and length of the trains is expected to vary depending on freight volumes.
CSX and LIRC representatives are said to have held numerous meetings with community leaders to share project status updates and address concerns related to anticipated increases in freight volume and construction plans. Officials from both companies say they will continue to share such information as it becomes available.