• News

Frankfort, Ill., on track with plans to soften railroad noise

Frankfort, Ill., is
moving full speed ahead before the freight trains really get rolling along the
Canadian National Railway tracks in its community, the Southtown Star reports. Village
officials have been working with engineers and residents to soften the blow of
what is expected to be 28 daily freight trains.

Trustees recently
approved a quiet zone feasibility study detailing safety improvements at every
crossing from Harlem Avenue to 116th Avenue. It now goes to the Federal
Railroad Administration and the Illinois Commerce Commission for approval. Village
administrator Jerry Ducay said if all goes well with that approval process,
work could begin in the spring and be completed by this time next year.

Once all work is
completed, train engineers would not be required to sound the horn at each
intersection unless there is a danger present. CN is paying for all

Ducay said he has seen no
increase in rail traffic and figures CN has been operating four to six trains a

To date, the village also
has issued $400,000 out of a $2.7-million pot provided by the rail company to
landscape homes near the tracks to further reduce the noise level. Homeowners
are allowed to pick their own landscaping contractor, but must submit a plan
for approval and a building permit from the village.

To distribute the funds
among 300 homeowners, the village developed a four-tier system, with payments
ranging from $1,000 to $12,000.

"Our goal is to
spend $500,000 this season and gear up again in the spring," Ducay said.
"Most people will have all winter to prepare."

Even though the village
has five years to spend the money, Ducay said officials hope to use it all
within two years. Sound mitigation funds must be spent on landscaping walls,
fences, berms, trees, evergreens, shrubs, perennials and mulch or stone. While
some homeowners wanted a sound wall, it was not financially feasible, Ducay

Funding levels for
Frankfort homeowners impacted by the Canadian National Railway:

Tier 1: $10,000 to
$12,000 for properties adjacent to the railroad tracks.

Tier 2: $6,000 to $8,000
for properties separated by ComEd lines.

Tier 3: $4,000 to $5,000
for properties separated by another parcel.

Tier 4: $1,000 for
properties separated by a street.

  • News

AAR awards 2009 Professional Environmental Excellence award

The Association of American
Railroads awarded the 2009 Environmental Excellence Award to CSX Transportation
employee Paul Kurzanski. A 30-year veteran of the railroad industry, Kurzanski
currently serves as manager of environmental remediation with CSXT in
Jacksonville, Fla. The award was presented at the annual Railroad Environmental
Conference at University of Illinois, Urbana.

  • News

UP, CSXT launch RailChem Connect between Texas and Southeast

Union Pacific and
CSX Transportation launched RailChem Connect, a coordinated rail service for
expedited transport of chemicals between the Texas Gulf Coast region and the
Southeast. The new RailChem Connect service is the result of increased
coordination and re-designed interline service by the two railroads for their
chemicals market customers. The service allows shipments to bypass smaller rail
yards for expedited transit between major hubs. These changes, along with
increased operations coordination between the railroads, increase reliability
of east- and west-bound service between Union Pacific-served chemical markets
such as Houston, southern Texas and Louisiana, and CSXT-served consumption markets
in the southeastern states. RailChem Connect offers more consistent transit
times, faster equipment turns and a shorter route than previously available for
chemical shipments in this corridor.

  • News

Metro Gold Line Eastside Extension opening set for Nov. 15

Following five years of
construction and coming in on budget with a flawless four-million-plus-hour
construction safety record, the Edward R. Roybal Metro Gold Line Eastside
Extension from Union Station downtown to East Los Angeles will open to the
public on Sunday, Nov. 15.

  • News

Agreement reached on Philadelphia waterfront transit expansion plan

Standing with U.S.
Senator Arlen Specter, Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, Philadelphia Mayor
Michael Nutter, Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities Rina Cutler,
SEPTA General Manager Joe Casey, DRPA Board Chair John H. Estey, Board Vice
Chair Jeff Nash and others, DRPA CEO and PATCO President, John J. Matheussen,
announced an agreement that will result in Light Rail Service along Market
Street between City Hall and the Delaware River Waterfront initially serving
Pier 70 to the South and SEPTA’s Route 15 Trolley at Girard Avenue to the

  • News

Weber named Nordco engineering vice president

Steve Weber has been
named Vice President of Engineering for Nordco, Inc., where he will focus on the
development of new products. Weber’s extensive experience includes both
development of new product lines and maintenance of existing products. His most
recent position prior to joining Nordco was in the outdoor power equipment


  • News

Rail Co-operation Agreement advances Schefferville Project

Labrador Iron Mines
Holdings Limited has signed a Rail Co-operation Agreement with New Millennium
Capital Corp. regarding the reconstruction of the "Timmins Extension"
rail spur line that will run from the TSH Railroad main rail line near
Schefferville, Quebec, approximately 2.5 miles to LIM’s planned processing
center at Silver Yards and on a further approximately 13 miles to NML’s planned
processing center at the Timmins mining area.

  • News

DOT Safety Council to take safety commitment to next level

On Oct. 26, Secretary Ray
LaHood convened the first meeting of a newly created U.S. Department of
Transportation Safety Council formed to tackle critical transportation safety
issues facing the department’s 10 operating administrations.

  • News

Council members concerned about NS construction

Front Royal, Va.,
Councilman N. Shae Parker verbally blasted representatives of Norfolk Southern over
the firm’s proposal that will involve the use of explosives for a construction
project, according to local newspapers. The railroad is offering to pay Front Royal $160,000 in exchange for
vacation of a portion of Depot Avenue and the acquisition of a temporary
construction easement on a 100-foot wide strip of town property.