The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, December 02, 2015 8:43 am

Chicago, Fort Wayne, Eastern railroad announces track-improvement project

The following statement was issued Friday by Genesee & Wyoming Railroad Services, Inc.:

FT. WAYNE, Ind. – The Chicago, Ft. Wayne & Eastern Railroad (CFE) today announced a track improvement project enabling 40-mph train speeds across the entire 315-mile rail line from Tolleston, Ind., to Crestline, Ohio.  Work includes leveling and aligning nearly 50 track-miles, replacing segments of rail and installing more than 10,000 new railroad ties.  Expected to be completed this month, the project will help alleviate rail freight congestion in the metro-Chicago area by creating an alternate route for trains going to and from the Chicago rail gateway.
CFE anticipates up to six additional eastbound freight trains per day over its line upon completion of the project.  The additional trains, expected to carry energy products such as crude oil, bulk commodities such as grain, and other general merchandise, will be operated by Norfolk Southern Railway, which has rights to operate over the CFE and dispatches all trains on the line.
“Motorists and pedestrians should take note that trains will be running more frequently and also at higher speeds on certain segments that were not 40 mph before,” says Chuck McBride, CFE president.  “Always obey signs and warning devices at railroad crossings, and cross only at designated crossings.”
There are more than 400 public and private railroad crossings on the CFE, 213 of which already had 40-mph train speeds.  The 221 crossings now being increased to 40-mph train speeds are in Allen County in Indiana and in Crawford, Wyandot, Hardin, Allen and Van Wert counties in Ohio.
“This private-sector investment enhances an important piece of transportation infrastructure in Indiana and Ohio,” McBride says.  “By increasing the railroad’s capacity to transport freight, the improvement project benefits existing customers and also makes the CFE corridor more attractive for potential new customers and economic development opportunities along the line.
Through these investments, we look forward to enhancing this route to help attract new industries that need superior access to the national rail freight network.  We believe this fits well with the current resurgence of industries locating new facilities in Indiana and Ohio.”
CFE was acquired in 2012 by Genesee & Wyoming, North America’s largest owner of short line and regional freight railroads and a safety leader in the industry.

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