2006: Record Year for Transportation Construction Market, ARTBA Top Economist Says

December 11, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WASHINGTON – The 2006 U.S. transportation construction market was the most robust in more than 20 years with the value of work on highways, bridges, airports and transit systems up 15 percent over the last year, according to the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA). Fueled by increased federal, state and local highway investments, a $2.3 billion congressional appropriation for repair work on highways damaged by Hurricane Katrina and greater investments in freight rail, the total value of construction performed on transportation projects is expected to hit a record $106 billion in 2006, up from $92 billion in 2005,

Governor Rendell Announces $2.6 Million Investment in Rail Infrastructure Projects

December 5, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Gov. Edward G. Rendell has announced the investment of $2.6 million in 14 rail-freight projects across Pennsylvania. The projects are geared to preserve essential rail freight service in some areas, while stimulating economic development by generating new service in others, Rendell said in a news release. The investments represent the second phase of the 2006 Rail Freight Assistance Program (RFAP). “Investments in rail freight help fuel our ongoing economic recovery,” said Rendell, who this year increased the RFAP program from $8.5 million to $10.5 million. “Rail is an increasingly popular means of moving goods, not only throughout

Wabtec Completes Acquisition of Becorit GmbH, a Leading European Rail Equipment Manufacturer

December 5, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

WILMERDING, Pa. – Wabtec Corp. has completed the acquisition of Becorit GmbH, a leading manufacturer of technology-based friction products for the European railway industry, for $52.2 million in cash. Last week, Wabtec announced that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire the company from U.K.-based BBA Aviation plc. Wabtec expects the acquisition to be accretive immediately. Based in Germany, Becorit has annual sales of about $30 million. Becorit manufactures a variety of brake shoes, pads and friction linings for passenger transit cars, freight cars and locomotives, including high-speed applications. The company also makes friction products for industrial markets such

Idlewild Park and Ligonier Valley Rail Road Association Save Historic Landmark

October 12, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

LIGONIER, Pa. – Idlewild Park and the Ligonier Valley Rail Road Association are working together to preserve the historic Darlington Station. “We plan to restore the building to its 1930s grandeur and re-open it as a museum and resource center focused on the Ligonier Valley Rail Road and related industry,” said Bill McCullough, President and co-founder of the LVRRA. Idlewild Park and Soak Zone, and Kennywood Entertainment, have agreed to sub-divide and grant the property to the LVRRA and the lead grant awarded by the Richard King Mellon Foundation will allow the Association to restore the exterior of the building

The All New Railfanning.org

October 5, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 1

Welcome to the all-new Railfanning.org News Wire. We’re making some changes here and appreciate your patience as we transition the Web page from the harpblaster.net server to the separate Railfanning.org site. Please note any addresses that begin with railfanning.harpblaster.net will be changed to railfanning.org if they have not already. So, be sure to change your bookmarks. Be sure to check back over the next month. We have a lot of changes we plan on introducing. In the meantime, Happy Railfanning. – Todd DeFeo, Editor Railfanning.org

Alaska Railroad to Issue Tax-Exempt Bonds

August 7, 2006 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The Alaska Railroad Corp. (ARRC) will issue tax-exempt bonds in this month to finance rail transportation projects. During the last legislative session, the Alaska Legislature voted unanimously to allow ARRC to issue up to $165 million in tax-exempt bonds backed by Federal Transit Administration (FTA) formula funds that the Corporation receives annually. ARRC is moving forward with its first issuance of approximately $76 million in tax-exempt bonds in 2006 with the remaining debt to be issued in future years. “This is a historic moment for the Alaska Railroad and Alaskans,” said Governor Bill Sheffield, Chairman ARRC Board

Turning Back the Clock in Detroit

DETROIT — Starting Aug. 5, Tigers fans will have the opportunity to turn back the clock and travel to the game the nostalgic way. Olympia Development, the Detroit Tigers, Amtrak and the Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) are teaming up to bring fans to Detroit aboard an existing metropolitan railway beginning in August. The Foxtown Tigers Train will board passengers at three suburban locations, beginning in Oakland County, and travel along existing rail lines that link these cities to Detroit. Passengers will then transfer to a special DDOT Tigers Trolley and conclude their trip at Comerica Park to see the

BLET: Delegates Warned of Radioactive Rail Shipments

LAS VEGAS – Delegates attending the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen’s (BLET) First Quadrennial Convention were warned of the dangers of transporting spent nuclear waste and discussed ways of ensuring their safety as well as the safety of the general public. Scott Palmer, the BLET’s Oregon State Legislative Board Chairman, told delegates that rail workers do not receive proper training to handle spent nuclear fuel and do not receive the same protections that are afforded other nuclear industry workers. In addition, there are no plans to record, monitor or track rail worker exposure levels, he said. "It’s our goal

A brush with history

June 16, 2006 Todd DeFeo 0

For decades, an aging relic has stood as the icon of this city’s railroad past. Now, thanks to donations from some area businesses, the 76-year-old Gainesville Midland steam engine No. 208 has a new coat of paint.

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