Swanton Yard Project Tops NS Capital Plans

Norfolk Southern said this week it expects to continue spending for infrastructure maintenance this year at the about the same level as last year even as it reduces how much it invests in capacity expansion.

NS logo 1The largest 2017 NS capital project is the construction of a staging yard in Swanton, Ohio, along the Chicago Line. NS also plans to expand yards in Fostoria, Ohio, and Whiting, Indiana.

Speaking to the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association convention, David Becker, NS chief engineer for design and construction, cited two “super projects” that will increase capacity.

Those include the Piedmont Improvement Program, which is being undertaken in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Transportation, and a project in Virginia being undertaken with that state’s Department of Rail and Public Transportation.

The $520 million Piedmont project involves laying more than 40 miles of second main track.

Other work set for 2017 includes a  $70 million project to replace the Genesee River bridge in Portageville, New York, and replacing 262.7 miles of dual rail and 187.3 of single rail.

Becker said NS will replace 2.35 million crossties and surface rails with 2.32 million tons of ballast. Both figures are approximately the same as what the railroad did in 2016.

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