Posts Tagged ‘Finger Lakes Railway’

CN, CSX Still Unable to Finish Line Sale

December 2, 2020

The acquisition by Canadian National of a CSX secondary line between Syracuse, New York, and Montreal continues to lag.

The two railroads this week said they could not meet a Nov. 30 deadline to finish the deal and asked for a deadline extension to Feb. 28, 2021. Either party could back out of the deal before that date.

The line in question is known as the Massena Line and the STB had last April approved CN’s acquisition of it through its Bessemer & Lake Erie subsidiary.

However, a sticking point in completing the deal has been an STB directive that CSX and CN remove a sale provision that prohibits CN from ever negotiating direct interchange with the Finger Lakes Railway and the New York, Susquehanna & Western in the Syracuse area.

In their latest filing with the STB, CN and CSX said they remain unable to come to revised terms of the sale and have asked the Board to reconsider its directive.

The STB has twice extended the deadline for CN and CSX to submit a revised purchase and sale agreement.

In the filing this week the two railroads asked the STB to expedite its response to their request.

The sale involves  278.1 miles between Beauharnois, Quebec, and Woodard, New York,

including 41.8 miles of trackage in Quebec and branch lines and spurs on both sides of the border.

CSX Branch Line Sale May Fall Through

May 30, 2020

The sale of a CSX branch line in Upstate New York is in danger of falling through.

Canadian National wants to acquire 278 miles of the Massena Line in New York and Quebec.

Its Bessemer & Lake Erie subsidiary would operate the U.S. portions of the line.

The sale has received U.S. Surface Transportation Board approval but twice the parties involved have failed to meet a deadline to complete the deal.

The sticking point is an STB mandate that CN and CSX remove from the sale agreement a clause that prohibits CN from even negotiating with the Finger Lake Railway and the New York, Susquehanna for a direct interchange in Syracuse agreement.

“Under present circumstances, it regrettably appears that the parties will be unable to proceed with the transaction” unless the board reconsiders the interchange provision, CN and CSX wrote in a joint letter to the STB.

The letter said the carriers will ask the STB to reconsider it order to remove the no direct interchange negotiation clause.

The STB in April had rejected a request by Finger Lakes that it be allowed to interchange cars with CN in Syracuse.

B&LE to Operate CSX Line in New York

April 8, 2020

The Bessemer & Lake Erie will be expanding soon, but it won’t be in either Ohio or Pennsylvania.

Instead the B&LE will acquire on behalf of parent Canadian National a CSX line in New York State that reaches into Canada.

The U.S. Surface Transportation Board on Monday approved B&LE’s acquisition of the Massena rail lines, a 236-mile system that stretches from Woodard, New York, to Valleyfield, Quebec.

CN and CSX will use the route to interchange traffic, which makes up 45 percent of the freight moved on the line.

In a filing with the STB, CN said acquiring the line will ensure that traffic using the lines continues to move directly between the two railroads rather than through an additional, unaffiliated railroad.

The transaction will become effective on May 21.

The STB some conditions sought by competing rail lines including an attempt by the Finger Lakes Railway to gain direct interchange with CN in Syracuse, New York.

However, the STB did direct CSX and CN to remove a clause in the sale agreement that would have prohibited from ever negotiating interchange in Syracuse with Finger Lakes and the New York, Susquehanna & Western.

Currently, CN and CSX interchange traffic in Huntingdon, Quebec, but it will now be moved to DeWitt Yard in Syracuse and Belle Isle Yard near Solvay, New York.

CN plans to operate a pair of trains carrying manifest freight and intermodal traffic between Montreal and Syracuse.

The intermodal traffic originates in Montreal and Toronto and is bound for ports in Philadelphia, New York and New Jersey.