CPR deal in New York to divert "tons of freight" from truck to rail

by Canadian Shipper

Canadian Pacific Railroad and New York & Atlantic Railway have inked a deal with the New York City Economic Development Corp. (EDC) to operate and manage the 65th Street Rail Yard and transfer bridges in Brooklyn.

The New York & Atlantic Railway will act as subcontractor.

The move, according to the Michael Carey, president of the EDC, is aimed at diverting "tons of freight from truck to rail and significantly reducing air pollution." The EDC also said the move will solidify competitive rail access in the city.

In 1999, as a result of the Surface Transportation Board’s (STB) consideration of the Conrail acquisition by CSX and Norfolk Southern, and at the urging of the City and State for competitive rail access east of the Hudson, the STB called for an East-of-Hudson operating agreement between CSX and CPR.

"The agreement between CSX and Canadian Pacific has already increased rail freight service to the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens," said Carey. "With Canadian Pacific operating the 65th Street Rail Yard, we will build on the success of the City and State’s demands for competitive rail access in New York City."

Jacques Cote, President and CEO of CPR’s eastern network, said, gaining access to the 65th Street Rail Yard is a critical element in the railroad’s strategy to serve the east-of-Hudson area.

"We anticipate beginning to unload bulk flour in April, followed by aggregates later this spring. In addition, we are hopeful that we can ship international containers to and from Canada from container terminals in Brooklyn, Staten Island and New Jersey this year," he said.

The agreement with CPR will also break new ground for the railcar float system in New York Harbor by inaugurating the two rail transfer bridges at the Rail Yard. The bridges will provide for the transfer of railcars to and from carfloats. In its Cross Harbor Freight Movement Study, EDC identified an expanded cross harbor float system as a fundamental step to improving the movement of goods in the New York City region.

Once it is established, Canadian Pacific anticipates that it will handle approximately 18,000 carloads and container loads at the Rail Yard and generate more than $1 million in revenue for the City over three years. Its investment will include approximately $250,000 in additional capital improvements at the Brooklyn Rail Yard.

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