• Iowa Interstate RR orders ES44ACs

  • For discussion of the Iowa Interstate. The Iowa Interstate Railroad (reporting mark IAIS) is a Class II railroad operating in the central United States. The railroad is owned by Railroad Development Corporation of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Website: iaisrr.com
For discussion of the Iowa Interstate. The Iowa Interstate Railroad (reporting mark IAIS) is a Class II railroad operating in the central United States. The railroad is owned by Railroad Development Corporation of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Website: iaisrr.com
  by MEC407
Yes, you read the subject line correctly: small regional railroad Iowa Interstate (IAIS) is apparently going to be receiving a batch (10 or 12 units) of ES44ACs from GE.

While I don't yet have "rock solid" confirmation on this (e.g. a press release from GE or IAIS), the information comes from Sean Graham-White, author of the book "GE Evolution Locomotives" and owner/moderator of the LocoNotes discussion group. Mr. Graham-White has nearly as much disdain for rumors as I do, so I feel comfortable in posting this information here. When more details emerge, I will post those, too.

  by GN 599
Sounds fine to me, I am sick of seeing BNSF and UP ES's. Variety is the spice of life. Now who is going to post the first thread boo hooing about older motors they are going to retire?

  by Steve F45
how much trackage do they cover? and how much power do they currently run?


  by MEC407
Here is what their roster currently looks like:


As you can see, ES44ACs will be quite a departure from what they currently own.

  by Allen Hazen
IAIS, when it was new, had a number of Alcos (all since sold: the link at the bottom of your link, MEC407, has a historical roster of IAIS). As I recall, when they got their first Alcos, an IAIS executive was quoted as saying he'd done it after discovering that a number of his shop personnel were ex-CRIP and had maintained CRIP's U-boats and "if they could maintain those [unfavorable expletives] they could certainly take care of good Alcos."

Sentiment painful to a GE fan, of course. But GE has come a long way: an ES44 is a much better locomotive than a U33B!

  by uhaul
I will keep checking up as this story develops. I think they will look good in IAIS paint and I hope they preform well.

  by sallenparks
It's a done deal according to Railfan&Railroad & Railpace 12 total expeceted by October 1,2008.Go to there Web pages and see.

  by MEC407
It's official:
Iowa Interstate Railroad, based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, plans to purchase 12 new locomotives to accommodate the production of five new ethanol plants that will begin shipping on their regional system next summer.
Read more at:

http://ethanolproducer.com/article.jsp? ... gory_id=56

  by Burner
Its even more official now...

I cant stand it when people put spaces in web addresses... it never formats right when you try and repost it. Copy and paste the address in this code block:
Code: Select all

But anyway here it is:
For Immediate Release
April 22, 2008

Iowa Interstate Announces GE Locomotive Purchase

CEDAR RAPIDS ,IOWA – Dennis H. Miller, President and CEO of the Iowa Interstate Railroad, Ltd. (IAIS), announced the purchase of 12 new General Electric Evolution Series locomotives. The locomotives are valued in excess of $2.2 million each, including tooling and warranties.

“This transaction will position IAIS to efficiently handle new levels of business that will materialize in 2009. The new GE ES44AC locomotives are 18 % more fuel efficient than other alternatives, including rebuilt locomotives, that we considered. One of the new 4,400 Horsepower units will pull a train equivalent to what 2 or 3 of our current units can handle, further reducing our fuel consumption and maintenance costs. These new units are also environmentally friendly and comply with all of the latest EPA requirements. The locomotives will be manufactured at GE’s Erie, Pennsylvania plant and we expect them to be delivered by October 1 of this year. Iowa Interstate Railroad has seen traffic growth levels exceeding 50% over the past 5 years and with 5 new ethanol plants starting up over the next year, we expect another 25-30% growth in traffic,” Miller stated.

Founded in 1984, IAIS is a regional carrier operating over 500 miles between Omaha, Nebraska, and Chicago, Illinois, with connections to all major Class 1 carriers. For more information about IAIS, please visit www.IAISRR.com
  by MEC407
  by tomjohn
Nice catch!

1- Isn't IAS - IOWA INTERSTATE RR considered either a regional or shortline by some standards ?
2- Isn't the ES44 overkill for them THE IOWA INTERSTATE RR ?

  by Allen Hazen
(1) NICE paint scheme
(2) Small orders for diesel locomotives are often treated as add-ons, with the units uilt to the same standard (same modifications) as those on a larger order for a bigger railroad. Any idea if these are, under the paint, like BNSF units? Like UP units?
  by Allen Hazen
Silly, silly me! The IAIS ES44AC has steerable trucks! Neither BNSF nor UP specifies this option on their units. CSX does, but I'd be surprised if IAIS has ordered CSX-style "superheavies." I think KCS has ordered AC44 or ES44AC with steerable trucks: maybe IAIS has asked for copies of the KCS units? Or maybe the modular design of modern locomotives has gotten to the point where a small railroad can order its own customized modification without paying a major penalty pricewise?