• NS "Crescent Corridor" announced

  • Discussion relating to the NS operations. Official web site can be found here: NSCORP.COM.
Discussion relating to the NS operations. Official web site can be found here: NSCORP.COM.
  by NS212
 
I've read several articles and viewed a powerpoint presentation today on NS's website announcing the new I-81 Crescent Corridor project. Basically, its aim is to take truck traffic off of I-81 and other interstates in the eastern U.S. from Louisiana to NJ. Not much was said about improvements but they would amount to around $2 billion and NS is hoping for a good bit of it to come from the public. VA has already put in $40 million to start and TN will probably follow. If there is enough investment by next year, then the projects will start, with the 1st of improvements being completed in '09 and being fully completed in 2013. When all is finished, expect 28 new north-south trains to add onto the current flow of North-South traffic between the South and the Northeast. Here is the powerpoint presentation from NS's website if anyone is interested.

http://www.nscorp.com/nscorphtml/speech ... 060607.pdf

  by RichM
 
Good information.

For all the concern about revitalizing the Southern Tier in New York, it's clear that NS considers their future in Southwest-Northeast and West-Mid Atlantic movements. And that's where the capital money will flow.

I can't say they're wrong.

I'm waiting to see increased double-tracking and extended sidings between Knoxville and Roanoke!

  by SecaucusJunction
 
Why would they need to expand capacity on a line that has so much extra track?

  by RichM
 
Huh?

  by SecaucusJunction
 
I was speaking about the Southern Tier

  by RichM
 
Oh, sorry... my fault... I was just mentioning that there's always plenty of discussion on various forums here about the Southern Tier, that's it's not fully utilized, etc..., but this presentation shows that NS is planning its capital investment programs for expected demand growth in areas away from its northern east-west corridors.

If you review the presentation, you'll see there's no mention of the lines from the Chicago area east.

  by SecaucusJunction
 
Well, the east/west corridor is functional right now. I doubt they wouldnt focus on their corridor with the highest traffic. The North/South traffic is basically non-existant compared to trucking lanes. NS wants to up the percentage in this area since it is so much lower than the east/west percentage.

  by RichM
 
And your information comes from?

  by NS212
 
He's right about north-south traffic being much lower than east-west. NS wants to create intermodal business in more areas other than its "golden triangle" between Chicago-Atlanta-Harrisburg and creating the "Crescent Corridor" would do just that.

  by RichM
 
Two points... while ton miles may be higher east west across the former Nickel Plate and Conrail lines, I'm not sure revenues and profitabilty are significantly higher.

Further, this has been a winter and spring of significant bottlenecks and delays along this route. If it were and area of significant growth, it would receive its share of capital. Beyond Heartland, which is really about Norfolk, I don't see a significant capital flow there.

I believe that today, Norfolk Southern sees the future in southern routings of east-west traffic, whether through Memphis, Vicksburg or New Orleans. That's where the capacity increases and the capital money are going, with the northern routes seeing only scheduled maintenance and repair.

I'm not sure if that's because Chicago is at saturation, Los Angeles will continue to expand at the expense of Oakland and Tacoma, the Mexican ports and manufacturing will grow, or all this rolled together. It's not then strictly north-south vs. east-west. It's the corridors that will be utilized.

But NS is planning a significant bet on the future.