Loading

14°F

14°F

13°F

15°F

15°F

17°F

13°F

15°F

15°F

13°F

17°F
NEWS STORIES

WisDOT leaders hopeful for increase in Northwoods railSubmitted: 04/24/2014

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com


ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - Railroads give businesses a chance to move loads of material for a low cost. Loggers could use rail as an alternative to trucking material, but many businesses don't get that opportunity in the Northwoods anymore.

Canadian National bought rail in the Northwoods about a decade ago. They have cut back service drastically since then.

Some counties haven't seen train travel in years, which hurts business. Now, those businesses want to reestablish rail service.

In response, a group of counties in Northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan formed the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission.

Their goal is to bring back efficient rail to their counties. The group has been working with Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) officials, like Dennis Leong, since forming the group in 2012.

Leong believes there is an opportunity to bring back rail to the region based off of the feedback from businesses and local governments.

"We did a survey of businesses in the Northwoods area and found potentially quite a few business interests in rail," Leong said. "They're meeting with CN (Canadian National) and having discussions, so hopefully maybe certain sections can be brought back to service."

Leong wants to help expand rail in the north, but private companies might only re-establish rail if they think they can make money on it.

"Part of the challenge is that you have to have the volume in which the railroads want to make sure they have an operating system to put back in service," Leong said.

Leaders at the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission are trying to win a multimillion dollar federal grant, TIGER, from the U.S. Department of Transportation to get more log cars for rail in the Northwoods. They'll host their monthly meeting Friday at 10 a.m. at the Oneida County Courthouse.

Wisconsin has 13 freight railroads using a system of more than 33 hundred mile of rail, according to WisDOT.



Related Weblinks:
Northwoods Rail Transit Commission

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

WAUSAU - The exhibition, called Medieval to Metal: The Art and Evolution of the Guitar opened Saturday.

It's a touring exhibition from the National Guitar Museum.

The executive director of that museum led a gallery walk Saturday.

+ Read More

ST. GERMAIN - One person got hurt in a snowmobile crash this morning.

The crash happened near highway 70 in St. Germain.

Officers say a 19-year-old Beaver Dam woman went off the trail and hit a tree.

The woman had to be airlifted to Wausau hospital.

The Vilas County Sheriff's Office is still investigating.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - The ski clinic was held this morning. It only cost $10.

The class was sponsored by Mel's Trading Post and the School District of Rhinelander Community Education Program

+ Read More

Play Video

EAGLE RIVER - Some local students could win state and national awards by taking a math exam.

Students at Northland Pines High School will take the Trig-Star Exam in March.

The exam tests students on trigonometry they've learned in high school.

Students need to be able to apply that knowledge to real life situations as if they're a land surveyor.

"Land surveying in itself is a basis for a lot of things in our country," says Vilas County Land Information/Mapping Department GIS Technician Tony Jones. "It's a chance to work outside, it's a chance to work with your hands, it's also a professional level position. You get to work with mathematics, and architecture, and history, and law."

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Anglers from across the country came to Rhinelander Friday to compete at the USA Ice Team open trials. Yes, ice fishing has a national team.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - A 35-year-old Rhinelander man will spend four years in prison for burglarizing a number of businesses in Rhinelander in March 2014.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Electricity costs a lot of money, especially when you're not used to paying for it.

The Rhinelander Area Food Pantry moved into a new location in October. In the old building, the pantry didn't have to pay for utilities. Now they do.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here