Is the Railroad Renaissance over, or is it moving into a new phase?

Tony Hatch (4)

Remember that over the intermediate-term, rail volumes are derived-demand; they can’t help it if auto manufacturing moves from the Rust Belt to the South and into Mexico — but they adjust. We are still in the coal decline era — that is a huge, generational change for rails. So, up next? There are PSR-related modal opportunities (plastics/ paper/steel/etc.). One has to believe we will restore sanity to trade policy, and restore the understanding that trade deficits don’t matter (and stop lecturing the United Nations about the “end of globalism”). Trade is very important to rails. But the growth captain remains increased consumer volumes in a rapidly changing technology fired landscape. I think Amazon, which just bought 250 domestic containers, and other e-commerce companies can be good for rail. I also believe that if management acts quickly and spends the required sums, the changing technologies can be beneficial to the industry. That’s an “if” but at least now they are talking the talk. So, speaking of 2.0, “Railroad Renaissance 2.0” is within their grasp. Sorry, Fred W. Frailey: The rumors of the death of the Railroad Renaissance are premature.