Thursday, April 13, 2017

UP invests $135 million in Arkansas infrastructure, consolidates Wichita Service Unit

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Union Pacific (UP) is boosting safety and efficiency with an approximately $135 million infrastructure investment in Arkansas this year. The company is also consolidating its Wichita Service Unit management with its Kansas City, Fort Worth and North Little Rock service units.

UP's investment plan funds a range of initiatives in Arkansas: $119 million to maintain track and $7 million to maintain bridges in the state. Key projects planned this year include a $20-million investment in the rail line between Rison and Camden to replace 47 miles of rail and a $14-million investment in the rail line between Little Rock and Benton to replace 61,005 crossties and install 16,838 tons of ballast.

UP says this year's planned $135 million capital expenditure in Arkansas is part of its ongoing investment strategy. From 2012 to 2016, UP invested more than $588 million in Arkansas's transportation infrastructure. The company says it plans to spend $3.1 billion across its network this year. UP has invested $51 billion since 2000, "contributing to a 40-percent decrease in derailments during the same time frame." The Class 1 plans to invest $77.1 million in its Oregon infrastructure and $180 million in its California infrastructure this year.

In other UP news, the railroad says effective May 1, the Wichita Service Unit consolidation will result in three management positions being reassigned to other locations. The consolidation is a result of UP's efforts "to meet customer demands amid marketplace shifts," said the company. UP assures that transportation, engineering, mechanical, maintenance and other operations necessary to continue running a safe and efficient railroad will remain in place.