2021 Nevada State Rail Plan Sets New Direction

2021 Nevada State Rail Plan Sets New Direction

The newly published 2021 Nevada State Rail Plan is unlike any other and holds the promise of a more efficient freight rail industry for the state and the nation.   

Now in the public comment period, the plan consummates a year-long immersion by Strategic Rail Finance (SRF) and its affiliated non-profit OnTrackNorthAmerica (OTNA) into the constraints and dynamics of Nevada’s freight system.

 The Nevada plan is a future-facing and detailed blueprint for leveraging rail’s inherent benefits for businesses, communities, and the environment.  To create the plan, SRF and Nevada DOT:
 

  • Facilitated in-depth dialogue between hundreds of shippers, stakeholders and developers to catalog current and planned transportation projects and infrastructure requirements 
  • Conducted a deep dive into data on truck movements in and through the state to pinpoint new opportunities for rail growth and improved multi-modal integration, a rail plan first 
  • Mapped the supply chain for entire industries to reveal synergies for optimized operations and infrastructure 
  • Laid the groundwork for significant private sector capital to offset the shortfall and challenges of public sector funding for freight transportation initiatives

    The approach taken to the Nevada plan is beeing applied to other regions and states .  Contact SRF to explore implications for your region. 

Lifecycle BCA helps POLB Win $8M Grant

Lifecycle BCA helps POLB Win $8M Grant

Grant applications for rail projects often require a Benefit Cost Analysis (BCA) to measure the impacts of the proposed development.  For decades there have been few if any changes in the factors that BCAs consider when comparing moving freight by rail instead of truck.  In 2020 Port of Long Beach (POLB), seeking to strengthen an application to the state of California for funding of on-dock rail infrastructure, contracted with industry advisor Strategic Rail Finance to conduct its Lifecycle BCA.

Lifecycle BCA was developed by SRF’s non-profit affiliate OnTrackNorthAmerica (OTNA) to assess typically missing impacts of truck transportation and other operational realities. By discerning and addressing factors across the entire life of a rail project that carry significant costs and benefits to businesses, the environment and community, Lifecycle BCA provides project stakeholders and funders with a more holistic view of a project’s merit.

POLB’s ambitious pier infrastructure project will enable containers to be loaded onto dockside trains rather than trucked 20 miles to an inland rail terminal. A previous conventional BCA for this project only compared a planned 20-mile one-way rail move of each container to the current 20-mile truck dray. This approach neglects many aspects of truck transportation such as return trips to the dock for loading and the impact of truck crashes on congestion and commuter hours. For instance, a container train requires only two operating personnel—versus the approximately 100 truck drivers required for multiple truck, chassis, and container repositioning between the dock and the inland terminal.

Here are the new operational and lifecycle elements that were factored into SRF’s enhanced comparison:

  • Pick-up of chassis before arriving at dock
  • Truck idling time while waiting for each container to be loaded at dock
  • Unloading and loading of containers at interim storage facilities before delivery to inland rail terminal (avg. 2.8 moves for each container)
  • Return to dock as an empty truck move
  • Truck and personnel logistics at beginning and end of each day’s shift
  • Congestion impact from truck crashes

OTNA and SRF continue to identify and measure new BCA factors to drive better understanding by the industry of the real impacts of proposed rail, truck and industrial development.

SRF Launches Affiliate to Focus on Rail Shippers

SRF Launches Affiliate to Focus on Rail Shippers

Strategic Rail Finance, veteran advisory firm to the North American freight rail industry, is now offering an expanded  suite of financial and operational solutions for manufacturers and industrial land developers through a new affiliate company, Strategic Rail Industrial, LLC. (SRI).

“Over the years Strategic Rail has advised rail shippers in finance, operations, public-sector engagement, and site selection. We are further leveraging our core competency at solving transportation problems and designing supply chains.  SRI can now finance and operate the on-site rail solutions for our partners in freight-intensive industries,” said Taylor Rich, SRI president.

Joining Taylor at launch are a team of industry consultants which has successfully steered hundreds of private- and public-sector transportation projects.  In addition to  supply chain optimization and data-enabled site selection, SRI provides an integrated Purchase/Improve/Leaseback program for active rail shippers and a  Design/Build/Operate platform for greenfield developments.

Wilmington, NC selects SRF for Rail Realignment Project

Wilmington, NC selects SRF for Rail Realignment Project

September 2020 — SRF was awarded a contract for 2020-21 by the City of Wilmington, NC to study the feasibility of its long-planned rail realignment project to build infrastructure and shift freight service across the Cape Fear River.    SRF will investigate a range of viable options for funding, ownership, operation and maintenance. 

The Rail Realignment Project will replace and improve the existing freight rail route between Navassa (Davis) Yard and the Port of Wilmington by creating a new, shorter route that no longer runs through some of Wilmington’s busiest streets and most densely populated areas. The project will improve freight rail operations, public mobility, public safety, economic development and quality of life in the region.

SRF leads $877M Port of Long Beach Rail Expansion

SRF leads $877M Port of Long Beach Rail Expansion

The  Port of Long Beach, the second-busiest container seaport in the United States, handles trade valued at $200 billion annually and supports 2.6 million jobs nationwide.   The port plans to transform its Pier B rail infrastructure, the backbone of the Port’s intermodal transportation.  Strategic Rail Finance  serves as  advisor to develop the strategic and operations plans for Pier B, and structure the project financing.

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