A $500,000 upgrade of the historic rail yard in Fell Twp., which was built in 1825 to help ignite the
region’s coal boom, is a good example of the region’s new gas industry’s ability to boost overall
economic development and of the growing importance of rail freight to the region.
The project will make possible the easy delivery, by rail rather than truck alone, of many of the materials
used in the booming Marcellus Shale drilling industry. That’s the most economical and environmentally
sound way to do it.
It demonstrates the reach of the Pennsylvania Northeast Regional Railroad Authority. More than 8,000
railcars of cargo will be delivered this year over tracks operated by the authority, extraordinary growth
over the few hundred cars a year that the authority handled 20 years ago.
AS the region grapples with the economic and environmental consequences of the gas industry, the rail
yard upgrade is a good example of how to use the gas industry to boost general economic activity.