Written by Stuart Chirls, Senior Editor

Record rail freight for NE PA authority

Written by Stuart Chirls, Senior Editor

Railway Age

The Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2018. D-L Alco C425 2423 (ex-PRR 2423) is shown at Scranton following an anniversary excursion to the Delaware Water Gap in May. Railway Age photo by Stuart Chirls

Record carloads and economic growth are going hand-in-hand in Lackawanna and Monroe Counties in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

For the first six months of 2018 Pennsylvania Northeast Regional Railroad Authority’s (PNRRA) rail operator, the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad Co., Inc. (DLRR), reported 4839 carloads on the regional rail system between Carbondale, Scranton, the Pocono Mountains and the Delaware Water Gap, which is up 13% from the same period a year ago.

“[2017] was an all-time record year for the regional rail system which handled 8572 cars,” said Larry Malski, President of the PNRRA. A total 1068 carloads were handled by the DL for the month of June 2018 which is a monthly record since the Authority was formed in 1982 to acquire and save the regional rail lines which were being abandoned and liquidated by the private rail carriers in the region.

Delaware-Lackawanna is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and has operated two excursions behind its trademark Alco motive power – the largest such builder roster which continue to run in daily revenue operations. The D-L interchanges with Class I partner Norfolk Southern in Scranton.

“The rail renaissance continues in Lackawanna and Monroe Counties,” said Malski, “and we are now starting the process of relaying some of the double track and yard tracks that were ripped up in the 1980s, with the DLRR’s successful award of a $980,000 PennDOT Bureau of Rail Freight grant to relay two of the yard tracks in Green Ridge Yard that were liquidated almost 40 years ago.”

The tracks will allow the DLRR to add expanded capacity needed to handle the increasing carloads moving over the regional rail system. This includes service to two new industries, Scranton Transload at 701 Wyoming Avenue in Scranton and Northwoods Paper in Stroud Township.

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