The Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad company has announced plans to spend upwards of $80 million on new and existing track infrastructure in New Mexico for the duration of 2019.
Those New Mexico plans will include the time-consuming surfacing of some 850 miles of track, along with the replacement of 20 miles of rail, and a quadruple track expansion at Belen.
The upgrading project will also see the installation of up to 200,000 new railroad ties.
As planned, the upgrade will particularly focus on the Fort Worth-based company’s Southern Transcon line, which comprises more than 2,000 miles between Chicago and Southern California, slicing through both New Mexico and Arizona.
That route is used as the company’s primary intermodal network.
With more than 32,000 miles of track in 28 states, BNSF is the largest freight railroad network in the U.S.
Altogether, the company plans to spend more than $3.5 billion on network infrastructure improvements across the country this year. And those improvements are coming on the heels of another $3.4 billion that BNSF invested on its capital program in 2018.
Other aspects of the company’s 2019 upgrade program will see 560 miles of track surfacing in Kansas, more than twice that number in Nebraska; and 680 miles of track surfacing in Texas.
In a statement, Carl Ice, chief executive officer of BNSF, said the company was committed to working “tirelessly to provide the level of service our customers expect and to position ourselves well for future growth opportunities.”
By Garry Boulard
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