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Possible Railroad & Related Developments in Rosenberg

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Interesting. Currently, Houston's Union Pacific intermodal facilities are in the 5th Ward and just to the north on the opposite side of 610. BNSF has one near Hobby Airport at Telephone Road and Brisbane.

My understanding is that the current UP facilities are particularly inefficient and have been a bottleneck in the system. If UP built a large state-of-the-art intermodal facility in Rosenberg, they may turn around and look to sell one or possibly both of the inner city facilities, putting several hundred acres of urban land on the market. ...granted it isn't exactly prime real estate, but that is just the kind of thing that if managed properly by city officials, could in concert with other big projects such as Frank Liu's Baer Street site and the KBR site, kickstart meaningful revitalization of the area.

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http://www.fortbendherald.com/articles/200...ry/topstory.txt

Rail center may generate 2,000 jobs

By Don Munsch

A national rail line today announced construction plans for a large distribution park and rail facility that will bring up to 2,000 jobs and spark significant economic development in far west Fort Bend County.

In making the announcement, an official with Kansas City Southern railroad hesitated to pinpoint an exact impact figure, but using conservative economic multipliers said

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Freight rail is only going to become more important in the future as trucking becomes less efficient.

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I'm thrilled this is being built. I wonder if this will decrease or increase capacity on the tracks or roads in the area (which I'm sure they will improve).

Woolie, I was talking to someone sometime last year and they said that if its under a 800 miles, it is more efficient to send it by truck, but over that distance, train would be preferred unless it is VERY time sensitive.

I just wonder how long it will be until residents that will build up in the area complain about the train noise.

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Woolie, I was talking to someone sometime last year and they said that if its under a 800 miles, it is more efficient to send it by truck, but over that distance, train would be preferred unless it is VERY time sensitive.

gas prices tip the balance. rail is far more fuel efficient.

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Interesting. Currently, Houston's Union Pacific intermodal facilities are in the 5th Ward and just to the north on the opposite side of 610. BNSF has one near Hobby Airport at Telephone Road and Brisbane.

My understanding is that the current UP facilities are particularly inefficient and have been a bottleneck in the system. If UP built a large state-of-the-art intermodal facility in Rosenberg, they may turn around and look to sell one or possibly both of the inner city facilities, putting several hundred acres of urban land on the market. ...granted it isn't exactly prime real estate, but that is just the kind of thing that if managed properly by city officials, could in concert with other big projects such as Frank Liu's Baer Street site and the KBR site, kickstart meaningful revitalization of the area.

Do you think these statements are still relevant to this updated news?

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I'm thrilled this is being built. I wonder if this will decrease or increase capacity on the tracks or roads in the area (which I'm sure they will improve).

Woolie, I was talking to someone sometime last year and they said that if its under a 800 miles, it is more efficient to send it by truck, but over that distance, train would be preferred unless it is VERY time sensitive.

I just wonder how long it will be until residents that will build up in the area complain about the train noise.

I've heard that 450 to 500 miles is the line in the sand for rail over truck. The tricky thing is indeed time sensitivity. Rail is much slower, and fragile cargoes do tend to get banged up a bit more than by truck.

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gas prices tip the balance. rail is far more fuel efficient.

Perhaps, but it is far less flexible. If you manufacture a kind of widget and want to get it from your factory in Houston to a distribution warehouse in Dallas, you'll have to truck your product to the nearest transloading facility, transfer the cargo onto a rail car, send it to Dallas, transfer cargo onto a truck, and then truck it to the warehouse. Considering the freight rate that UP or BNSF will charge you, in addition to the intracity shipping involved, it'd have been easier just to send the first truck directly to Dallas and then perhaps make a little money by hiring out your truck to haul someone else's cargo on the backhaul.

Do you think these statements are still relevant to this updated news?

Probably not relevant. KCS is a new entrant to the physical plant of Houston's transportation infrastructure. It's good to have a third competitor, but UP probably won't be closing any intermodal terminals on account of them.

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Perhaps, but it is far less flexible.

of course there are many variables, it's a complex system. but generally speaking, if someone has the choice between either rail or truck and isn't fundamentally tied to one or the other for logistical reasons or time sensitivity, high fuel costs make rail more favorable.

I'm amenable to heavy investment in our freight rail infrastructure... maybe even electrified... but everyone here already knows I'm afraid of the peak oil and climate change boogeymen.

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of course there are many variables, it's a complex system. but generally speaking, if someone has the choice between either rail or truck and isn't fundamentally tied to one or the other for logistical reasons or time sensitivity, high fuel costs make rail more favorable.

It depends almost entirely upon the distance to be covered, and even then, the devil is in the details. Comparing one or the other without accounting for at least that key variable is an exercise in futility.

Given how much rail congestion there has been in recent years, UP has occasionally made it so that Houston cargo bound for the west coast is first trucked to San Antonio before being loaded onto a train. How's that for screwy?

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let me clarify, "relatively more favorable than when gas prices were low," not "absolutely favorable in all scenarios"

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You guys are right, the devil is in the details. I don't know the trucking industry enough or the rail business enough to make even take a serious WAG as far how fast and what what distance is comparable to a truck. Also remember, a trucker is supposed to shut down after, I think every 12 hours for 8 hours of rest (or something like that). Rail has a comparable rules, but they just change crews and the trains keep on going, but they are dependent on traffic on the rails.

I know many factories/businesses try to factor in freight travel into their production/sales forecast so they won't have that much in inventory.

There are just too many variables for us laymen to really make a smart guess as to what is truly efficient and what isn't.

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Construction begins this summer on infrastructure at the intermodal rail center west of Rosenberg and near Kendleton, said an official with CenterPoint Properties who spoke at the May luncheon of Rosenberg-Richmond Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon Friday at Safari Texas Ranch.

Brian McKiernan, development manager with CenterPoint Properties, gave a presentation about the intermodal rail center, which is expected to bring hundreds of jobs to Rosenberg. The development includes an industrial park, and the 7.5 million square feet of industrial warehouse space would be used to receive, store and disburse by rail and truck containerized cargo across Texas, other parts of the U.S. and Mexico.

http://www.fortbendherald.com/articles/200...80600711664.txt

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Since it is tied to the development at the Intermodal Center, here's a piece I missed on Nissan's involvement there.

http://houston.bizjournals.com/houston/stories/2009/08/31/story5.html?q=Nissan%20Distribution%20Center

Two transportation companies have tapped Rosenberg for a new vehicle distribution center for Nissan Motor Co.

Kansas City, Mo.-based railroad operator Kansas City Southern and Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics have agreed to establish a finished-vehicle distribution center as the first tenant in the CenterPoint Intermodal Center-Houston Metro hub in Rosenberg. The center will act as a regional automotive distribution center for Nissan in Texas.

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Guess this explains why I noticed the rail line which parallels US-59 down the Victoria is being rebuilt? Having grown up in Victoria then moving to Houston I watched those old rails deteriorate over the last 30+ years as i drove back home on holidays and weekends....

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Since 2009, the Intermodal Center and a swath of land on the opposite side of 59 have been designated a Foreign Trade Zone.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=ahODOTUu4GYE

Didn't realize that GBI purchased the 340 acres on that other side. Then again, it being GBI... the rendering is going to be pretty far-fetched by default.

http://www.gbiinternational.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=19&Itemid=40

Also didn't realize that Whirlpool had considered building a distribution site at the Terminal. Haven't seen anything other than the HBJ article though, so who knows what happened to that...

http://www.bizjournals.com/houston/print-edition/2010/11/12/whirlpool-spins-huge-project.html?page=all

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Since I don't live in the area any more, I don't catch as much of the updates on these topics as I used to. 

 

Anyway, there are existing proposals to expand railroad freight service from the Port of Freeport to the Rosenberg area. This comes on the heels of the expansion of services at the port that aim to increase the amount of traffic and freight that can be handled. Brazoria and Fort Bend County formed a joint railroad district last summer to determine how to proceed further. Many of the proposals also deal with a potential expansion of Highway 36 from Freeport to Rosenberg for a projected increase in truck traffic.

 

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/neighborhood/fortbend/news/article/Fort-Bend-Brazoria-eye-new-freight-line-from-port-6411037.php

 

http://communityimpact.com/houston/news/2015/09/16/officials-form-district-to-mull-possible-rail-line-from-port-of-houston/

 

 

 

 

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On 3/3/2016 at 2:19 PM, ChannelTwoNews said:

Since I don't live in the area any more, I don't catch as much of the updates on these topics as I used to. 

 

Anyway, there are existing proposals to expand railroad freight service from the Port of Freeport to the Rosenberg area. This comes on the heels of the expansion of services at the port that aim to increase the amount of traffic and freight that can be handled. Brazoria and Fort Bend County formed a joint railroad district last summer to determine how to proceed further. Many of the proposals also deal with a potential expansion of Highway 36 from Freeport to Rosenberg for a projected increase in truck traffic.

 

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/neighborhood/fortbend/news/article/Fort-Bend-Brazoria-eye-new-freight-line-from-port-6411037.php

 

http://communityimpact.com/houston/news/2015/09/16/officials-form-district-to-mull-possible-rail-line-from-port-of-houston/

 

 

 

 

I hope they go through with this! A line could easily be built all the way to Damon, as grading already exists between there an Rosenberg. Then you're only a short distance from Freeport, and that' the only area you'd need new grading for.

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http://www.fbherald.com/rosenberg-moves-forward-with-railroad-quiet-zones/article_e4f8c44d-1eb8-52f4-bd81-dc24e2bb84d4.html

 

 

Quote

 

Rosenberg moves forward with railroad quiet zones

Posted: Wednesday, March 8, 2017 8:58 am

By Averil Gleason agleason@fbherald.com

After more than a year of finalizing agreements, action has been taken on an interlocal agreement for quiet zones at railroad crossings by and among Fort Bend County, Richmond and the city of Rosenberg.

At Tuesday’s Rosenberg City Council meeting, City Manager John Maresh noted that engineering is scheduled to begin in about 90 days.

At its Aug. 18, 2015 meeting, the Rosenberg council committed to participate in a joint project with the county, the city of Richmond and the Henderson-Wessendorff Foundation regarding the installation of directional horns and/or railroad quiet zones.

“Of course this is something we need,” council member Bill Benton said. “This is something we’ve been trying to get and this is something people really look forward to.”

As part of this project, the city of Rosenberg resolved to commit up to $100,000 for its share of fees to evaluate, establish, design and prepare construction cost estimates.

The quiet zone project is included in the city’s 2017 fiscal year capital improvement plan.

 

 

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From January, but still...

 

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/transportation/article/State-to-fund-study-of-Freeport-Rosenberg-rail-12522833.php

 

Quote

 

State funds Freeport-Rosenberg rail study

By Dug Begley

January 24, 2018 Updated: January 25, 2018 10:47pm

 

Texas transportation officials on Thursday approved $600,000 to study a rail line connecting Freeport and Rosenberg, which will need tens of millions of dollars and private investment to keep an anticipated flood of cargo containers from landing on Houston-area freeways.

 

"We're trying to move the ball a little bit further down and we're kind of on our own two-yard line at the moment," said Fort Bend County Commissioner Andy Meyers, a backer of plans to upgrade road and rail connections to Freeport, about 60 miles south of Houston.

 

The money, $480,000 from federal funds aimed at state highway planning and another $120,000 from state development credits available to the Houston region, was approved by the Texas Transportation Commission.

 

Transportation commissioner Laura Ryan of Houston said if freight volumes increase at Freeport without rail improvements, the added cargo "will go right into our congested area."

 

Houston area officials said the rail line and a plan to widen Texas 36 around Houston's western edges to accommodate freight would have regional benefits by taking trucks off Texas 288, where they join the fray of travelers headed into some of Houston's worst chokepoints.

 

With the state commitment, the Brazoria-Fort Bend Rural Rail District — made up of local officials in the two counties — will hire a consultant to "analyze the economics, environmental opportunities, constraints, potential alignments, and preliminary costs," according to a transportation commission summary.

 

 

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