BNSF Railway has announced its 2018 expenditure program in Oklahoma, which totals about $110 million.
This year’s plan will focus on maintenance projects, “to ensure BNSF continues to operate a safe and reliable rail network,” according to the company.
Most of this year’s capital plan is set for replacing and upgrading rail, rail ties and ballast, which are the main components for BNSF’s tracks.
Throughout the last five years, the company has invested about $630 million to expand and maintain its network in Oklahoma, according to the company.
This year’s maintenance includes about 620 miles of track surfacing and/or undercutting work and replacing nearly 30 miles of rail and more than 230,000 ties. The Avard Subdivision, running between Avard and Tulsa, will have a new siding installed near Hopeton.
“Each year, BNSF hauls approximately 28,000 carloads of wheat, corn, soybeans and other agricultural products from Oklahoma to domestic markets and to the ports for export. We also move the fertilizer that helps those crops grow, in addition to consumer products, construction materials and energy products,” said Janssen Thompson, general manager of operations for the Red River Division. “The maintenance projects BNSF has planned for this year will help ensure the safe and reliable movement of freight in Oklahoma and our entire rail network.”
BNSF’s 2018 planned capital investments in Oklahoma are part of the company’s announced $3.3 billion network-wide capital expenditure program announced last month.
Announced investments include $2.4 billion to replace and maintain core network and related assets, about $500 million towards expansion and efficiency projects, $100 million for continued implementation of Positive Train Control and $300 million for freight cars and other equipment acquisitions.
BNSF operates about 32,500 route miles of track in 28 states and three Canadian provinces, and transports consumer goods, grain and agricultural products, low-sulfur coal and industrial goods including petroleum, chemicals, housing materials, foods and beverages, according to the company.
One of BNSF’s railroads crosses through Enid, entering in the southwest corner of the city, moving northeast below the North Van Buren overpass, and exiting the city on a northeasterly route.