Secretary Buttigieg Visits Cornhusker Railroad in Grand Island, Nebraska; Announces $15.2 million Grant Award
The Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) grant will be used toward the $19 million Cornhusker Railroad Regional Connectivity Project
Cathcart Rail (“Cathcart”) was honored to host Secretary of Transportation, Pete Buttigieg, and other local dignitaries, on Monday, September 25, 2023 at Cathcart’s Cornhusker Railroad (“Cornhusker”) located in Grand Island, Nebraska. Cathcart’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Casey Cathcart, led Mr. Buttigieg on a tour of the Cornhusker as well as Cathcart’s Drop Table Repair Facility.
Following the tour, Mr. Buttigieg announced that Cathcart would be awarded a $15.2 million CRISI grant for the $19 million Cornhusker Railroad Regional Connectivity Project. The project is comprised of rebuilding the 5-mile mainline, building two 2-mile interchange sidings, expanding the repair facility, and upgrading various yard and track infrastructure. This necessary project will facilitate safer and more efficient movement and interchange of railcars on the Cornhusker and with its Class I partners, BNSF Railway and Union Pacific Railroad.
The Cornhusker, launched in 2021, is a 27-mile shortline railroad with branches in Grand Island, Nebraska and Hastings, Nebraska, with each branch offering dual BNSF and Union Pacific access. The Cornhusker serves three customers today, with two more customer sites under construction, and offers railcar storage, repair, and transloading. The Cornhusker moves over 10,000 railcars per year.
Additionally, several multi-hundred acre parcels are available for industrial development, with a myriad of state and local economic incentives attached. “The Cornhusker would be the perfect location for agriculture, fertilizer, renewable fuels, or material staging for energy, pipelines, or transportation. The sites offer high-volume electricity and natural gas access, ample space for large-scale development, and local access to Interstate 80,” said Mr. Cathcart. He added, “You can build the largest facility in the country, we can handle it, we have the land, utilities, and rail infrastructure to support it.”
About Cathcart Rail
Cathcart is a leading freight rail services and transportation company based in Columbus, Ohio. The company currently operates the largest railcar services network, encompassing 18 repair facilities and over 75 field services locations, as well as a rail services division that operates three shortline railroads and a dozen contract switching and transloading sites, among other services such as railcar storage, track maintenance, and railcar parts. Cathcart was founded in February 2016 by the father and son team of Thomas Cathcart and Casey Cathcart with 20 employees, and now employs nearly 1,000 people across 110+ locations in 33 states.