2013 News Archive
(January - March)
Photos: Ski Train, an Alaska tradition - 3/25/13
Alaska Dispatch
Photos: Ski Train, an Alaska tradition - click here
Last adult Colony member dies at 101 - 3/24/13
Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman
By Heather A. Resz

PALMER — This week marked the end of an era that began more than 75 years ago on May 10, 1935, when the first group of Colonists arrived on the Alaska Railroad.

Minnie Olson, the last of the original known 404 adults who participated in the Matanuska Colony project, died March 18 in Wilmore, Ky. She was 101. Services are planned in Wilmore today.

[See story]

State sells bonds for rail, other projects - 3/24/13
Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman
By Andrew Wellner

JUNEAU — In a bid sale Thursday, the state raised $30 million in funding for the project to bring rail service to Point MacKenzie.

According to a press release from the state Department of Revenue, the sale was for $149 million in bonds, all of which were sold to JP Morgan Securities.

[See story]

A stretch of railroad helps Nenana come into its own - 3/18/13
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
By Ray Bonnell

In March 1914, Congress authorized the construction of a government railroad in the Territory of Alaska. The northern terminus of the railroad would be in Fairbanks, but there were two competing routes from ice-free ports at tidewater to the Interior. There was an "eastern" route starting at Valdez or Cordova on Prince William Sound, and a "western" route, starting at Seward or Portage Bay on the Kenai Peninsula.

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Alaska Railroad cost-cutting will bring 29 layoffs - 3/8/13

FAIRBANKS —- The Alaska Railroad announced Thursday that it plans to eliminate 54 jobs as part of a broad cost-cutting effort, following a $45 million drop in finances since 2011.

[See story]

N-scale Pt Saint Charles cabooses - 3/7/13
By Tom Koole
A company in Canada is going to release an N-scale CN Pt Saint Charles cabooses in mid 2013.  I talked to Jeff from Prairie Shadows Model Railway Co,  He said they plan on doing the Alaska version in the second run.
Alaska Railroad Losing 54 Positions, Laying Off 29 Employees - 3/7/13
By Jessica Ridgway

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The Alaska Railroad Corp. says it will have to lay off more than two dozen people and leave a similar number of positions unfilled, due to budget shortfalls that have forced it to restructure the organization.

[See story]

Alaska Railroad lays off 29, cuts 25 vacant positions - 3/7/13
Anchorage Daily News
By Casey Grove

The Alaska Railroad is laying off 29 employees and cutting 25 vacant positions because of decreases in freight revenue and federal funding, the state railroad corporation announced Thursday.

[See story]

Girders for the Tanana River bridge at Salcha - 3/2/13
By Sherman Stebbins

I was leaving town early a few mornings ago and Carlisle trucks were fueling up at a local station here in Delta Junction. For safety they had been delivering these at night for the past month from Valdez to the new bridge construction in Salcha. One of the drivers told me they got a little behind schedule so they had to make a delivery during daylight hours. This meant a good photo op! Each girder is 165 feet long. The whole rig with girder hauling down the highway is about 210 feet. Total trip from Valdez to Salcha is about 350 miles. I didnt ask but I am sure it is taking about 12 hours or more for each girder to get to the bridge. It just so happened an engineer was traveling in a support vehicle on this trip. He stated that these girders are spanning the Tanana River 4 wide then the rail and road decking will be placed on top. If you do the math it seems like well over 100 girders? It would be neat if someone new the exact number for input. These are very interesting rolling down the highway!

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Petition seeks Palmer railroad restoration - 2/26/13

PALMER — The next time Palmer City Manager Doug Griffin heads to Juneau, he’s likely going to bring with him a pile of signatures on a petition asking that the railroad tracks through Palmer be returned to service.

[See story]

Judge refuses to block rail extension to port - 2/14/13
Anchorage Daily News
By Dan Joling/Assocaiated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Three environmental groups have been denied an injunction to block a rail line to Port MacKenzie in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough north of Anchorage.

[See story]

MoW equipment - 2/8/13
Submitted by John Taubeneck, our ever vigilant northwest coast correspondent
Yesterday I saw a tamper/liner, a tamper, four spikers and a Kershaw tie crane loaded on ARR flats here in Seattle.  The crane is ARR R1023.  None of the other machines were numbered or lettered for the ARR.  In the same yard are several miles of new rail stacked up.  It looks like the ARR is getting ready for spring.
Alaska RR No. 2 Conductor Steve Culver retires - 2/6/13

Steve Culver was a fixture on Alaska Railroad's passenger trains and was often mentioned in media stories about ARR's passenger trains such as this one in USA Today.

Many regarded Steve as the "ambassador of the Alaska Railroad" and he always took a great deal of pride in showing the State of Alaska to guests on the train. Anyone who has ridden ARR's Denali Star or the Hurricane Turn has likely met Steve. He was second in trainmen's seniority only to Harry Ross, another ARR character in his own right.

Steve hired out in 1971 and received his conductor's date in 1974. After nearly 42 years of service, Steve pulled the pin on February 1st. He will be missed.

Appeals Court Clears The Way For Railroad Expansion - 1/25/13

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals published Final Comment, denying the challenge made to the Federal Surface Transportation Board's approval of the Alaska Railroad Port MacKenzie extension.

[See story]

Ambitious Alberta-Alaska rail link proposed - 1/8/13
Fairbanks Daily New-Miner
By Jeff Richardson

FAIRBANKS — A Canadian business group is proposing a railway link between Alberta and Alaska as a possible route for bringing landlocked oil to market, but some of the details have been met with skepticism by trans-Alaska oil pipeline officials.

The proposal, being pushed by a business consortium called G Seven Generations, would connect Fort McMurray, Alberta, and Delta Junction with a rail line. G7G is seeking $10 million from the Alberta government to help fund a $40 million feasibility study, according to an article in Wednesday’s Edmonton Journal.

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Railroad solicits rail testing - 1/2/13

The Alaska Railroad Corporation (ARRC) is soliciting rail testing for approximately 535 miles of its mainline track twice a year. sidings will be tested once a year.

[See story]



Page created 2/1/13 and last updated 4/1/13