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Thread: The RCP&E

  1. #1
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    Default The RCP&E

    I'd thought I'd share some information on the road I model, the Rapid City, Pierre, and Eastern, a very young regional railroad owned by Genesee & Wyoming inc.

    The story of the railroad starts in the early 80s when CNW announced plans to abandon a section of track in Minnesota and South Dakota. A deal with the CNW was reached in April 1986, forming the Dakota, Minnesota, and Eastern railroad. As part of the deal DM&E were given sections of former CNW track from Winona, Minnesota to Rapid City, South Dakota, The DM&E began operations on this track in the fall of 1986. From startup to the railroad's tenth anniversary in 1996, the DM&E hauled over 500,000 carloads. In November 1996 Kevin Schieffer took the reins of the company with ambitious plans for its future.

    In 1997 the DM&E announced plans for a 281 mile expansion into the Powder River Basin, with the intention of running coal unit trains. The plan also required upgrading 598 miles of existing trackage, and the construction of 3 new yards. The proposed expansion would have been the largest new railroad construction in the country since the completion of the Milwaukee Road's Pacific extension in 1909. Opposition to the expansion erupted almost immediately, the most vocal opponent, the Mayo Clinic of Rochester, Minnesota raised concerns over emergency vehicles being stuck at grade crossings, and the sound of the trains. The city of Rochester filed a lawsuit to force the railroad to build a bypass around the city, the estimated price of the bypass was placed at $100 million. The STB ruled that no bypasses would need to be built, even though the Cities of Rochester and Pierre had requested them.

    In 2002 the DM&E purchased I&M Rail Link. The railroad renamed IMRL to Iowa, Chicago, & Eastern. the combined IC&E/DM&E system was the largest Class II railroad in the country by miles, and the only system with direct connections to all Class I railroads.

    Plans for the expansion ground to a halt in 2007 when the FRA rejected the request for a $2.3 billion loan to build the expansion over concerns that cost overruns would place the DM&E in a position where it would be unable to repay the loan. Without the capital to construct the expansion, the railroad was sold to Canadian Pacific in September 2007 for $1.38 billion, CP continued to operate the railroad under the DM&E name, but was unable to generate the capital to build the PRB expansion. On December 3, 2012 CP announced it had suspended plans for the expansion indefinitely. The next day the railroad was put up for sale.

    On January 2, 2014 it was announced that Genesse and Wyoming would purchase the entire DM&E system west of Tracy, Minnesota. The Railroad resumed operations in June of 2014 as the Rapid City, Pierre, and Eastern. The railroad serves customers shipping oover 52,000 carloads of grain and other products. The DM&E's iconic blue & yellow scheme was preserved on most locomotives, although a few have been repainted in the G&W scheme.

    Well I hoped you enjoyed this history lesson on the RCP&E. Wasn't easy typing all this on an iPad lol.
    Last edited by robertdraper343; 20th Feb 2015 at 12:12 PM. Reason: Forgot a word
    Modeling the Rapid City, Pierre, and Eastern (RCP&E) in N scale

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  3. #2
    Vince P Guest


    Sounds good what will you run for power -3's

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