Transportation and Economic Impact of Texas Short Line Railroads

While several recent studies have examined the role of Class I rail transportation on large cities, regions within the state, or provided even statewide analysis, this project will analyze the transportation and economic impacts of the state's Class III (or Short line railroads that have an annual operating revenue of less than $20 million) including their impacts upon smaller, tail-served communities. Many Short line railroads service communities only have one significant industry and if that industry fails, the entire community would suffer economically as a result. Increasing truck traffic would both increase roadway maintenance requirements and potentially reduce safety of others using roadways where Class III rail service is lost or not available. The research team will identify direct and indirect customer bases of the Short line, conduct interviews with Short line railroad officials and the customers, and follow up with interviews of local community leaders (i.e. mayors, economic development directors. Rural Rail Transportation District (RRTD) officials, etc.) to determine detailed roles and plans for the Short line network of the state. Data collected during the project will then analyzed to document the impacts of Short line railroad operations for the state and its local communities.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Texas Department of Transportation

    125 E. 11th Street
    Austin, TX  United States  78701-2483
  • Project Managers:

    Badgley, Sonya

  • Performing Organizations:

    Texas Southern University, Houston

    Center for Transportation Training and Research
    3100 Cleburne
    Houston, TX  United States  77004

    University of Houston, Texas

    Houston, TX  United States 
  • Principal Investigators:

    Qiao, Fengxiang

  • Start Date: 20150901
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20160930

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01619655
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Texas Department of Transportation
  • Contract Numbers: 0-6887
  • Files: RiP, STATEDOT
  • Created Date: Dec 21 2016 3:54PM