FHWA Talking Freight Webinar: Rail Freight Growth Opportunities and Challenges

FHWA Talking Freight Webinar:
Rail Freight Growth Opportunities and Challenges


Date/Time: April 21, 2021 1:00 – 2:30 pm ET

Topic: Rail Freight Growth Opportunities and Challenges

Registration: https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/fpd/talking_freight/index.htm

Description and Presentations: The freight rail industry, like most other freight transportation modes, has experienced varying demand in recent years but in recent months has generally experienced strong volumes.  Large freight rail carriers are taking various steps to make themselves more competitive to capture medium and long-haul freight, while smaller carriers are focusing on improving their service quality to better serve their regional and local customers.  Additionally, many state Departments of Transportation have placed greater emphasis in recent years on working with the freight rail carriers in their state to ensure rail freight shipments can move in an economically and operationally efficient manner while not negatively impacting the communities they serve.  Freight rail’s operational complexity can sometimes make it a challenge to achieve all the stakeholders’ goals concurrently, but through working together freight rail growth opportunities should continue to be plentiful.


This webinar will discuss current freight rail industry and state DOT initiatives to manage freight rail volumes throughout the United States.


State of Freight Rail – Large Rail Carrier Perspective

This presentation will provide an overview of current Class I railroad issues and trends, and talk about what steps large freight rail carriers are taking to increase their volumes and operational efficiency.


  • Luisa Fernandez-Willey, Association of American Railroads, Assistant Vice President of Policy and Economics


State of Freight Rail – Short Line Railroad Perspective

This presentation will examine what regional and local short line railroads are doing to work with their customers to increase their service quality and maximize the benefits they are providing the communities they serve.


  • Joe Arbona, Genesee & Wyoming Railroad, Assistant Vice President, Government Affairs


State of Freight Rail – State Department of Transportation Perspective

This presentation will discuss how state DOTs are working with freight rail carriers in their states to enhance freight rail efficiency while also addressing the impacts freight rail operations can have on their state’s municipalities.


  • John Maddox, Kansas Department of Transportation, Freight and Rail Program Manager




If you have not yet participated in Talking Freight, I encourage you to do so. These monthly seminars, sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, are held via web conference, which means that you view the PowerPoint presentations over the Internet while listening to the presenters over your computer or the telephone. There is no cost involved and you do not have to leave your desk to participate. More information about Talking Freight is available at http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/fpd/talking_freight/index.htm Links to past presentations and recordings are available on http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/freightplanning/talking.htm.

Talking Freight seminars are eligible for 1.5 AICP Certification Maintenance Credits (for AICP members). In order to receive credit, you must attend the full seminar and login to the seminar with your full name or type your full name into the chat area during the seminar if you are in a room with a group of people. Visit the AICP web site for more information about AICP Certification Maintenance Credits.

In addition, those who are interested can obtain a certificate for 1.5 PDH hours.

If you have any questions about the webinar content, please contact Chip Millard, FHWA Freight Office, at 202-366-4415 or chip.millard@dot.gov. If you have any questions about the technology aspects of the webinar,please contact Jennifer Symoun, Toxcel, 703-754-0248Jennifer.symoun@toxcel.com.