Union Pacific officially opens up New Mexico-based intermodal facility
May 28, 2014
Class I railroad carrier Union Pacific (UP) said today it formally introduced its $400 million, Santa Teresa, New Mexico-based Intermodal Ramp (STIR), which opened up on April 1.
Company officials said that this 2,200-acre site will connect businesses to strategic markets in the Southwestern United States and beyond, adding it will provide logistics gains for shippers along its Sunset Line, which runs 760 miles from El Paso, Texas to Los Angeles and serves key locations in Calexico, Mexico, Yuma, Arizona, Phoenix, and Tucson. UP said it will increase throughput along that route and improve its projection capability to points North, East and West.
STIR is located west of the Santa Teresa Airport and is comprised of a fueling station, crew change buildings, and an intermodal ramp with an annual lift capacity of about 225,000 containers.
While STIR was being constructed from 2011-2014, 3,000 construction jobs were created, and STIR will host 300-to-600 permanent jobs when it hits full capacity, according to UP. What’s more, UP said STIR’s estimated economic impact to New Mexico will top $500 million.
Union Pacific Director of Corporate Communications Aaron Hunt told LM that the impetus for UP to build STIR was to expand its intermodal operations in the region.
“Our facility in El Paso is surrounded by other industry so we shifted our intermodal operations to Santa Teresa,” he said. “We are still doing a healthy manifest business out of our rail yard in El Paso. This new facility in Santa Teresa will give us the capability to operate with greater fluidity along the Sunset Route. The time it takes us to fuel locomotives on trains moving through the Santa Teresa region has been cut significantly because of this new facility.”
Prior to the launch of this new facility, all of UP’s southern New Mexico operations were conducted in its El Paso rail yard.
“Our new rail facility in New Mexico is a key part of our relentless effort to create value for our customers through safety, service and efficiency,” UP CEO Jack Koraleski said in a statement. “Union Pacific’s $400 million investment in New Mexico will improve the fluidity and efficiency of the Union Pacific network and will have a positive long-term economic impact in the region.”
UP said it plans to invest roughly $4.1 billion in 2014 in capital investments as part of its long-term strategy to provide safe, efficient service across its 32,000 mile network.
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