Portion of Ex-Sunset Limited Route Being Sold

A portion of the route once used by Amtrak’s Sunset Limited east of New Orleans is being sold to a regional railroad.

CSX recently said it is selling 373 miles of track in Florida and Georgia between Pensacola and Jacksonville to the Florida Gulf & Atlantic Railroad.

A notice of intent to acquire the rail lines that was filed with the U.S. Surface Transportation Board did not disclose the sale price.

The line in question is located in parts of Tallahassee, Baldwin, Chattahoochee and Pensacola, Florida; and Attapulgus, Georgia.

FG&A plans to hire 37 employees who will be based in Tallahassee.

The Sunset Limited used the track being sold until August 2005 when portions of the line were heavy damaged by Hurricane Katrina.

In recent years The Gulf Coast Rail Services Working Group, which includes the Federal Rail Administration, the Southern Rail Commission and various Gulf Coast cities, has sought to restore Amtrak service on the line.

Those efforts suffered a setback earlier this year when the State of Alabama declined to provide funding to help pay for capital and operating costs.

Advocates of the service had also noted that CSX had seemed hostile to the idea of reinstating intercity rail service and had demanded a high level of capital investments in the line’s infrastructure.

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