A PLAN FOR TOMORROW

Nationalization of the railroads is of concern to everyone. There are only two alternatives to nationalization: retain the status quo or massively re-structure the industry. Eight railroads in the Northeast are bankrupt, four railroads in the Midwest are marginal earners, the industry needs huge infusions of new capital, and must somehow refinance nearly a billion in longterm debt before the end of 1980. Return on equity for 1972 was only 3 percent, and net working capital was down. Railroads are no longer a growth industry. Maintaining the status quo won't be good enough, and some kind of re-structuring is clearly indicated. This article believes the industry should re-structure itself into a small number of nationwide systems. The root cause of the problem is the corporate structure. The railroad network must go everywhere. The article advocates four competitive, privately owned systems, reaching all major centers. It would begin with four large systems in the West, and permit them to operate over the tracks of the two or three systems in the South. Eventually, as the Eastern situation is relieved, the four Western systems would be permitted to operate into the East.

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Cahners Publishing Company, Incorporated

    5 South Wabash Avenue
    Chicago, IL  USA  60603
  • Authors:
    • FORD, N
  • Publication Date: 1973-9

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 71-76
  • Serial:
    • Modern Railroads
    • Volume: 28
    • Issue Number: 9
    • Publisher: K-III Press, Incorporated
    • ISSN: 0736-2064

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00047974
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 31 1974 12:00AM