New owner plans to expand Cold Train

Dan Wheat

Capital Press

The Cold Train refrigerated rail service is being bought by a Michigan Railroad company that plans to triple its capacity in five years.

QUINCY, Wash. — Cold Train Express Intermodal Service in Quincy and Portland will be expanded to 1,400 refrigerated rail cars over the next five years under new ownership.

Federated Railways Inc., of Farmington Hills, Mich., announced March 2 that it is acquiring Rail Logistics, of Overland Park, Kan., owner of Cold Train. The service was launched in Quincy in April 2010 and grew to more than 400 Hyundai 53-foot refrigerated containers in 2013.

Federated Capital Corp. plans to add a minimum of 1,000 containers to the Cold Train fleet over the next five years, Louis P. Ferris, president of Federated Capital, said in announcing the acquisition.

Shippers and receivers are looking for door-to-door intermodal logistics that decrease cost, increase efficiency and reduce the carbon footprint, Ferris said in a news release.

Federated’s capital will allow Cold Train to keep pace with increasing demand as it moves toward becoming the “largest asset-based temperature controlled domestic pure intermodal carrier,” said Steve Lawson, president of Rail Logistics. Lawson will continue as president and CEO of Cold Train in Overland Park.

Cold Train’s refrigerated rail service has grown in popularity with Washington and Oregon shippers of apples and produce as a cost-effective alternative to refrigerated trucking. Service now includes 20 Midwest, East Coast and Southeastern states. Cold Train hauls frozen, refrigerated and dry goods from those areas to Northwest destinations.

Quincy was ranked as the lowest-cost location for operating a distribution center or warehouse in a recent study of 29 western U.S. and Canadian locations with intermodal terminals, Lawson said.

“With fuel prices continuing to remain high and long-haul trucks becoming increasingly regulated and in tighter supply, shippers and receivers are finding Cold Train is a reliable, cost effective and fast transportation option while also adding much needed capacity,” Lawson said.

Federated Railways is an affiliate of Federated Capital Corp., which owns the Great Lakes Central Railroad, a 400-mile regional railroad operating entirely in Michigan, and a variety of service, leasing and railroad assets.


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