Photo by Jill Bock, Staff
Construction of a rail spur to enable Associated Electric Cooperative Inc. power plant at Marston to link to the Burlington Northern Railroad tracks is under way. The construction, which will include building a overpass over Interstate 55, is expected to be completed on the 2.8 miles of rail spur by 2013, according to company officials. Currently coal is brought into the power plant on Union Pacific trains. "Having access to both railroads in the future will give us some competitive pricing," said Nancy Southworth, corporate communications manager. "Since the rate payers are the co-op members we are trying to make the costs as affordable and low as possible." The rail spur is one of two projects by AECI this year with construction of a new railroad siding nearing completion. The new railroad siding will enable one coal train to be parked while another finishes unloading, Southworth said.