November 21, 2014, The Daily News
The Port of Kalama has reached an agreement with Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad to lease an area for a “laydown yard” along the Kalama River near Hendrickson Drive.
BNSF will use the area to store construction equipment needed to build a third main line and new track sidings in the Kalama-to- Kelso rail corridor. The port commissioners already have approved $660,000 for construction of the laydown yard, which will require demolishing an old dog food plant and building a railroad spur.
BNSF will lease the space for at least three years and will pay $95,000 a month during the first year to cover the port’s construction costs. It will pay $14,000 a month on a month-to-month lease in the second and third years. When BNSF finishes construction, the laydown yard will be converted to a light-industrial area, and Port Executive Director Mark Wilson said the railroad spur can serve future businesses at the port.
The BNSF third rail project is meant to ease congestion in the Kalama-to-Kelso rail corridor.