Socioeconomic Characteristics and Forecasts affecting the Demand for Railroad Transportation



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Texas A&M University Texas Transportation Institute


Railroads have played a vital role in the industrial development of Texas by providing essential transportation services to all parts of the State and the Nation. There are many things which determine the demand for railroad services in Texas including the supply of and demand for raw materials (sand, gravel, minerals, petroleum, etc.), agricultural products and manufactured products produced in Texas. Railroads now serve 226 (90 percent) of the 254 countries within the State. With several applications for railroad abandonments pending, the number of counties with rail service is expected to be reduced. The need for railroad services by a county is indicated by the annual level of retail sales, agricultural receipts, manufacture value added and mineral production maintained by that county. If railroad services to a county are changed through abandonments, mainline consolidation, etc., the effects are reflected in the county's population, employment, and per capita income. In turn, changes in the socioeconomic conditions of a county can affect the level of railroad services that can be provided in the future. To assist in the evaluation of what level of railroad service that should be provided in each county and the State as a whole, selected socioeconomic forecasts and characteristics are presented in this report.


57 pages


Texas, rail transportation, shipping, economics