Federal board dismisses Montana coal railroad application
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A federal transportation panel has dismissed a proposed $400 million railroad that would have hauled coal from a mine near the Montana-Wyoming border.
Tuesday's action by the Surface Transportation Board comes five months after the backers of the Tongue River Railroad suspended their application for the 42-mile line.
The board also turned down a request from southeastern Montana landowners who wanted to permanently block the railroad from re-applying for a permit.
Plans for the coal mine the railroad would have served were shelved in March, by bankrupt Arch Coal, Inc.
The company cited weak coal markets, a shortage of cash and an uncertain permitting outlook.
The Tongue River Railroad was sponsored by Arch, BNSF Railway and TRRC Financing.
It was first proposed more than three decades ago.