- Associated Press - Sunday, September 27, 2015

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - The weak demand for crude oil and ethanol has delayed construction of a proposed $30.9 million rail car maintenance facility in northwest Iowa.

The Sioux City Journal reports (https://bit.ly/1gXGdxw ) that local officials believe the TrinityRail project will still be built in Sioux City once shipments rebound.

The 150,000-square-foot facility was supposed to create 250 new jobs including 160 that would pay $16.63 an hour. That’s why state officials approved tax credits for the project last year.

Starting last summer, crude oil prices began to fall - sliding from near $100 to under $45 in March. Rail traffic numbers show the sharp drop in demand since prices collapsed.

BNSF railroad said it has been bringing between 12 and 18 trains of crude oil through Sioux City each week since May. But that is roughly half the previous rate of about 30 oil trains a week.

Sioux City economic development director Marty Dougherty said the company is re-evaluating the size of the project. TrinityRail hasn’t finalized a project agreement with the city, which owns the land.

“They indicated to us that they still plan to build here, but they delayed when they’re going to start,” Dougherty said. “We’re waiting for them to make the final decision as to the size of the plant.”

TrinityRail’s plans should be clear by the end of the year, Dougherty said.

TrinityRail is a division of Trinity Industries Inc. which provides industrial products and services for railcars, inland barges, storage containers and structural wind towers.

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Information from: Sioux City Journal, https://www.siouxcityjournal.com


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