GLBR: Down The Line
The Great Lakes Basin Railroad (GLBR) was conceived in 2009 as a way to alleviate rail freight congestion through the Chicago rail yards and provide other benefits to manufacturers and freight companies and to their customers.
It progressed from concept to serious plans over the next several years and, in March 2016, the federal Surface Transportation Board (STB) gave notice that it would prepare an environmental impact statement on the proposed route and scheduled 10 public hearings.
Those hearings uncovered controversy in many areas along the originally proposed route and its subsequent variations as affected residents and others protested what they saw as negative aspects of GLBR.
With the recent request by Great Lakes Basin Transportation, parent company of GLBR, to pause the STB environmental study, WNIJ News determined that an update in the status is due.
This five-part series, which began Monday, Dec. 12, looks at the following aspects of the GLBR project:
- Part One: What is the Great Lakes Basin Railroad? WNIJ's Jenna Dooley and Susan Stephens discuss the project and its plans.
- Part Two: What does the GLBR project mean for the environment? WNIJ's Jenna Dooley explores the possible environmental impact of the proposed route.
- Part Three: How will the GLBR acquire land for the proposed route? WNIJ's Chase Cavanaugh explains the options available to the railroad for getting the property it will need.
- Part Four: How do affected landowners feel about the GLBR project? WNIJ's Susan Stephens talks with property owners who would be affected along the proposed route.
- Part Five: What could the GLBR project mean for local economies? WNIJ's Guy Stephens talked with an enthusiastic Rochelle official and Chase Cavanaugh found more ambivalence from economic planners in Rockford about the potential value of the railroad.