Autauga Northern Railroad

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Autauga Northern Railroad
Reporting mark AUT
Locale Central Alabama
Dates of operation 2011–
Predecessor Norfolk Southern
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Length 43.62 miles (70.20 km)

The Autauga Northern Railroad (reporting mark AUT) is a shortline operating between Maplesville, Alabama and a plant of the International Paper Company near Prattville, Alabama, 43.62 miles (70.20 km). This trackage is leased from Norfolk Southern and was originally operated by the Mobile & Ohio, Gulf Mobile & Ohio, and Illinois Central Gulf railroads as part of their line between Montgomery, Alabama and Tuscaloosa, Alabama. In addition, Autauga Northern uses 10.08 miles (16.22 km) of trackage rights over CSX, also ex-GM&O, to gain access into Montgomery. The lease from NS was approved in February 2011, and operations began in April 2011 as part of Watco Companies.[1][2]

Watco undertook a $2.39 million refurbishment of the railway after beginning operations to upgrade track to handle 25 mile-per-hour speeds.[3] The railroad operates six days a week under Watco control, moving about 9,000 carloads per year.[3]


  1. ^ "STB Finance Docket No. 35465". 17 February 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2011. 
  2. ^ "Watco inaugurates short line in Alabama". Progressive Railroading. April 12, 2011. Retrieved 2011-04-12. 
  3. ^ a b "Watco announces Alabama short line debut". Railway Age. 12 April 2011. Archived from the original on 5 December 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2011.