Railroad Development Corporation

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Railroad Development Corporation
IndustryRail transport
FounderHenry Posner III
United States

The Railroad Development Corporation is an American railroad holding company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It operates several short line railroads outside the United States and acts as an investor, with management and institutional investors as partners. It was founded in 1987 by former Conrail employee Henry Posner III.



RDC participated in the ownership of two rail lines in Argentina:[1]


In August 2012 Ferrocarril del Pacífico that RDC has a shareholding in, resumed operations on the Buenaventura to Yumbo section of the Pacific line.[2][3]


RDC managed the previously closed 914 mm (3 ft) gauge Ferrovias Guatemala (FVG) under a 50-year concession from 1997.[4] In August 2006, the government of Guatemala invalidated a 2003 contract for the usufruct of rolling stock and other equipment.[5] Due to the continuing uncertainty leading to losses, FVG suspended all operations on October 1, 2007 while continuing with legal actions against the Guatemalan government.[6][7] The legal action was settled in RDC's favor in December 2013.[8][9]


In July 1999 the Peruvian government awarded a consortium led by RDC a 30-year concession to operate the former Ferrocarril del Centro. Investors in Ferrocarril Central Andino (FCCA) included RDC, Juan Olaechea & Company, Minas Buenaventura, Cementos Andino, Mitsui and the Commonwealth Development Corporation..[1][10] It was agreed in June 2006 by the Peruvian government that FCCA should go ahead with converting the Ferrocarril Huancayo - Huancavelica from 3 ft (914 mm) to 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) (standard gauge). Estimated to take 16 months, the US$33m project was to be funded jointly by the government and the Development Bank of Latin America.[11][12]This project was finished by October 2010.> [13]

United States[edit]

RDC operates the Iowa Interstate Railroad.[1] RDC first invested in the railroad in 1991, exercising an option to purchase in January 2004.[14][15]

In November 2008, RDC entered a joint venture with LeGrand America to operate a business class road coach service from Pittsburgh and Harrisburg.[16] It ceased in July 2009.[17][18]



RDC purchased a 5% shareholding in Eesti Raudtee on August 31, 2001, selling it on January 9, 2007.[19][20][21][22]


In January 2015, RDC purchased a 25% shareholding in Eurorail.[23]


In 2009 Réseau Ferré de France, Caisse des dépôts et consignations and RDC formed a joint venture to promote local freight.[24]


RDC long-distance trains in Germany: BTE-operated Flixtrain between Hamburg and Cologne (green) & BTE AutoReiseZug (also green)

Hamburg-Köln-Express (HKX) was founded as a joint venture in November 2009 between RDC (75%), Locomore (17.5%) and railway investor Michael Schabas (7.5%).[25] Services were initially planned to start in August 2010 but this was postponed after the paths it had identified for its services were claimed by Keolis for a proposed Mulhouse to Hamburg open-access service. Keolis later abandoned its plans and HKX was able to reapply for the paths.[26] Operations commenced on July 23, 2012.[27]

In December 2015, RDC-owned HKX stopped operating the Hamburg-Köln-Express, the operation was then carried out by the independent rail tourism company BahnTouristikExpress (BTE). Following 2016 reports that the German motorail operator DB Fernverkehr was about to terminate all motorail services in Germany by October 2016, RDC purchased a 50% share in BTE as the company had a number of car-carrier wagons in stock.[28] Following the purchase, on 18 October 2016, RDC commenced operating RDC Autozug Sylt car shuttle services from Niebüll to Westerland after securing a 10-year access agreement. Services were initially hauled by a Transdev Class 251 while using BTE car-carrier wagons.[29][30] BTE in December 2016 started operating the BTE AutoReiseZug motorail service between Hamburg and Lörrach.[31]

In October 2017, BTE and therefore RDC terminated the Hamburg-Köln-Express service without further notice. The service of the former Hamburg-Köln-Express was then restarted in March 2018 on the same route by the company Flixmobility under the brand name Flixtrain but again with BTE as the train operator. The brand name HKX was replaced by the green Flixtrain label. In November 2017, RDC bought two Siemens Vectron diesel locomotives for its RDC Autozug Sylt car shuttle operations.[32]

In 2018 and 2019, BTE is also offering the seasonal night train Alpen Express (winter) between the Netherlands and Austria in cooperation with the Dutch agency Treinreiswinkel.

United Kingdom[edit]

RDC is a shareholder in Vivarail that is converting London Underground D78 Stock electric multiple units into Class 230 diesel multiple units.[33]



Through the Central East African Railways consortium, RDC operated the Malawi Railways network which connects with the Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique line in Mozambique from December 1999.[34][35] The operation was sold in 2008.[1][36][37]


  1. ^ a b c d RDC operating entities Railroad Development Corporation
  2. ^ Presidential launch for Pacific revival Railway Gazette International August 6, 2012
  3. ^ Ferrocarril del Pacífico Railroad Development Corporation
  4. ^ RDC to revive Guatemala railways Railway Gazette International August 1997
  5. ^ Guatemala government violates terms of railroad privatization agreement Railroad Development Corporation August 28, 2006
  6. ^ Ferrovias Guatemala Railroad Development Corporation July 6, 2007
  7. ^ Central America going nowhere Railway Gazette International August 2007
  8. ^ RDC wins six-year battle for compensation from Guatemala International Railway Journal December 4, 2013
  9. ^ Full settlement for Railroad Development Corp in Guatemala dispute Railway Gazette International December 4, 2013
  10. ^ Peruvian Rail Concession takes RDC to new heights Railroad Development Corporation July 27, 1999
  11. ^ Huancavelica upgrade Railway Gazette International June 2006
  12. ^ Great South American Rail Adventure Archived 2008-05-13 at the Wayback Machine Trains & Travel
  13. ^ Trains (magazine), March 2009, p68
  14. ^ The History of IAIS Iowa Interstate Railroad
  15. ^ RDC Purchases Iowa Interstate Railroad Development Corporation January 2, 2004
  16. ^ Steel City Flyer to Begin Non-Stop Service between Pittsburgh and Harrisburg Railroad Development Corporation November 7, 2008
  17. ^ Capitol bus service to end next week Pittsburgh Post-Gazette July 10, 2009
  18. ^ Steel City Flyer to End Service on July 16, 2009 Railroad Development Corporation July 10, 2009
  19. ^ Baltic Rail Services Completes the Purchase of Controlling Interest in Eesti Raudtee, Estonian State Railways Railroad Development Corporation September 4, 2001
  20. ^ Estonian privatisation completed Railway Gazette International October 1, 2001
  21. ^ EVR's private interlude is over Railway Gazette International February 2007
  22. ^ Estonia railway operator has new controller Financial Times January 17, 2007
  23. ^ RDC takes 25% stake in Eurorail Railway Gazette International January 12, 2015
  24. ^ RDC in French freight venture Railway Gazette International April 2, 2009
  25. ^ Hamburg-Köln-Express to launch Railway Gazette International November 4, 2009
  26. ^ Open-access with the X factor International Railway Journal December 14, 2011
  27. ^ HKX prepares to take on DB Railway Gazette International July 5, 2012
  28. ^ Land Transport Finance - Markets DVB Bank 31 December 2016
  29. ^ RDC Deutschland launches Sylt car-carrying trains International Railway Journal October 18, 2016
  30. ^ Autozug Sylt car-carrying service launched Railway Gazette International October 18, 2016
  31. ^ Private operator to run German motor rail service International Railway Journal April 18, 2016
  32. ^ "[DE] RDC Autozug Sylt opts for Vectron DE". Railcolor News. 2017-11-10. Retrieved 2018-12-20.
  33. ^ RDC seeks diverse opportunities in European market International Railway Journal May 18, 2016
  34. ^ RDC Led Consortium Reaches Agreement on Concession in Mozambique Railroad Development Corporation February 10, 2000
  35. ^ A luta continua!, Bradley J Knapp and Henry Posner III Railway Gazette International June 2004
  36. ^ RDC sells Central East African Railway stake Railway Gazette International September 15, 2008
  37. ^ Company profile Central East African Railways

External links[edit]