DM&E Powder River Basin Expansion
Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad (DM&E) announced in 1997 that it would build over 260 miles of new alignment and rehabilitate 600 miles of track into Wyoming's Powder River Basin (PRB). venture would upgrade DM&E from a Class II to a Class I rail line. At time, railroad expected expansion to be completed in less than a decade.
Comprehensive environmental, permitting, cultural resources management support and design services kept project moving toward construction. At least 33 federal and state permits were required bee new rail line could be constructed and thousands of acres were studied to determine wetland mitigation and endangered species needs. When Canadian Pacific Railway announced it would acquire DM&E, rail line had already reached agreements with 55 of 56 cities along route and addressed expansion impacts, such as traffic control and whistle noise.
HDR has assisted DM&E more than a decade, providing initial environmental assessments and permitting; rail operations planning and modeling; track, yard, bridge and facilities design; and assisting with community relations. We continue to be involved, leading PRB program general engineering consulting team in project management, cost estimating, scheduling, material procurement, construction contract development, rail and track design, hydrology and hydraulics and overall environmental management project.