What's News in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin

2007 News Archive

09/27/2007 | Railroad Petitions to Close Bain Station Road

On Thursday, August 23, 2007, Union Pacific Railroad filed a petition with the State of Wisconsin to close Bain Station Road between Highway 31 on the east and Highway H on the west. According to the petition, there have been three traffic accidents between automobiles and trains with reported injuries and property damage during the past 28 years (since 1979). Approximately 4,380 trains (12 per day) travel the crossing each year (according to a Crossing Consolidation Study). The petition cites safety as the reason for the proposed closings along Bain Station Road. Public response to reports of the proposed closings expressed skepticism over the logic.

Union Pacific Railroad operates as a subsidiary of Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP), and is the largest railroad in North America. Union Pacific Railroad has 32,300 miles of railway route across the country and connects to other major transportation systems as well. The company transports freight across the country for a variety of large enterprises and also runs a commuter train operation out of Chicago.

On Monday, August 20, the Village Board adopted a resolution opposing the closing of the railroad crossings along Bain Station Road. The resolution identifies Bain Station Road as an “important transportation alternative” between the two highways. Language in the resolution also refers to the proposed closings as contrary to existing, regional transportation plans. It also highlights uses of the road by municipal departments and citizens, citing access to drainage and floodplain areas adjacent to the WE Energies Pleasant Prairie Power Plant property and citizen access to schools, businesses and government facilities.
In addition to the uses highlighted in the resolution, Bain Station Road is used by the Pleasant Prairie Police Department to save time when responding to calls. The Fire and Rescue Department also uses Bain Station Road to access wildlife areas adjacent to the railroad in the event of fire. Without access through Bain Station Road, it would be difficult for the department to access the land.

Adoption of the resolution by the Village Board authorized the Village Administrator to engage legal representation on behalf of the Village in legal proceedings designed to stop the proposed closures. A similar resolution to the one adopted in Pleasant Prairie was adopted by the Kenosha County Board on Tuesday, August 21 opposing similarly proposed closings in the Town of Somers. Area residents who would like to express their opinions about the petition to close Bain Station Road may email railroadresponse@plprairie.com.

Those without access to email may mail a letter to: Railroad Response, 9915 39th Avenue, Pleasant Prairie, WI 53158.

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