Watco Companies, LLC, (Watco) under a
newly formed subsidiary Elwood Joliet & Southern Railroad (EJSR), LLC, has acquired a
former Railway & Industrial Services, Inc. (RIS) property in Crest Hill, Illinois, near Joliet,
Illinois, and leased an adjoining rail line that serves RIS and several other local customers from
Wisconsin Central Ltd. (CN). Watco plans to repurpose the property, formerly a mechanical
repair shop, into a storage and transit (SIT) yard and provide switching services to the new
facility and the adjacent customers.
Watco will be investing in infrastructure upgrades to the property, which will be an important
asset to area companies, primarily in the plastic and chemical industries. The 39-acre yard near
Joliet will serve customers needing forward storage of crucial plastic, chemical, and other bulk
inventory and effective access to the extensive Chicago rail network.
Stefan Loeb, Watco Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer said, “Watco is
excited to provide a new service solution that will benefit both industries and consumers in the
Midwest. Construction will soon start on the SIT yard, and we look forward to providing
important storage capacity to the market soon. Watco is also very excited to earn the right to
serve and create mutual value with the important customers and Wisconsin Central Ltd. (CN) on
the rail line.”
On September 24, 2020, Watco Transportation Services. LLC filed a petition with the Surface
Transportation Board (STB) to lease and operate a Wisconsin Central Ltd. (CN), rail line known
as the Phoenix Line. The line will be known as the Elwood Joliet & Southern Railroad, LLC
(EJSR). The railroad will serve current customers along the line and the new customers who will
be utilizing the SIT yard. Operations will begin on the line pending STB approval.
-via Press Release