America has always been about building things.

From erecting the world’s first skyscrapers to constructing the suburbs that opened up home ownership to millions, America continues to build today in order to create a more prosperous tomorrow.

U.S. freight railroads play a critical role in the nation’s ability to build. In 2016 alone, railroads transported approximately 181,000 carloads of cement, 763,500 carloads of crushed and broken stone, 306,260 carloads of lumber and wood products and 440,760 carloads of construction steel.

For residential and commercial construction, railroads transport a variety of building materials, including steel, stone, non‐metallic minerals, wood products and plastics. And at the end of the residential construction process, a newly built dwelling is filled with durable consumer goods such as household appliances — carried by trail.


Current Stats: In 2016, U.S. Class I railroads moved 540,000 carloads of construction materials (1.95 % of total carloads), carrying 48.4 million tons (3.2 % of total tons) and earning gross revenue of $2.2 billion (3.4 % of total revenue).

Economic Impact: Freight rail generated approximately $24.6 billion in economic output through construction materials in 2014 alone and directly supported more than 25,500 jobs related to that industry.

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