What do you do when the rail line you use to ship your product shuts down on you? Well, if you are Larry Venell of Corvalis, Oregon, you buy that line and add ‘Railroad Owner’ to your résumé.
After the Portland & Western (PNWR) halted service on the Bailey Branch, also referred to as the Monroe-Dawson line, Larry Venell spent 2 years attempting to purchase the line. Now, following a $750, 000 repair project on his purchase, a 5.35-mile stretch of the line running from milepost 682.25 near Greenberry to milepost 687.6 near Corvalis, the Venell Farms Railroad Company (VFRC) made its first wheat shipment on their own line on August 6th 2010.
Venell Farms’ loads are hauled by Albany & Eastern (AERC) a shortline based in Lebanon, Oregon.