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Railnews Review 2022: A Look Back at the Biggest Stories in Railroading

From the end of regular service steam in China to the demise of a beloved western regional, 2022 was a big year in railroad news. Photo by Justin Franz. 

Railnews Review 2022: A Look Back at the Biggest Stories in Railroading

By Railfan & Railroad Staff

‘Tis the season for reflection. In December 2022, the editors of Railfan & Railroad Magazine took a look back at the biggest railroad stories of the year, while also looking ahead to see what railroading will look like in 2023. Enjoy this look back and, if you enjoy what we do, consider subscribing.

Fan Favorites Fall Amid Mergers and Takeovers

In 2021, the biggest story in railroading were the mergers and acquisitions that would change the railroad map in the year to come. Twelve months later, one of those acquisitions has been completed while two more await a likely high green from federal regulators. Because of those transactions, nearly every railfan had at least one of the following on their “must-see” list in 2022: Pan Am Railways, Kansas City Southern and Montana Rail Link. Read more…

Revenue Steam Era Draws to a Close in China

The age of steam in one of its last strongholds came to a close in 2022. On April 25, the Sandaoling Coal Mine Railway — long considered by rail enthusiasts to be the last place on earth to see steam locomotives in regular, revenue freight service — ran its final steam-powered coal train. On May 7, the owner of the railroad began ripping up the track. Read more…

(Motive) Power to the People

Passenger trains across much of the United States and Canada will look very different a decade from now and that shift appears to have begun this year. And more often than not, it was a shift to motive power built by Siemens Mobility, the now dominant passenger locomotive builder in North America. Read more…

Silvis Becomes Rail Preservation’s ‘Shop of Dreams’

No story surprised the rail preservation world quite like the news in January that Railroading Heritage of Midwest America had purchased the former Rock Island shops in Silvis, Ill., with dreams of turning it into the largest historic railroad equipment restoration facility in the country. And if that didn’t get your attention, the story that dropped just three months later did: the newly acquired shop would soon become home to two massive Union Pacific steam locomotives that would be restored to operation. Read more…

BNSF Seligman Sub

Class Is in Crisis

There was plenty of good news in railroading in 2022, from brand-new passenger trains to the launch of a massive new railway preservation effort. But if there was one story that dominated the headlines this year — and not just in enthusiast and trade publications, but mainstream ones, too — it was the struggles of North America’s biggest Class I railroads. Read more…

This article was posted on: December 30, 2022