American Railway Development Association


May 2016
Featured Article
The Use of Funding Agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 
By Kevin Keller, HDR Engineering, Inc., ARDA Past President 2011-12   
Section 214 of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2000, as amended, allows the Secretary of the Army to accept and expend funds contributed by non-federal public entities and public-utility companies to expedite the permit evaluation process. Title 23 U.S.C. Section 139(j) also allows affected Federal agencies, such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to accept and expend funds from certain entities to expedite permit reviews. Section 139(j) also provides that the Secretary of Transportation may approve a request by a state to provide funds to affected federal agencies participating in the environmental review process to support activities that directly and meaningfully contribute to expediting and improving transportation project planning and delivery for projects in that state. USACE issued new implementing guidance for funding agreements within the Regulatory Program in September 2015. The new guidance was written to implement legal changes from Section 1006 of WRDA, as well as clarify policy for funding agreements established under Section 139(j).
Register for the 2016 Annual Meeting Today!
The 2016 Annual Meeting will take place from Sunday evening July 24  to Wednesday morning July 27, 2016 at the Renaissance Las Vegas! Those arriving early will also have the opportunity to participate in our early bird golf tournament at the TPC Las Vegas at 8 AM on the morning of Sunday, July 24. More details on the Annual Meeting schedule can be found here [PDF].

We are looking forward to an Annual Meeting program featuring speakers on topics relating to our 2015-16 theme of "Going Global." More details on our program, schedule, silent auction, registration options and more can be found below or on the ARDA website at Registration for the Annual Meeting will is now open on the ARDA website.
 Attendees interested in booking a room at the special ARDA rate at the Renaissance Las Vegas can do so at this link.


If you have any questions regarding the Annual Meeting please contact Fred Oelsner at or by phone at 202-715-1259.

Panels and Programs at the 2016 Annual Meeting

The 2016 Annual Meeting will feature a variety of different panels and presentations on timely issues within the railroad industry. Our current schedule and program can be found here. These subjects and presenters will include:

  • LiDAR Advancements and Capabilites
    • Doug Morrison (Bartlett & West) will speak on his company's latest advances in utilizing LiDAR technology for rail applications 
  • AAR Regulatory Update
    • Featuring Robert Fronczak (AAR) to speak on recent developments in regulations within the rail industry
  • Lessons Learned from Site Development Projects
    • Featuring Quin Vincent (VAA) to offer a customer perspective, and Mike Ray (BNSF) to offer insights from the railroad side of site development projects
  • Unmanned Aerial Systems Panel
    • Mike Mischke (BNSF) will speak on BNSF's internal and FAA Pathfinder program work with drones
  • Rails-to-Trails Panel
    • Featuring Matt Coffing (CSX) and Liz Thorstensen (Rails-to-Trails Conservency) speaking on rails-to-trails development, collaboration with railroads and case studies
  • Eminent Domain Panel
    • Featuring Kevin Baldwin (Daley Mohan Groble) and Michael Wallenstein (Pillsbury) speaking on issues surrounding railroads defense against eminent domain claims
  • Marketing Industrial Development Sites
    • Featuring Stephanie Lane (CSX) and Lacy Kreger (BNSF) speaking on their railroads' certification and selection of sites for Industrial Development
  • Potential for Railway Development in Cuba
  • Utility Crossing Roundtable
    • A continuation from discussions at previous ARDA events in Miami and Denver on utility crossings of railroad right-of-ways
Keep an eye on the Annual Meeting information page (here) for more updates on topics to be presented in Las Vegas! 
ARDA Sponsorship Opportunities
ARDA offers companies the opportunity to sponsor specific meeting functions or become a general association sponsor. Multiple levels of General Sponsorship are available for your consideration - corporate commitments greater than $1,000 include complimentary individual memberships in ARDA.

To sponsor the 2016 ARDA Annual Meeting please contact Fred Oelsner at or 202-715-1259 .

 Annual Meeting Sponsorships
Welcome Reception
Individual Program Sessions (8 in Total)
$500 per session
Spouse/Guest Coffee and Meet-up
Breaks (4 in Total)
$1,000 per break
Continental Breakfasts
$1,500 per breakfast
Lunch Periods
$1,500 per lunch
Hospitality Suite and Silent Auction
$1,000 per day
Happy Hour at Peppermill's
President's Reception
President's Dinner


General ARDA Sponsorships for 2015-16 are also available.  Please visit our website to learn more about the different levels of ARDA Sponsorships.

Annual ARDA Sponsorships
Bronze Level
$500 - $1,999
Silver Level
$2,000 - $4,999
Gold Level
$5,000 -  $7,499
Platinum Level
2015-16 Membership Renewals

If you have not yet renewed your ARDA membership for 2015-2016, please visit our website at and log-in at the top right corner of the page. 

Your renewed membership allows ARDA to continue fostering the industrial, real estate, natural resources, market development activities and environmental concerns of the North American railroads through the advancement of ideas and education of its members. Members also discounted registration rates at ARDA rates, including a $200 discount on the Annual Meeting!

If you are not an ARDA member and would like to join, please visit our registration page.


For more information, visit the ARDA website  or contact: 

ARDA staff at
The  American Railway Development Association  (ARDA) is a not-for-profit educational trade association founded in 1906 to promote Economic Development, Real Estate Development, Technology, and Environmental Activities of the North American Railroads. 
The objectives of the Association are to foster the industrial, real estate, natural resources, market development activities and environmental concerns of the North  American railroads; and through the advancement of ideas and education of its members, further promote the effectiveness of railway development and related work .
Featured Article
Register for AM 2016
Panels and Programs at AM 2016
Membership Renewals
Thank You ARDA 2015 - 16 Sponsors!

Bartlett & West
Kansas City Southern
Norfolk Southern Corp.


Florida East Coast Railway
GEI Consultants
Herzog Contracting Corp.
IMGRail Consulting


LJA Engineering, Inc.

Join Our Mailing List

New Members since February

Jesse Chalich
Northern Plains Railroad

John Dietrich
Business Development
Larson Engineering, Inc.

Ann Kennedy
Ann E. Kennedy Law, PLLC

Marina-Alex Nelson
Rail Services Manager
Larson Engineering, Inc.

Marc Schrader
Director of Marketing
Bartlett & West, Inc. 

James Turchich
Vice President
The Philadelphia Belt Line RR Co.
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