IRS and Railway Engineering-Maintenance Suppliers Association (REMSA) hosted Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL-5) for a tour of the new Elmhurst facility and a public policy discussion centered on priorities for greater Chicago’s manufacturing and rail communities on April 10, 2017.
The Railway Engineering-Maintenance and Suppliers Association (REMSA), a non-profit trade group representing over 340 railway engineers, contractors, consultants, and suppliers across the country, coordinated the event. The $5 billion maintenance of way industry supports over 35,000 jobs nationwide. Thirty REMSA members maintain operations in Illinois.
Our president, Scott Commo, led the tour who is also a REMSA Director. Also in attendance were Jim Kvedaras, Director, U.S. Government Affairs, Canadian National Railway Company; Bill O’Connor, Chairman & CEO, Railway Supply Group; Liisa Stark, Assistant Vice President – Public Affairs, Union Pacific Railroad; Emily Traiforos, Field Director, GoRail; Marc Trani, Chief Operating Officer, Railway Supply Group; and Sean Winkler, Director of Advocacy, REMSA.
“We are honored to host Congressman Quigley, a leader on transportation issues affecting the Chicago region, and demonstrate our commitment to growing our business in Elmhurst,” said Commo. “Railroads invest tens of billions of dollars annually into their networks, supporting rail supply jobs across our country. It is critical our policy makers do not upset the delicate regulatory balance that enables this sustained private investment possible. We thank the Congressman for his continued support of Chicago’s rail community.”
Congressman Quigley is a leading voice for Chicago and a key supporter of the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) Program, which is investing billions to support critical infrastructure projects needed to improve Chicago’s rail efficiencies. As a member of the House Appropriations’ THUD Subcommittee, he has fought for increased funding for the Transportation Investment Generation Economic Recovery (TIGER) discretionary grant program, a competitive and innovative funding mechanism for critical infrastructure projects across the United States. (www.quigley.gov)
“It was a pleasure to participate in today’s tour of IRS’s new facility and to learn more about their strong commitment to growing their business in our area,” said Rep. Quigley. “I look forward to continuing to engage with all stakeholders so we can create jobs, grow our local economy and ensure our communities are safely and efficiently served by freight and passenger rail service alike.”
The group discussed the private nature of America’s freight railroad network, which does not rely on federal support for the expansion or maintenance of its right-of-way unlike other modes of freight transportation. Also discussed was the recent bipartisan and bicameral introduction of the Building Rail Access for Customers and the Economy (BRACE) Act which is cosponsored by Rep. Quigley.
In Illinois, approximately 40 freight railroads operate and maintain over 6,900 miles of track and support over 13,000 jobs.
About Railway Supply Group
IRS is a part of Railway Supply Group, a diverse family of railway equipment supply companies that have served the railway industry for well over a half of century. We relocated headquarters in 2016 to a large, state of the art facility and have positioned the companies for future growth. We made a large investment and are great partners to grow with or purchase from. As a viable player in the railroad industry, IRS stocks and distributes key products that make railroads more efficient, safer and enhance productivity. The other companies under the Railway Supply Group umbrella include:
Unity Railway Supply Co., Inc., is the leading stocking distributor for a distinguished group of established manufacturers of freight car components. Our unique capabilities allow us to enhance the supply chain for railroads, new car builders and repair shops throughout North America and around the world.
We are extremely proud of the relationships we’ve built with our customers through exceptional service and performance. At Unity, we have an outstanding group of professionals with a keen understanding of our industry. That is why we are able to offer a diverse combination of both traditional and innovative railcar and locomotive products, delivered on-time at competitive prices.
IRECO, LLC is a premier engineered railway products company providing freight car components for railcar manufacturers, railroads and repair shops throughout North America.
IRECO was founded in 1929 as Illinois Railway Equipment Company. Our foremost goal was to deliver engineered solutions for common issues plaguing railcar operation. Rebranded as IRECO, LLC in 1983, our focus remains the same to this day.
IRECO combines the same industry knowledge, continuous improvement initiatives and innovative engineering concepts that allowed us to be a pioneer in freight car specialty products for over 85 years. IRECO has been granted over 300 patents and are constantly investigating new and inventive ways to transform freight rail transportation. IRECO is proud to have achieved the TTX Excellent Supplier Award for 23 consecutive years, recognizing superior customer service, product quality, performance, value, and delivery.
Davanac Inc. offers a wide selection of maintenance of way products, freight car and locomotive parts for the railway industry along with a variety of abrasive products for both the railway and industrial sectors. Our commitment is to provide quality and approved products matched with reliable and knowledgeable sales and service. Davanac’s roots date back to 1921 when the W.K. Davidson Co. was founded as a railway supplier. The Davanac name first appeared in 1969 with the merger of W.K. Davidson Company and Adanac Co. Unity Railway Supply Co. acquired Davanac in 1976. Davanac operates in two Canadian locations: Montreal, QC band Calgary, Alberta.