View Full Version : St. Louis F's / Cars to KCS

02-16-2006, 01:36 PM
The following might be of interst.

KCS buys historic locomotives, rail cars

Kansas City Southern has bought four vintage F-unit locomotives and eight passenger rail cars that will bolster its historically accurate passenger service for dignitaries and business associates.

The Kansas City-based railroad (NYSE: KSU) bought the vintage locomotives and rail cars for an undisclosed amount from the St. Louis Car Co., KCS spokeswoman Doniele Kane said Monday.

"Minor modifications will be made to this equipment, which will augment the existing Southern Belle business train fleet," Kane said.

The Southern Belle provides passenger service for dignitaries and KCS business associates on special trips throughout the railroad company's U.S. and Mexican rail network. Part of the new equipment will be based in Monterrey, Mexico, Kane said.

The Southern Belle traces its roots to 1940, when three original Southern Belle trains were built for KCS. They provided luxury travel between Kansas City and the New Orleans/Gulf Coast region for the next 29 years, before automobiles and airplanes forced KCS's passenger rail service into retirement, according to the company's Web page.

Today, the restored vintage trains are used for special trips.

The St. Louis Car Co. has been doing business as RailCruise America, a collection of touring trains that run out of Union Station in St. Louis, said principal Ed Boyce. Boyce is an entrepreneur best known as the creator and chairman of Innsbrook, a weekend vacation getaway 45 minutes west of St. Louis that has burgeoned into a resort, a conference center and now a thriving residential community that spreads across 7,000 acres.

Boyce previously told the Kansas City Business Journal's sister publication in St. Louis that the passenger line never was a money-making venture, though it did break even some years. In an interview Monday, Boyce said he decided his passenger train business had reached the end of the line.

"It's time to take our railroad pension," Boyce quipped. "I'd run it for 20 years. It was just time. The passenger railroad business is something that belongs in the dustbin of history."

Boyce said that buying and selling railroad equipment has been "a sideline" business of his for 30 years. He said he worked for 20 years to buy and modernize the equipment that he sold to KCS.

The locomotives and rail cars originally were Union Pacific equipment that dates to the 1950s and includes wood-panel interiors, Boyce said

"That was a very fine train set," he said. "The train was a labor of love. It was well-respected, and people loved the experiences. And it now it has found a good home in Kansas City."

KCS ranks No. 15 on the Kansas City Business Journal's list of area public companies. - Chris Grenz, The Kansas City Business Journal

02-16-2006, 01:44 PM
Here are some nice pictures of it heading across Missouri on the KCS 2-11-2006.