Pennsylvania: Keystone of American Freight Rail

From a small beginning two centuries ago with a quarry railway in Delaware County, freight rail became the engine that made Pennsylvania an industrial giant in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today’s freight railroads continue fueling economic growth, drawing new businesses and manufacturing to Pennsylvania with their seamless connections to national and global markets.

Pennsylvania's 61 freight railroads operate over 5,228 miles of track and employ 4,528 in the Keystone State.* It would have taken approximately 2.8 million additional truckloads to move the 50 million tons of freight that moved by rail in Pennsylvania in 2021. Moving freight by rail prevented 4.63 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of taking 907,000 cars off the road or planting 70.1 million trees. Intermodal and coal make up the majority of freight rail shipments both beginning and ending in Pennsylvania.

*2021 data

Rail at Work


See All

Featured Rail Advocates

Gene Barr
Gene Barr
President & CEO, Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry

Featured Rail Supply Companies


See All
RMS Intermodal
The Greenbrier Companies
Gregori Construction
Direct Chassis Link
Hitachi Rail STS USA, Inc.
Wabtec Corporation
TTX Company
Stella-Jones Inc.
RJ Corman Railroad Group
Progress Rail Services
L.B. Foster Company
Koppers Inc.
Hulcher Services Inc.


44 percent

in rail rates on average from 1981 to today.

That means the average rail customer today can ship significantly more freight for about the same price they paid 40 years ago. 

State Director

Michael Gaynor

Michael Gaynor

Assistant Vice President, Field Operations

Michael Gaynor manages the field staff and operations for GoRail.