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 5,189 miles of track and employ 5,774 in the Keystone State.* It would have taken approximately 11.2 million additional truckloads to move the 202.5 million tons of freight that moved by rail in Pennsylvania in 2019. 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.

*2019 data

Rail at Work


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Featured Rail Advocates

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

Featured Rail Supply Companies


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Rail Management Services
Professional Transportation, Inc.
IAT International, Inc.
Wabtec Corporation
TTX Company
Stella-Jones Inc.
Standard Steel, LLC
RJ Corman Railroad Group
Progress Rail Services
L.B. Foster Company
Koppers Inc.
Hulcher Services Inc.
ArcelorMittal Steelton


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.