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City of Prineville, Les Schwab reach agreement

Deal will mean additional revenue for city railway
Les Schwab has come to an agreement with the City of Prineville in regards to using the Prineville Railway as a means of transporting tires by rail car from Redmond to Prineville.
   Once the rail cars arrive in Prineville, Les Schwab will then transfer the tires from the rail cars to their trucks, then transport the tires to their Prineville distribution center.
   "This will help breathe life into the railway," said Prineville City Manager Robb Corbett.
   The agreement between Les Schwab and the City of Prineville Railway comes on the heels of the City of Prineville's decision to purchase the Crooked River Dinner Train. The Dinner Train was purchased in the hopes it, along with the deals between Les Schwab and Louisiana Pacific, will help by eventually putting the City of Prineville's Railway in the black for the first time in years.
   "Consistent and affordable freight rail service is critical to our local businesses and our economy. A utilized freight rail service has been a missing link in our effort to grow our economy. Freight rail service ensures that businesses like Les Schwab will have easier and more efficient access to Prineville, and will help keep the city-owned railroad in a good financial position. Continued usage promises to be a win-win situation for the community," said Corbett in a press release earlier this week.
   "We are piloting this transportation arrangement and evaluating its operational efficiencies," said Richard Borgman, Senior Executive Vice President, Les Schwab Tire Centers. "We are hopeful we can realize these efficiencies, which will enable us to further improve customer service."
   According to the press release dated Dec. 20, the City of Prineville has been working with the Oregon Department of Transportation's Rail Division, the Burlington Northern and Union Pacific railroads, and businesses like Les Schwab to ensure more consistent freight rail service to Prineville. The existence of a vibrant railroad allows businesses like Les Schwab to be more efficient in their operations and provides economic benefits to the city.
   Currently, Les Schwab's tires are taken by rail to Redmond, at which point the company transports them by truck to their distribution center in Prineville.