America’s private freight railroads operate the safest, most efficient, cost-effective, and environmentally sound freight transportation system in the world — and the Association of American Railroads (AAR) is committed to keeping it that way. Founded in 1934, AAR is the world’s leading railroad policy, research, standard setting, and technology organization that focuses on the safety and productivity of the U.S. freight rail industry. AAR Full members include the major freight railroads in the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as Amtrak. Affiliates and Associates include non-Class I and commuter railroads, rail supply companies, engineering firms, signal and communications firms, and rail car owners.
Private investment is at the core of all that the industry does to run a 140,000-mile network. In the last three years, Class I railroads have averaged $25 billion in annual investments to maintain and upgrade infrastructure and equipment.
Because of these investments, we help American businesses from counties across the nation compete and thrive. In 2017, Class I railroads created nearly $26 billion in total tax revenues – money that helps fill the coffers of local governments.
We understand that our community presence is felt positively, and sometimes with tension. That is why the AAR is proud to support the work of NACo and is working to strengthen ties with localities and their leaders across the country. Issues like grade crossing safety can always be improved, and we think working together to solve those issues is paramount.