Conrail Logo Railroad Train Mini Tote Bag
Conrail Safety and Service, Perfect Together
Primary Class I railroad in the Northeast U.S. between 1976 and 1999.
The Consolidated Rail Corporation, commonly known as Conrail was the primary Class I railroad in the Northeast U.S. between 1976 and 1999. The federal government created it to take over the potentially profitable train lines of bankrupt carriers, including the Penn Central Railroad Company, Reading Railroad, and Erie Lackawanna Railway. With the benefit of regulatory changes, Conrail began to turn a profit in the 1980s and was turned over to private investors and railroads in 1987
The two remaining Class I railroads in the East, CSX Railroad Transportation and the Norfolk Southern Railway (NS), agreed in 1997 to split the system approximately equally, returning rail freight competition to the Northeast by essentially undoing the 1968 merger of the Pennsylvania Railroad and New York Central Railroad that created Penn Central. Following Surface Transportation Board approval, CSX and NS took control in August 1998, and on June 1, 1999, began operating their portions of Conrail.