OmniTRAX has agreed to buy Cleveland Commercial Railroad (CCRL) and its wholly owned subsidiary Cleveland Harbor Belt Railroad (CHB) for an undisclosed sum.

CCRL operates more than 56km of track in Northern Ohio, while CHB operates the Port of Cleveland’s rail switching service.

CCRL interchanges with Norfolk Southern and the Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway. It primarily ships steel, scrap metals, grain and chemicals.

As part of the acquisition, CCRL will be rebranded as Cleveland & Cuyahoga Railway while CHB will be known as Cleveland Port Railway.

OmniTRAX CEO Kevin Shuba said: “The acquisition of CCRL and CHB allows us to continue to strengthen the valuable network that makes us such an important partner to our customers and believe our increased presence will have a long-term, positive economic impact for all involved.

“We expect the partnership with the Port of Cleveland will be another example of the success OmniTRAX and its partners have achieved when rail and maritime work together.”

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By GlobalData

OmniTRAX is a private railroad and transportation management company. It offers management services to railroads, ports and intermodal and industrial switching operations.

Port of Cleveland chief commercial officer David Gutheil said: “OmniTRAX has a substantial customer base across their existing network and a history of leveraging their strong partnerships with the Class 1 railroads to increase revenues and find new lines of business.”

Last year, OmniTRAX affiliate HGS Railway acquired the Alabama & Tennessee River Railway (ATN) and the Fulton County Railway (FCR) from CSX.

OmniTRAX has been managing operations on both lines for several years and is expected to continue after the acquisition. The terms of the deal were not revealed.