Kansas City Southern (KCS) has broken ground on both sides of the new International Railroad Bridge that will run spanning Rio Grande river from Laredo in the US state of Texas, to Nuevo Laredo in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas.

Expected to complete by the end of 2024, this new bridge will be built alongside the current bridge.

KCS president and CEO Patrick J. Ottensmeyer said: “This marks the start of construction of a new railroad bridge to meet the needs of North American commerce in the future. Upon completion, the second span of the International Bridge will keep Laredo-Nuevo Laredo at the center of North American trade and make this vital USMCA trade corridor safer, more fluid and secure, and relieve traffic congestion in Laredo and Nuevo Laredo.

“This significant private investment in infrastructure, along with the proposed combination of Canadian Pacific and KCS, pending regulatory approval, will connect customers on both sides of the border to new markets, enhance competition in the U.S. rail network and drive economic growth across North America.”

This project includes construction of a structure that is completely paid with private KCS funds.

It will be built on the right-of-way, about 35ft from the current bridge, thereby enabling trains to run in both directions simultaneously.

This international bridge will be approximately 1,150ft long.

Construction teams from the US and Mexican will work simultaneously on both sides of the border to complete the project.

The project will see the current US Department of Homeland Security/Customs and Border Protection building in Laredo being renovated along with the reconstruction of KCS Operations Security Building located in Nuevo Laredo.

The current single-track bridge is the only railroad bridge crossing of the river, connecting Laredo and Nuevo Laredo.

US Presidential permit was given for the construction of the new single -track span bridge in July 2020.
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Image: International Railway Bridge at Laredo in Texas. Credit: AMAPO via commons.wikimedia.org.