By Letterkenny Army Depot Public AffairsJune 18, 2007
Col. Robert A. Swenson presided over a brief ceremony late today that dedicated a heavy rail dock behind the fence in a secure area of the depot. He was joined in the ribbon-cutting ceremony by Congressman Bill Shuster (9 - PA); Pennsylvania Senator Terry Punt (33rd-PA) and Gen. Benjamin S. Griffin, U.S. Army Materiel Command commanding general. In July, 2005, Franklin County Area Development Corporation recommended that the Secretary of the Army accept an unsolicited gift to construct and donate a heavy rail dock to the US Army at Letterkenny Army Depot. FCADC obtained funds through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. The dock was accepted by the Secretary of the Army April 4, 2006. The prime contractor was MSJS, Inc., Landisville, Pa. The dock is now the property of the U.S. Army, having been completed in Spring 2007. The cost was approximately $300,000. The dock itself was designed to support a 65-ton vehicle load equivalent to a self-propelled howitzer or Bradley tank. About one-third of the cost paid for over 600 feet of new rail bed and rail siding to access the dock along with a connecting switch, plus site work to prepare the site, grading and drainage to route water away plus a stabilized stone base to provide access to the dock. Letterkenny previously owned a heavy rail dock, but it was located in an area of the depot that was declared excess in the Base Realignment and Closure law of 1995 and transferred to the Local Reuse Authority. This new heavy rail dock now permits rapid movement of heavy vehicles from LEAD onto railcars destined for ports on the Eastern Seaboard. LEAD has also been designated the inland node storage site for the Port of Philadelphia and this dock supports and facilitates loading/off-loading military vehicles and equipment coming to LEAD for maintenance.