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Luncheon: Frank Patton, Chairman - Great Lakes Basin Transportation
Founder, Managing Partner
Great Lakes Basin Transportation
“Chicago has been made largely by the railroads, and its future prosperity is dependent upon them.”
—Daniel Burnham, Plan of Chicago (1909)
Frank, founded Great Lakes Basin in 2011 and is the Managing Partner. His initial goal is to develop a new railroad connecting the six Class 1 railroads around Chicago. Frank is a graduate of the University of Iowa, and a Past President of the Union League Club of Chicago. Frank founded, owned and managed Portfolio Dynamics, a portfolio development software company during the years 1970 - 2002
The Chicago rail terminal is the largest and most complex in the United States, and not just for carload traffic. In terms of sheer volume, Chicago would qualify as the third-largest container port in the world. The fundamental need for GLBT’s proposed rail line arises out of the limited capacity at this already-congested rail hub.
Chicago is the preferred interchange point for much of the freight traffic carried by the six Class 1 railroads serving the city, with about 500 freight trains operating in the area on an average weekday. A substantial fraction of that traffic—estimated at 15 to 25%—does not originate or terminate in Chicago. Today, that traffic has to fight its way through a crowded terminal area that also hosts about 700 Metra and Amtrak passenger trains every weekday. To make matters more difficult, Chicago’s physical plant, although well-maintained, has not changed significantly in over a century.
The purpose of the GLBR project is to construct and operate a safe, reliable, and entirely new freight rail bypass around Chicago that would link existing main lines entering the Chicago area, permit trains to bypass the congested terminal area, and add capacity to accommodate existing and reasonably anticipated future growth—all while avoiding major population centers along its route.
Tuesday, September 26, 2017, 12:10 PM until 1:20 PM
The Union League Club has a dress code policy, strictly enforced, of business or business casual. No jeans, tennis shoes or other casual attire. Overcoats must be checked upon arrival in the building lobby.