The former DURA North building, in which production ceased just over a year ago, could become a little easier to market in the future. George Walley, executive director of the Northeast Missouri Economic Development Council, recently told that board that Norfolk and Western Railroad has acknowledged that it is feasible to build a railroad spur to the building.


The former DURA North building, in which production ceased just over a year ago, could become a little easier to market in the future. George Walley, executive director of the Northeast Missouri Economic Development Council, recently told that board that Norfolk and Western Railroad has acknowledged that it is feasible to build a railroad spur to the building.
“That’s an important detail because more consultants with projects are looking for buildings with rail connections,” said Walley. “It makes the building more marketable.”
The DURA North building will now be listed as one that could have a railroad connection in the state’s data base of available industrial sites.
“We’ll be one of the few that pops up (on the data base) in Northeast Missouri,” said Walley. “You can’t check having rail access lightly. You need to determine it for sure.” 
In December, Walley worked with a railroad specialist from the Missouri Department of Economic Development to take photos and measurements of the area that were used to determine if such a project was feasible from an engineering standpoint.
It was not a slam dunk that the railroad would consent to seeing a spur built to service the building.
“The building sits near a curve (in the tracks) and typically they will not put a switch on a curve,” said Walley. “Some sections of rails are so congested that a railroad won’t allow a spur to be built. We’re trying to be proactive.”
If such a project is undertaken the railroad is not committed to contribute financially, according to Walley.
“They could contribute zero dollars to $1 million,” he said.
One possible way to fund such a project is through a federal grant, which Walley noted was utilized when General Mills expanded a few years ago because of the jobs it was expected to create.