Event archive

Event Organiser: Railway Civil Engineers’ Association

USA Railways today – The way forward?, London

  • Lecture
  • London
  • 30 May 2019
  • 18:00 - 19:30
USA Railways today – The way forward?, London

About this event

John Dolan will discuss the context in which United States Railroads operate, including the roles of the three Federal Government oversight bodies. He will describe the range of operators, the infrastructure context, including examples of the speed of response to incidents, and the largest planned infrastructure project in the USA (one element $12.9 billion).

John will review issues relating to Amtrak (Federal passenger train operator) and give those attending the opportunity to “play the President” and decide how Amtrak’s Federal funds could be used. He will conclude by illustrating some interesting infrastructure aspects, including accessibility.


John Dolan

Principal Consultant, Ricardo Rail

John Dolan

John’s interest in US railways was triggered by his role as an Expert Witness. An American insurance company had leased European rail infrastructure and rolling stock assets for income streams, similar to the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Fund and High Speed 1 in this country. However, the American company contracted operation of the assets to state companies.

The US Internal Revenue challenged the basis of the leases and contracts, and the tax position claimed by the American company.

Based on European railway examples, John provided Expert Witness Reports on asset management and operation, on the market for infrastructure maintenance and operation, and on open access. He successfully sustained cross-examination in a US Federal Court. As the US Internal Revenue expert’s statement cut across John’s understanding of the US railway industry, he researched the equivalent US railway context and Federal oversight arrangements. This research was used by the American company lawyers to challenge the US Internal Revenue expert – with success; their expert is a metro, not railway, expert.

Event venue

Institution of Civil Engineers
One Great George Street
London SW1P 3AA
United Kingdom

For more information please contact:

Sach Sandhu

e: [email protected].uk