The P&W had also acquired the ex-BN Oregon Electric trackage from Tigard, through Wilsonville to near Kaiser.In 2002, PNWR leased the remaining BN ex-Oregon Electric trackage from Salem, south to Eugene.The two Oregon railroads have been kept separate under two different corporations and continue to technically operate as two separate railroads even today.
Today the PWNR lines are thriving and rather than being abandoned, they remain open for local businesses to use and prosper as well as for rail fans of all ages to admire and enjoy.
Note to readers: Because of the extensive information and photos contained on this and other P&W related pages in addition to future photos and info that will be added at a later date, the page will eventually be broken down into several different pages.
Today, total mileage, including trackage rights over operational Union Pacific and BNSF mainlines is over 523 miles.
The PNWR serves at least 135 customers and rail shipments have increased and improved since the days when the Southern Pacific and BNSF operated these lines.
The Willamette & Pacific name and logo can still be found on a number of locomotives, buildings, equipment and documents, however.
The Willamette and Pacific was initially incorporated in 1993 to lease about 185 miles of track from the Southern Pacific, who was anxious to get out from under the low traffic volume area.
On August 18, 1995, Genesee and Wyoming Inc, created a second Oregon railroad company, called the Portland and Western.
The P&W leased the last 53 miles of Southern Pacific branch lines that had not been sold or abandoned.
The bridges and tunnels are actually also owned by the State, but maintained by the P&W.
In July, 1997, the P&W purchased the track and equipment of the Astoria branch from Burlington Northern.
Just like the Cornelius Pass branch, the land is owned by the state, but the trackage, excluding bridges, is owned and operated by the Portland & Western.