The CTA Railroad Network is a representation of the North American railroad system that contains every railroad route in the US, Canada, and Mexico that has been active since 1993. It is intended for logical network programming, traffic analyses, and mapping applications. Corporate structure, a key to the simulation of routing, is explicitly temporal, allowing historical studies and comparisons. Supporting data on interlines and corporate ancestry allow the construction of routable networks for a specific target date. The network is an extension of the Federal Railroad Administration's strategic network.
The network is distributed in two versions:
View documentation Description of the CTA Railroad Network (ASCII text 53 KB)
View maps which illustrate network features
Download raw network QN48
|QN48R in native format (9.6 MB)||QN48V in shapefile format (10.1 MB)|
Download current operational network QC48
|QC48R in native format (5.5 MB)||QC48V in shapefile format (7.4 MB)|
data: Interlines, Railroad ancestry, Subdivision list (0.2 MB compressed)
View railroad reporting marks and ancestry only, wconv.txt.
RHA (reformats native ASCII files into GIS formats), RQCFS (constructs the
operational network QC from raw network QN), Arc/Info
Download source and executables in a single zipped file (28 KB)
GIS details: Geographic accuracy is roughly equivalent to a scale of 1:100,000, but is object-specific (see documentation). Comparison to a set of 70,000 FRA inspection car GPS locations showed a lateral offset of 20 m root mean square, so a reasonable estimate of the geographic accuracy of active lines in CONUS would be 25 m RMS. The geographic coordinate system is decimal degrees, datum NAD27. No ESRI PRJ file is included with the shapefiles, but if there were, it would look like this (cut and paste if needed):
shapefile viewers are available on the Web that you can use to make
on-screen maps of this network. Possibilities include:
You will have to install the program and point it to the downloaded shapefiles on your computer.
Contact for questions and corrections: Bruce Peterson, 865-946-1352, PetersonBE@ornl.gov.
CTA Transportation Networks - Home Page