Union Pacific marked its 150th Anniversary Tuesday as part of Utah’s Pioneer Day Celebrations. The railroad company also recognized Salt Lake City with a “Train Town USA” award.
Salt Lake City is now a member of about 100 U.S. communities that make up Union Pacific’s Train Town USA Registry. The registry represents the equivalence of a Hall of Fame for Union Pacific. Other member cities include Chicago, Illinois, Portland, Oregon and Boise, Idaho. Governor Gary Herbert spoke at the event of Union Pacific’s importance to Utah’s economy.
“The fact that they have, by rail, the ability to transport goods in a very economical way is good for the environment, it takes trucks off the road. The railroads have been a big part and even a bigger part of our economy going forward,” he said.
Union Pacific currently has 1400 Utah employees that operate more than 1200 miles of railroad in the state. Bob Turner, Senior Vice President of Corporate Relations for Union Pacific, says the railroad is more relevant to the world than many may think.
“Almost everything in your life, whether it’s the energy for the lights when you turn them on, the vehicles that you drive, the food you eat, the consumer products, the house you live in, some part of that traveled on a train before it got to you,” he said.
Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker was also on hand to accept the city’s award.