Union Pacific Acquires Fontana MHX Transportation Services Operation For $75 Million

The Union Pacific Railroad Company has purchased outright the MHX transportation services operation, which lies within the shadow of what was the Auto Club Speedway, it was announced last week.

Union Pacific, last spring, made the acquisition for a reported $75 million in the immediate aftermath, of Ross Perot Jr., Dallas-based Hillwood Development Company and Coldwell Banker Richard Ellis Investment Management acquiring the 433-acre speedway property with the intention of turning it into a logistics center.

The MHX property, located at 13600 Napa Street, spans 118,984 square feet, or just under 2.73 acres. It contains a warehouse/industrial complex where highly involved operations for the maintenance and perpetuation of logistics and transportation activity takes place.
That activity includes handling various types of railcars as well as conveying large volumes of heavy commodities, including steel, lumber, pipe, aluminum, zinc, liquid bulk, dry bulk, food grade, and finished goods.
MHX previously had 10 facilities which, according to corporate statements, “partnered with dedicated carriers to transport material from California to Mexico” and had “the ability to handle all commodities moved through rail distribution in the Inland Empire, Los Angeles, and Stockton.”

Its in-house transportation services involved a large flatbed truck fleet with ability to handle various commodities safely through local distribution in Southern California and Northern California along with state wide trucking, a liquid tank fleet in Southern California and what the company termed a “light weight tractor trailer combination” with fleet load weight ranges from 48,000 pound to 56,000 pound gross load weight.
The company, operating from different sites in coordination with the Fontana site also provided port services, extending to container movement, devanning of heavy weight and standard weight containers and access to direct movement off of various break bulk terminals in Port of Long Beach/Los Angeles and Port of Stockton locations.
In particular, MHX specialized in heavy weight container drayage and warehousing. Drayage is the transfer of shipborne containers to rail carriers or trucks or vice-versa for delivery to an ultimate or penultimate destination. As such, MHX has experience in import and export involving movements out of the Port of Los Angeles/Long Beach in the heavy weight corridor.
In making the purchase, which involved Jim Vena, the chairman and chief executive officer of the Union Pacific Railroad and the Vincent McLeod III, representing the sellers, Budway Enterprises and MHX, Union Pacific paid $630 per square foot for the property.

The facility is to remain as a transload facility. Despite the sale taking place nearly 11 months ago, it was not made public until recently. It is unclear whether the personnel who previously were employed at the facility by MHX are to be transitioned into similar positions with Union Pacific. Under its MHX incarnation, the facility serviced trains operated by both Union Pacific and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad.

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