Unlike trucks, barges, and airlines in the U.S., freight railroads do not strain the public purse. Privately owned railroads have spent $550 billion since 1980 building, maintaining and growing their 140,000-mile rail network. That amount equals 40 cents of every revenue dollar. Even during the economic downturn, America’s freight railroads spent approximately $25 billion annually to build and maintain the most efficient rail system in the world. In 2014, that investment is expected to increase to an estimated $26 billion, helping to keep America competitive.