Can you dig it?

How many trains make the daily chug through Reno? That’s still debatable. Mike Tracy, a former Reno City Council candidate, said he disputes the number of 17 to 19 trains per day that Reno officials have been stating at recent workshops on ReTRAC, the proposed train trench project.

Tracy, in a recent e-mail, quoted a Union Pacific Railroad “Trains Per Day Volume Map” that puts the number of daily trains between Roseville, Calif., and Reno at 12.

“It is important that the citizens of Washoe County, especially the residents of Reno, are informed with facts, not ReTRAC fiction,” he said.

For years, Reno Mayor Jeff Griffin and other city officials have said the Port of Oakland expansion will increase the rail traffic to as many as 50 trains per day.

UPRR officials have denied the city’s assertion that the expansion will significantly increase rail traffic—noting that ports in Los Angeles and Seattle would likely handle increased ship traffic to the West Coast. UP has also said 24 trains is the maximum rail traffic on its Reno line.

Reno Public Works Director Steve Varela told the RN&R in December that the city was coming up with the higher figures and that UP doesn’t want to admit to increased rail traffic because of possible mitigation costs. The Reno City Council makes its final call on the trench at its Feb. 27 meeting.