A&K Railroad Materials Inc. of Salt Lake City has received contracts to dismantle and dispose of more than 180 miles of excess railroad tracks from the Southern Pacific and Union Pacific railroads.

The SP contract involves 55 miles of track in the Sacramento Division and 117 miles of track in the Los Angeles Division, said Morris Kulmer, A&K president. The UP contract calls for removing 11.6 miles of track in the Ogden switching yard.The two contracts include removing more than 17 miles of track west of Union Station in Ogden and the Ogden switching yard under the 24th Street viaduct.

The contract with SP also includes removal of excess sidings along the SP right-of-way from Sacramento to Ogden. Crews are removing sidings near Lake Point as they work toward the Ogden switching yard.

A&K will remove, sort, grade and dispose of all salvaged materials in Utah and California. Most of the items removed from the Ogden and western Utah phases of the salvage operation will be disposed of in Utah, Kulmer said.

Steel items will be reused by various railroads or will be recycled by steel mills and foundries. Railroad ties will be sold to the public for fence posts, retaining walls or other landscape uses.

Byron Bateman, A&K vice president of operations, said this large-scale railroad salvage operation is equivalent in scope to removing the Marysvale branch of the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad line in central Utah. In 1983 a landslide blocked the Spanish Fork River and the resultant lake damaged the northern section of the line and it was sold for salvage.