Abandoned lines - what would look good on today's map?

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Abandoned lines - what would look good on today's map?

  • Definitely, almost the entire E and EL routes were dumped by CR but not abandoned because they knew how often there were much better the grades and clearances,  ability to avoid major yard and traffic gridlock situations,.  These routes were held, even with feint attempts to run trains, just so competition would not be effected.  LV, DL&W, E, CNJ, all had properties which threatened the mojo of PRR and NYC and were therefore dismissed but not dismantled by CR...well, the NJ Cut Off was dismantled, the DL&W from Binghamton to Scranton sold to the D&H,  the LV dismantled across NY and stubbed out in northern PA.  CR also did it to their own: the NYC from Corning, NY to Newberry yard/Williamsport, for instance.  In addition to the lines loss to overhead moves, a lot of local industries were forced out of business and towns decimated by the actions of CR...but CR was a success, so?

    RIDEWITHMEHENRY will plan and escort railfan rides in and around the NY Metropolitan and Philadephia areas: no mode of transportation is untouched. Guaranteed railfan fun!

  • I understand that around or about 1961, CN was toying with the idea of purchasing the Lehigh Valley from the then-controlling PRR.

    Kind of a shame that they did not follow through with this.

  • Just thought of another one--the old CNW cutoff between Nelson and Nachusa, Illinois, could eliminate or reduce the ruling grade for eastbound coal trains coming out of the Rock River valley.

    Carl

    Railroader Emeritus (practiced railroading for 46 years--and in 2010 I finally got it right!)

    CAACSCOCOM--I don't want to behave improperly, so I just won't behave at all. (SM)

  • MP173

    Fred Frailey's excellent blog on the Frisco line to Avard discusses how BNSF is investing big $$$ to install CTC on a line which at one time was considered for abandonment.  It is now a key route in the important Memphis - West Coast intermodal business. 

    The discussion of the Rock Island Memphis - Amarillo line was pointed out as a shorter route (100 miles) yet that line was abandoned in the 1980s as there were no buyers at the "everything must go" sale.

    What looks promising on a map frequently lacks credibility when all factors are considered. The Memphis-Amarillo ( and on to Tucumcari) line had many shortcomings for Santa Fe. They still had to have the Transcon to Avard and on to KC and Chicago so this would have been a partial duplication. The RI line was in shambles with some incursions by private and public  interests (both legal and otherwise) so the cost to rehab and signalize it would be tremendous. The routes through OKC and Little Rock did not lend themselves to expedient operations. The engineering computations which analyze equivalent straight and level miles reduced the 100 miles savings to somewhat less. So at the time Santa Fe was looking at acquiring this line it did not make sense.

     

     

  • Falcon48

    mudchicken

    (1) The mothballed CRIP/Missouri Central StL-KC Line

    (2) The Mothballed or partially abandoned Peoria - Champaign Peoria & Eastern Line either side of Mansfield IL

    (3) The abandoned Dawson RR or ATSF/DC&CV Raton Pass Bypass (Boise City-Felt-Clayton + Dora-Farley-Colmor)

    (4) The UP/Kansas Pacific/Arkansas Valley RR Kit Carson-Las Animas line

    (5) The M&O/GM&O Mobile to MS State Line segment

    (6) The D&NO/C&S Denver to Pueblo Line + Colorado Springs Branch (or CRIP Falcon-Co Springs)

    I wouldn't include the CRIP StL-KC line.  It hasn't been used for a long time. Even SP, after it acquired it, never used it, opting instead for trackage rights over the UP (ex MP) route between the two cities Since it remained in place (unlike some of the other candidates) it could have been restored relatively easily, if there were a reason to do so.  There hasn't been, and it's unlikely there ever will be. 

    Last year, Missouri Central abandoned a segment on the western end of the line that severed the route (STB Docket No. AB-1068X), The ROW will probably be made into a trail under the National Trails System Act, so the ROW is technically available for reconstruction of the rail line. But, as a practical matter, the abandonment seals the fate of the line as a through route..

    Fallcon:

    (1) The abandonment is less than six miles ...and should the line come back to life (BIG IF), there would be two logical moves made that would make the railbanked line a non-issue.

    (2) You forget why SSW/SP got the lne in the first place and why the people who have the line now have no desire to rehab it. (neither ever wanted to run it, in the right hands, the line remains a "threat")

    (*) Know the line better than most, have walked it all end to end twice since 1998. (and the Osage River Bridge is a thrill along with the tunnels...) The line has several interesting opportunities.

    Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
  • mudchicken

    ...

    (6) The D&NO/C&S Denver to Pueblo Line + Colorado Springs Branch (or CRIP Falcon-Co Springs)

    Looking at topo maps, this line seems to have followed a torturous path over 3 highplains divides, the highest elevation equal to the Palmer Lake divide.  Would this be preferable to re-installing the second track on the Joint Line north of Colorado Springs?

  • MidlandMike

    mudchicken

    ...

    (6) The D&NO/C&S Denver to Pueblo Line + Colorado Springs Branch (or CRIP Falcon-Co Springs)

    Looking at topo maps, this line seems to have followed a torturous path over 3 highplains divides, the highest elevation equal to the Palmer Lake divide.  Would this be preferable to re-installing the second track on the Joint Line north of Colorado Springs?

    You expect the politicians in Colorado Springs/El Paso County to consent to living up to the original agreement in 1975-78 or admit it exists?Laugh; The knucklehead planners in the Springs are trying evererything they know, including suspending the laws of physics to get the surviving rail line out of town or make it commuter-only.

     

    The D&NO alignment and profile was not as bad as you make it out to be / and it could be improved as well to get away from Sand Creek and the Fountain River south of town. The biggest problem would be a certain dam closer to Denver. 

    Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
  • Mudchicken:

    What purpose would the Champaign - Peoria line serve?  Is there grain that could move on that line?

    Ed

  • Ed: The line currently is caught in a big game of keep-away.The outfit that has it out of service goes around the other two sides of a triangle to get to its connections in PIA. The outfit that wants it has a good sized yard at Champaign and would love to access an automobile plant and interchange at Peoria that it used to have over a tenuous excursion over some branchlines that it dumped thirty years ago. Traffic patterns changed and now PIA would be access to multiple AgEnergy and shortline partners.

    Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
  • Murray

    We need back:

    1 - The Lehigh Valley

    2 - The Erie Lackawanna

    3 - The Milwaukee Road (back to the Pacific Northwest)

    I'd love to see The Rock back as well...

    Any argument carried far enough will end up in Semantics--Hartz's law of rhetoric Emerald. Leemer and Southern The route of the Sceptre Express Barry

    I just started my blog site...more stuff to come...

    http://modeltrainswithmusic.blogspot.ca/

  • Thanks Mudchicken....so the outfit with the yard in Champaign would like the auto traffic out of Normal and the current owner keeps them out. 

    The outfit with the yard in Champaign accesses Peoria now via Decatur.   ADM is a huge shipper both in Decatur and Peoria.

    Ed

  • blownout cylinder

    I'd love to see The Rock back as well...

    Most of the Rock Island never went away:  Chicago-Omaha is now Iowa Interstate; Kansas City-Tucumcari, Minneapolis-Kansas City and Kansas City-Fort Worth are part of Union Pacific, plus an assortment of short lines elsewhere.

    Paul The commute to work may be part of the daily grind, but I get two train rides a day out of it.
  • Murray

    We need back:

    1 - The Lehigh Valley

    2 - The Erie Lackawanna

    3 - The Milwaukee Road (back to the Pacific Northwest)

    With the exception of the Milwaukee's Pacific extension, arent significant portions of those Railroads still operated? I know another exception would be the western end of the Erie mainline..

     

    "I Often Dream of Trains"-From the Album of the Same Name by Robyn Hitchcock

  • The LV west (north) of Van Etten, NY is gone as a through route with a few double deadends between Geneva an Buffalo but is fairly intact from Oak Island to VanEtten but under several differrent owners and operators.   LIikewise the Erie/EL is chopped up into similar unattached segments west of the Meadville/Youngstown area to Chicago.  The DL&W/EL is missing a line segment in NJ from Port Morris to Slateford, PA although NJT has ownership of the ROW and in fact is laying a 7 mile section of track west from Port Morris to Andover and hopes to build to Slateford.    The Erie from Meadville and Buffalo east is intact but under different owner/operators and leases to Hoboken, NJ (but freight only as far as the NJ Meadows/Jersey City area).

    RIDEWITHMEHENRY will plan and escort railfan rides in and around the NY Metropolitan and Philadephia areas: no mode of transportation is untouched. Guaranteed railfan fun!

  • This is the sort of "what if" exercise that has ruined many a night's sleep.

    That said, many north-south lines in the Midwest, specifically in Indiana and Ohio, were abandonded with the formation of ConRail. The PRR from Chicago to Cincinnati was the fastest route and called the "passenger line." The majority of the PRR from Pittsburgh to Chicago via Columbus was abandoned west of Columbus. Both of these would have fit very nicely with today's Norfolk Southern. Unfortunately the problem back then was "too much track" and I cannot fault the decision makers of the day for what they kept and what they let go.