Myrtle Beach Tourist Line

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  • Member since
    August 2006
  • From: The Sunny South
  • 430 posts
Posted by Cheese on Thursday, September 13, 2007 4:59 PM

Hmmm,

Well we were thinking of a tourist railroad and a museum. We do plan on having a dinner train, but not as our main train. The main train is the Blackwater Local from MB to Conway and back several times a day, mimiking the TVRRM's Missionary Ridge Local.

Also a weekend (Friday, Sat, and Sunday) excursion, called The Low Country Express up the Carolina Southern to Chadbourn in back on an all day trip (yes, with breakfast, lunch, and dinner being served in the dining cars).

We planned on calling the Dinner Train the Wetlands Dinner Train, running from MB to Conway and back 2 times a night (except sundays, when the only trains run are the all day Low Country Express and afternoon Blackwater Local trains) serving both gourmet foods and the best southern home cooking in the area.

Of course we know we would have to start small, like 3 Blackwater Local trains from MB to Conway and Back a day, hauled by a diesel until we can get a steamer and the money to restore it (We have our eye on a few right now).

The track needs alot of work. The only problem is the Carolina Southern owns those rails and has 2 regular customers on that line. We were thinking of buying it and giving thr Carolina Southern trackage rights, or hadling the freight for them with one of our locomotives, but we still don't know what to do.

And the depot in Myrtle Beach needs external work done. There is only 1 track out front, with beach sand all around for the platform. This will all be taken up. a second track will be laid so we can have a run around siding.

We still haven't decided weather the museum should be at MB or Conway. MB is more likely. The area around the depot is filled with unused land with abandoned buildings. This land is probably owned by Burroughs and Chapin or the City of Myrtle Beach. We have decided to sign a long term lease on the depot in MB or just out right buy it, with the stipulation that should operation cease, the building would return to the City's ownership.

Working on the track will require alot of money. As will finding a serviceable diesels or 2 for the line. We plan on buying our own coaching stock, but, we are considering leasing the Carolina Southern's 4 passenger coaches (2 coaches, 1 first class parlor observation, and a business car that needs alot if internal work) for a period until we have the funds to buy at least 2 coaches, 1 parlor car, and 1 cafe or diner for service.

We'd like to get a 44 toner or something similar. Maybe 2 F7's or so.

Any suggestions. Also, please check out our yahoo group and join to give us more input.

Cheese

 

Nick! :)

  • Member since
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  • From: Aledo IL
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Posted by spokyone on Thursday, September 13, 2007 9:28 AM
I am not a frequent visitor to MB, but certainly think a dinner train would do well.
  • Member since
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  • From: The Sunny South
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Posted by Cheese on Wednesday, September 12, 2007 3:44 PM

Hmm,

Thanks for the input. We need any information we could get. While people do come to Myrtle Beach, Conway is a beutifull historic town with lots to do, even if not well publizized. It might work.

Any other things anyone wants to point out would be greatly appriciated. We would really love for you to join our Yahoo group as all the info about us and what we would like to do is there.

Cheese

Nick! :)

  • Member since
    January 2001
  • From: Atlanta
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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, September 12, 2007 11:42 AM

An interesting idea.  But, remember why people go to Myrtle Beach in the first place....the beach, not to ride a train or to tour Conway.

However, I think the train could be a part of the exerience.  MB has ferocious traffic in the summer, so the rail line could be part of the solution.  The line could function to take people to the Grand Strand for the day from remote lots to the west.  Service would have to be fast, frequent and cheap.  Also, MB would have to improve the pedestrian environment from the station to the beach for this to work.

It could also function to take people staying on the Strand to the outlets and Broadway on the Beach.  Same rules about improving pedestrian environment apply here, too.  Might need to run a free shuttle to the station, too.

And, finally, a dinner train to Conway and back could be a good summer draw.

If the line connected up with Amtrak in Florence or Charleston in any sort of reasonable fashion, which it doesn't, you could try for connecting service from the NE.

If SC even had an inkling that a train could be part of a traffic solution, you could propably get the state to scrounge up some capital to get things going.  Problem is, SC is even more backward than GA when it comes to passenger trains.

The biggest hurdle would be that the business in MB is seasonal and the capital costs are not.  You gotta own the equipment 12 months a year whether you use it or not.

A good model for this would be the Cape May Seashore Lines.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

  • Member since
    August 2006
  • From: The Sunny South
  • 430 posts
Posted by Cheese on Tuesday, September 11, 2007 9:35 PM

Just a Note,

Because we are posting this does not mean we will start one. Right now its just a pipe dream of sorts, but, even in the railroad preservation world things can happen.

Take the UP 3985. When it traveled the Clinchfeild on the Santa Claus train in 1992 nobody thought it possible, but it happened, and all with a group of 3 friends who decided to do something about it.

Cheese

Nick! :)

  • Member since
    August 2006
  • From: The Sunny South
  • 430 posts
Myrtle Beach Tourist Line
Posted by Cheese on Tuesday, September 11, 2007 5:39 PM

Hey Ya'll,

Me and my railfan friend have been thinking about how well a tourist line in Myrtle Beach would do. The longer we thought, the longer we saw how well it would do, but how expensive starting one would be.

Of course it might never happen, but who knows. The line is in place, from Myrtle Beach to Conway on the Carolina Southern, the MB depot is right off 501 going into Downtown, and Conway is a historic town with lots to do and see.

To learn more, take a look at our yahoo group. New things are posted daily, and I will post here when they are up, so take a look, let us know what you think, and if you want join.

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/TheConwayandSeashoreScenic/

Cheese

Nick! :)

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