• Auto Racks to York Pa

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in Pennsylvania
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in Pennsylvania

Moderator: bwparker1

  by train2
Talked with a crewman on NS the other day that mentioned sometime in the last decade (give or take 50 percent) that he observed loaded auto racks going to York, Pa. Anyone remember this and what shipper (or connecting railroad) received them. Today York shows no signs that it would have ever been a destination for auto traffic. Inquiring minds???
  by mvslice

Pretty sure I know where these autoracks went in York. I live in the Harrisburg area, and have driven I-83 to York and Baltimore many times since the 1970s.

I would guess it was in the late 1980s, maybe 1990s, I noticed about a half mile after passing the I-83 interchange at US 30, I-83 passed over a small yard facility, which always seemed to contain three or four tracks with long strings of autoracks. Google map coordinates 39.9791503,-76.7207796 and switch to sat view, and you'll see the facility.

Note the concrete apron on the right side has several tracks running through it. Present day, it appears to be an intermodal facility, but back then, I recall the autoracks were parked on that apron, and also seeing many autos parked at the southern end of the apron, like they'd just been driven off the autoracks. I don't know if this was operated by Conrail, or one of the auto manufacturers as a distribution point, or was run by an independent concern.

I'm pretty sure the long building running north to south at the southern end east of the tracks wasn't there when the autoracks were unloaded here.

If you follow the track north out of this facility, it winds through the countryside, apparently serving several other industrial sites, and then ends up joining what would have been Conrail's line that ran south (eastbound) along the Susquehanna out of the Enola yard.

I remember seeing these trains of autoracks pulled out of that end of the yard with some frequency when I passed there at the time, so they must have moved a lot of autos through that York yard.