• CSX Boston and Albany Line

  • Discussion of the operations of CSX Transportation, from 1980 to the present. Official site can be found here: CSXT.COM.
Discussion of the operations of CSX Transportation, from 1980 to the present. Official site can be found here: CSXT.COM.

Moderator: MBTA F40PH-2C 1050

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  by MrB
 
Off the wall question....what is the purpose of the Westborough yard? The spot used to be an auto unloading facility back about 20 years ago, but what is it serving today? Between the yard and Framingham I don't know of any customers, and between the yard and Worcester I knew of 1 customer and the connection with the G & U. Other than a couple customers there in Westborough, why maintain a yard at this location?
  by QB 52.32
 
Westboro yard provides the base of local operations serving the G&U, Regency Warehouse, Inteplast, Transflo and a corn syrup distributor, though probably most importantly, provides the local yard capacity for constructive placement of cars for Regency and the corn syrup distributor, ie., storage of inbound loads awaiting spotting for unloading, when needed, while in Framingham Nevens yard serves the function of a receiving/departure yard while North yard serves as the classification yard for traffic heading north toward Leominster, east to Readville yard, and south to southeastern MA and the Cape.

On a historic note that informs CSX's current New England play for the purchase of PAR and 50% of PAS, the land of which part was developed as the existing Westboro yard was purchased in the 1950's by the New York Central railroad for the planned purpose of the eventual closure and move of Beacon Park yard in Allston that occurred some 60 years later.
  by bostontrainguy
 
QB 52.32 wrote: Sat Mar 20, 2021 7:45 am On a historic note that informs CSX's current New England play for the purchase of PAR and 50% of PAS, the land of which part was developed as the existing Westboro yard was purchased in the 1950's by the New York Central railroad for the planned purpose of the eventual closure and move of Beacon Park yard in Allston that occurred some 60 years later.
Seems like an excellent option with room to expand and located right on 495. Worcester is way too space restricted and must have cost twice the amount to build. Why wasn't it ever done? Do you know?
  by QB 52.32
 
Yes, for sure, but what was viewed as "developable" back in the 1950's, swamp land (the Great Cedar Swamp), became "undevelopable" in later years due to environmental restrictions. Otherwise, very good chance the existing site of CSX's (expanded) Worcester intermodal facility would have been located there in Westboro.
  by BandA
 
Sell Worcester - SPG to MassDOT, retaining freight rights. MassDOT double-tracks & upgrades track at no cost to CSX. CSX uses the extra cash to pay down cost of buying PAR.
  by johnpbarlow
 
Q: I have spent some time Googling the namesake for Nevens Yard with no luck - does anyone know what RR named that Framingham yard alongside the B&A and for whom? Thanks.
  by QB 52.32
 
Mr. Barlow, I mis-spelled the name, it should be Nevins which is a name also adorning at least one public building in Framingham, though I don't know its significance.
BandA wrote: Sat Mar 20, 2021 6:46 pm Sell Worcester - SPG to MassDOT, retaining freight rights. MassDOT double-tracks & upgrades track at no cost to CSX. CSX uses the extra cash to pay down cost of buying PAR.
That's a possibility, certainly as a first step in a slower long-term plan, to the other possibility of not only purchasing the B&A CP-45 to CP-98, but also upgrading Pan Am Southern and moving (some/most of) the freight traffic off the B&A east of Springfield. At this point there remains too much possibility in the political potential, capital cost savings, horse trading, potential value to CSX, and their early behavior in the play for PAR and 50% of PAS to exclude such a scenario. I suspect developments, likely sooner than later, during the next few years will provide an indication, but at this point I think it's safe to say "you never know!".
  by roberttosh
 
How do you move freight traffic off the B&A East of Springfield when you have multiple trains terminating East of there on the B&A at places like East Brookfield, Worcester & Framingham? The fact that NS is shifting its' intermodal/auto traffic to the B&A tells me that there are no planes period to improve clearances in the Hoosac. I really don't think you're going to see any such diversion to the Fitchburg.
  by jamoldover
 
QB 52.32 wrote:
BandA wrote: Sat Mar 20, 2021 6:46 pm Sell Worcester - SPG to MassDOT, retaining freight rights. MassDOT double-tracks & upgrades track at no cost to CSX. CSX uses the extra cash to pay down cost of buying PAR.
That's a possibility, certainly as a first step in a slower long-term plan, to the other possibility of not only purchasing the B&A CP-45 to CP-98, but also upgrading Pan Am Southern and moving (some/most of) the freight traffic off the B&A east of Springfield.
Never going to happen. Two very simple reasons: 1) CSX has no interest in paying for upgrades to Pan Am Southern, especially when they've indicated (in the STB filing as part of the PAR purchase) that they're likely to be selling off their interest in PAS sometime in the next 10-15 years. They already have enough to do upgrading the Pan Am Railways portion they're buying. 2) There's no way to get the existing traffic off of the B&A east of Springfield without a time-consuming and expensive reversal of the entire train. The connections to go both north and south from Springfield are all on the eastern side of the crossing. CSX isn't going to build an expensive (on a bridge, and over the Connecticut River) connecting track on the western side just so they can run trains over a line owned (currently in part, and eventually completely) by someone else.
johnpbarlow wrote:Q: I have spent some time Googling the namesake for Nevins Yard with no luck - does anyone know what RR named that Framingham yard alongside the B&A and for whom? Thanks.
That's a good question. I can't find mention of yard name(s) in Framingham (Nevins or any other) in any of the B&A/NYC, PC, or CR ETTs I've looked through. It does have that name in a 1979 Conrail New England track chart, but it's not labelled in the 1976 one. It's also labeled that way on a 1970 Penn Central diagram I have of Framingham yards. I don't have any B&A/NYC track charts (only the valuation maps, and those don't have a label on the yard), but until PC, there was only one yard in Framingham (as far as the B&A/NYC was concerned - the other yards are on ex-NH lines), so there wouldn't have been a need to refer to it by a specific name other than "Framingham Yard".
Last edited by jamoldover on Sun Mar 21, 2021 1:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by Safetee
 
I believe that Mister Nevins was a revered Trainmaster of Conrail in the Framingham area
  by roberttosh
 
jamoldover wrote: Sun Mar 21, 2021 1:16 pm Never going to happen.[/u][/b] Two very simple reasons: 1) CSX has no interest in paying for upgrades to Pan Am Southern, especially when they've indicated (in the STB filing as part of the PAR purchase) that they're likely to be selling off their interest in PAS sometime in the next 10-15 years. They already have enough to do upgrading the Pan Am Railways portion they're buying. 2) There's no way to get the existing traffic off of the B&A east of Springfield without a time-consuming and expensive reversal of the entire train. The connections to go both north and south from Springfield are all on the eastern side of the crossing. CSX isn't going to build an expensive (on a bridge, and over the Connecticut River) connecting track on the western side just so they can run trains over a line owned (currently in part, and eventually completely) by someone else.
Those are both good points but what makes this idea a complete non-starter is again, how do you get trains from the Fitchburg to East Brookfield, Worcester and Framingham? The answer is you can't, at least not in any sensible efficient manner.
  by jaymac
 
QB 52.32 wrote:Mr. Barlow, I mis-spelled the name, it should be Nevins ...

QB52.32-
It's also misspelled as "Nevens" on p. A-3, Conrail Albany Division System Timetable, No. 7, effective 12:01 A.M., 1-15-99.
Safetee wrote:I believe that Mister Nevins was a revered Trainmaster of Conrail in the Framingham area
The timetable cited above doesn't list trainmasters, but the Nevins name goes back in Framingham to before the end of the 19th century. Boston-based industrialist David Nevins, Jr., owned -- among other things -- a 320-acre estate in Framingham along Winter Street with the B&A as his southern neighbor and the Fitchburg line of the Old Colony as his eastern one. Wikipedia has too much information Nevins and his family to be included here.
  by Safetee
 
actually, i always thought the trainmaster in question spelled his name nevens. but that was over 40 years ago and continually seeing the name nevins these days leads one to assume that name is the right one. the non railroad nevins name is known well in framingham. But, in any case , it all sounds close enough and in the meantime stay young as long as you can..
  by QB 52.32
 
jamoldover wrote: Sun Mar 21, 2021 1:16 pm
johnpbarlow wrote:Q: I have spent some time Googling the namesake for Nevins Yard with no luck - does anyone know what RR named that Framingham yard alongside the B&A and for whom? Thanks.
That's a good question. I can't find mention of yard name(s) in Framingham (Nevins or any other) in any of the B&A/NYC, PC, or CR ETTs I've looked through.
CSX Transportation Albany Division Timetable No.4 effective Monday, November 1, 2004 page 12 - "Nevins Yard". Additionally, it was called Nevins Yard during PC's and Conrail's tenure as well.
jamoldover wrote:I don't have any B&A/NYC track charts (only the valuation maps, and those don't have a label on the yard), but until PC, there was only one yard in Framingham (as far as the B&A/NYC was concerned - the other yards are on ex-NH lines), so there wouldn't have been a need to refer to it by a specific name other than "Framingham Yard".
There was a second NYC yard in Framingham built in 1946 on their Milford Branch to support General Motors' Framingham Assembly Plant, referred to by PC, CR and CSX as the "CP" yard. Perhaps the NYC called it South Framingham.
  by johnpbarlow
 
I appreciate the responses to my question about the namesake for Nevens / Nevins yard. FWIW, CSX signage says it's "Nevens Yard" as shown in the attached August 2019 photo.
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