• Delaware and Raritan River Railroad-General Discussion

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey

Moderator: David

  by CharlieL
 
Can't see Woodhaven going very far. They do a LOT of business thru Monmouth and Ocean counties. Leaving the mess that Lakewood is becoming thru overgrowth, maybe, but somewhere nearby with rail, like Howell.
  by Bracdude181
 
The closest places where they can transload from or move to in South Jersey are on the Robbinsville and Pemberton Industrial Tracks. The Amboy Secondary and Hightstown IT are also not far off and have WAY better service than the Southern. They could also move to Jersey Ave or somewhere else on the NEC and get cars from ME-2, or deal with the Raritan Central Railway in Edison. (Ive heard they are excellent)

If they are REALLY desperate they’ll do what many businesses do, transload it off NS and CSX near Port Newark.

These are, from what I’ve heard, the options they are considering if they have to move or are unwilling/unable to do business with C&D.
  by JohnFromJersey
 
CharlieL wrote: Wed May 25, 2022 4:12 pm The name alone (Delaware and Raritan River) harkens back to the original Delaware and Raritan, the originator of the Southern. Makes me go HMMM. Not that I think there are any plans. Dreams, maybe.
Who knows - the SRNJ tried to get Woodmansie-Winslow back in the 90s and failed due to the state saying no for some reason. Almost 30 years later, the SRNJ isn't doing too good and rumor has it on these forums that they might go under, and get bought out by someone else. I wouldn't be shocked if C&D tried to nab that opportunity.

As said in other threads, there is actually a lot of interest in connecting Woodmansie-Winslow; the US military bases in Lakehurst would be better protected from decommissioning with rail connections, and having more direct access to Philadelphia via a restored Southern Division would be to their benefit, just as one point.

Not to mention, the Port of Salem has been a point of interest for state investment to improve and expand it - particularly with rail. SRNJ's Salem Branch was supposed to get some money - not sure what happened there, but that branch is pretty much OOS at this point.

In the distant distant future, I wouldn't be shocked if a lot of OPM is awarded to C&D/DRRR to restore Winslow-Woodmansie, and they get the Salem Branch - this would give them a pretty good market opportunity in that they would connect to a (relatively minor) port and have a north and south corridor they could take advantage of.

That being said, DRRR reconnecting the FIT and SOUS and expanding its customer base is far more important right now, and that will take some time to finish
Last edited by JohnFromJersey on Sat May 28, 2022 11:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
  by JohnFromJersey
 
Bracdude181 wrote: Wed May 25, 2022 5:45 pm @CharlieL There more to this risk than just the cost of improvements.

Unlike many of the areas C&D operates in, there are other railroads/rail lines where the customers around here can move to or transload from should C&D do what Conrail has been doing since 2003 on this line. (High prices for poor service, trains being held for lack of crews, shipments delayed by derailments and other incidents, etc)

For quite some time in be been hearing that Woodhaven would move out of Lakewood if C&Ds service is not to their liking. Where would they go? My moneys on South Jersey or Dayton.

C&D does indeed have an opportunity to turn things around, but they need to play their cars 100 percent correctly. Fortunately their service (in the sense of actually bringing a train down on a chosen day with no delays caused by them) is better than Conrail, at least on the Dover and Delaware River operation. Can’t speak for DRRV, I don’t know their schedule.
I mean, with how CR has been treating the two lines recently, DRRR sounds like it might be a serious upgrade - they have serious incentive to make these two lines work. It's not like they are CR backed by two giant Class I's who could care less about 30 or so miles of crappy track in NJ for a couple customers.
  by pdtrains
 
FWIW....C&D got to work improving the Wash Sec in no time. Undercutting roadbed under low bridge in Pburg for Plate F cars, rebuilding interchange track, installing new switches, rebuilding grade crossing track circuits, etc. Boreolis..largest customer on the line..now has 1 day service from NS ABE to their plant, 3 days a week. With NS it was 2 days a week, on a haphazard schedule, and a 2 day transit time (at least) just to or from NS ABE.
OTOH..holding on to customera or getting new ones has been a problem. Not necessarily their fault, as state of NJ is dumber than dirt and corrupt as hell

Im surprised that C&D is only getting FIT and SOUS. I would have at least expected them to have trackage rights into Browns for interchange. Maybe that will be a side letter?

Im expecting they will run to pick up interchange cars at least twice a week...so as long as CSAO brings cars down to Jamesburg twice a week... that in itself should improve transit times for consignees considerably. Having cars sit at browns for up to a week before delivery is rather poor.
  by CR7876
 
My opinion is that once the two lines are made whole, the interchange will move to Browns. If not more infrastructure (tracks) will be needed in Jamesburg.
Also expect C&D to tell Woodhaven there is no limit on cars you can order. If 25 cars show up at Browns, 25 cars will go down to the interchange. DRRR will give them two drills that week.
  by CharlieL
 
CR7876, pdtrains, JohnfromJersey, you guys are echoing a lot of my thoughts. Dunno if Woodhaven needs more than the (occasionally as many as) 17 cars a week, but they can almost certainly use 2x/week or more delivery. Especially if deliveries are coordinated with what's dropped off on the FIT currently.

I refuse to look at this takeover as a bad thing, what with the potential for growth.
  by JohnFromJersey
 
pdtrains wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:05 am FWIW....C&D got to work improving the Wash Sec in no time. Undercutting roadbed under low bridge in Pburg for Plate F cars, rebuilding interchange track, installing new switches, rebuilding grade crossing track circuits, etc. Boreolis..largest customer on the line..now has 1 day service from NS ABE to their plant, 3 days a week. With NS it was 2 days a week, on a haphazard schedule, and a 2 day transit time (at least) just to or from NS ABE.
OTOH..holding on to customera or getting new ones has been a problem. Not necessarily their fault, as state of NJ is dumber than dirt and corrupt as hell
CR's service bar is already pretty low. All DRRR has to do is not treat the customers like they're second rate.
pdtrains wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:05 am Im surprised that C&D is only getting FIT and SOUS. I would have at least expected them to have trackage rights into Browns for interchange. Maybe that will be a side letter?
DRRR is technically a new company - CR management probably wants to see how the interchange proceeds go before they let them onto a pretty busy and important CR line
pdtrains wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:05 am Im expecting they will run to pick up interchange cars at least twice a week...so as long as CSAO brings cars down to Jamesburg twice a week... that in itself should improve transit times for consignees considerably. Having cars sit at browns for up to a week before delivery is rather poor.
Did cars for Woodhaven/FIT and SOUS customers actually sit in Browns for that long before they got delivered???? That's really screwed up...
CR7876 wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 8:07 am My opinion is that once the two lines are made whole, the interchange will move to Browns. If not more infrastructure (tracks) will be needed in Jamesburg.
Also expect C&D to tell Woodhaven there is no limit on cars you can order. If 25 cars show up at Browns, 25 cars will go down to the interchange. DRRR will give them two drills that week.
I agree, I think it's far more likely that DRRR will just get trackage rights to Browns via the Amboy Secondary, than them taking over Browns completely, like what has been suggested here before. CR will keep ownership of Browns and whatever non-FIT/SOUS tracks are connected to the Amboy Secondary - there are too many rather large customers there that even CR doesn't want to give up, and that could overwhelm DRRR.

It could also be likely that depending on market conditions, there may be weeks here and there that Woodhaven could get daily deliveries - I can for sure see them getting at least twice a week almost immediately after takeover. Tuesday-Thursdays, like how it was when Gold's Lumber was around?
CharlieL wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 8:22 am CR7876, pdtrains, JohnfromJersey, you guys are echoing a lot of my thoughts. Dunno if Woodhaven needs more than the (occasionally as many as) 17 cars a week, but they can almost certainly use 2x/week or more delivery. Especially if deliveries are coordinated with what's dropped off on the FIT currently.

I refuse to look at this takeover as a bad thing, what with the potential for growth.
Pretty sure it's been established that Woodhaven wanted more frequent and/or longer trains in the past - for whatever reason, CR said no, you'll get once a week and only a max of ~20 cars. I'd imagine that if CR doesn't have to traverse the FIT or SOUS anymore, they would probably be far more willing to drop off more frequent loads to the interchanges - as simple as dropping it up, getting the empties, and GTHO of there - no need to go down some less than mediocre trackage.
  by pdtrains
 
IDK how anyone could possibly see C&D operating in central Jersey as a bad thing.

CSAO is nothing more than a pawn of the Class1's, who over the last 20 years have made a marked turn toward discouraging carload freight, other than between pads at their major yards. They would just as soon have all outlying consignees truck their freight from OI to the destination.

CSAO was formed back at CR split time, to give both NS and CSX equal access to consignees in New Jersey. Now both NS and CSX dont reall want the business past their major yards...and therefore, they could care less about CSAO operations.

The best thing that could happen...IMHO, is if that all the CSAO operations in NJ were given over to shortlines. For shortlines, moving carload freight IS their bread and butter.

The class1's are lost these days, with no mission for the future, and only concerned with short term stock price.

There's an old saying..."If u take care of the business, the business will take care of you" Seems to be totally forgotten or ignored by the few major RR's that are left.
  by jdh823
 
Just out of genuine curiosity,

What is the potential traffic that the new guys can get out on the freehold? I would think anything new would have to be built in since there isn't much left...

Maybe Nestlé? Just a wild guess
  by Bracdude181
 
@pdtrains To an extent, Conrail has already focused to just bringing the carloads down to a transload pad in North Jersey. It seems like doing that, switching out Port Newark and the oil refineries, and transferring to connecting short line railroads for as cheaply as physically possible is all that they care about now.

@JohnFromJersey Woodhavens trains being stored in Browns for days at a time has been the norm for many years now. This is partially because Woodhaven buys from multiple suppliers from across the country. Most of it comes in on Q433 into Oak Island, but not all of their loads come in at the same time nor on the same train.

It was okay years ago because they were only getting 4-5 cars maximum for a while and Conrail was still running a transfer to Browns every night, so the cars at least got to the point where SA31 could take them onwards consistently. They also stuck to their schedules better back then. After Sandy, they began getting trains that could no longer fit inside their facility, so they requested Conrail to run twice a week with 7-8 cars per trip to compensate. Conrail told them to eff off and that they weren’t gonna pay to run twice a week on the Southern, so Woodhaven was forced to spend $300,000 for a second track to be installed, allowing Conrail to bring them 15-17 cars all in one go. Adding to these problems are the delays and derailments Conrail has been having, fees NJT charges on freight, certain cars not always making it to Browns before Southern runs, and Conrail raising their prices way up has lead to Woodhaven being extremely dissatisfied with Conrails service as of late.

What’s really concerning me are the rumors sprouting up about what Woodhaven is gonna do if they are displeased with how C&D runs things. For quite some time now I’ve been hearing that they will cease rail service to their Lakewood location if rail service does not improve. If this happens soon enough and C&D doesn’t pick up more customers, this line will almost certainly be shut down. I don’t think C&D would keep this line running just to bring cars to Extech and Bel-Ray as needed, especially considering the latter only gets 2-3 cars a month at most and the former only gets shipments when they need to restock.
  by CR7876
 
jdh823 wrote:Just out of genuine curiosity,

What is the potential traffic that the new guys can get out on the freehold? I would think anything new would have to be built in since there isn't much left...

Maybe Nestlé? Just a wild guess
Nestle is one, Rex Lumber in Englishtown is another. Don't sleep on Stavola and/or Anchor as a potential landing spot for sand.
Bracdude181 wrote: What’s really concerning me are the rumors sprouting up about what Woodhaven is gonna do if they are displeased with how C&D runs things. For quite some time now I’ve been hearing that they will cease rail service to their Lakewood location if rail service does not improve. If this happens soon enough and C&D doesn’t pick up more customers, this line will almost certainly be shut down. I don’t think C&D would keep this line running just to bring cars to Extech and Bel-Ray as needed, especially considering the latter only gets 2-3 cars a month at most and the former only gets shipments when they need to restock.
Your last rumor was that C&D was backing out.

I'd be more concerned with the value of land that the Woodhaven site sits on in Lakewood. It's no secret that ALOT of land in and around the Lakewood industrial park has been re zoned for residential development. I can't see Woodhaven, who you say is dissatisfied with Conrail, move to another Conrail served site and then use trucks to move the lumber down to Lakewood, or another of their yards.
  by jdh823
 
CR7876 wrote: Sun May 29, 2022 9:20 am Nestle is one, Rex Lumber in Englishtown is another. Don't sleep on Stavola and/or Anchor as a potential landing spot for sand.
Surprises me that Nestle doesn't have any sort of spur and there's no evidence of one ever being there. Their other sites do get cars (hoppers for the most part it seems) so I'd say that could be the most likely.

There's a few junkyard/recycling facilities nearby as well maybe they could lure them in as well? Just a hypothetical guess.
  by Bracdude181
 
@CR7876 The rumors that they were thinking about backing out stemmed from a Conrail conductor I know, and others began telling me that later on.

Considering the amount of times someone has shown interest in taking the Southern over only to back out or not do it for other reasons, I figured it was certainly possible and reported it wondering if anyone else was hearing the same thing from others I may not know.

True, they have re-zoned a fair bit of Lakewood with the exception of most of the industrial zone Woodhaven is in. Lakewood is their main facility where everything comes in and where they manufacture all their products, so I too have to question the rumors of them moving. If they absolutely have to I could see them transloading from somewhere else. Large, rail-served customers like Woodhaven have resorted to transloading should rail service not meet their requirements. Like the Twin Rivers Paper Company in Maine did when they had problems with Montreal Maine and Atlantic.
Last edited by Bracdude181 on Sun May 29, 2022 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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