• Fort Lee to Fort A.P. Hill: Army looks at troop trains

  • A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads
A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by RailVet
So far there's been no official word on passenger car paint schemes, but I expect that, other than replacing the VRE logo with an Army one and VIRGINIA RAILWAY EXPRESS on the side with U.S. ARMY, they won't get too extravagant because this costs money. If the Army wants to use the cars as rolling billboards for recruitment purposes, perhaps a flashier paint scheme will appear, but don't expect camouflage because these aren't tactical vehicles.

As for which costs more (security vs. repair), it depends upon whose pocket it's coming out of. I don't know if VRE is responsible for delivering the cars intact to the Army or if this simply wasn't considered in the contract and it's left up to the Army to foot the bill, but if it involved leaving the cars for any length of time in an unsecured area (and that was a given), it certainly should have been included in the contract. It's a simple fact of life - if you leave things out, people will steal them. I well recall a drill sergeant in basic training warning us that "Your buddy will f*** you, Joe! Your buddy will f*** you! He'll steal your d*** if you put it down!" And he was right, too.
  by RailVet
According to this article

http://progress-index.com/news/soldiers ... z1pVeAFV52

the equipment will be leaving Fort Lee, although exactly when and where is still up in the air.

Excerpt: "The equipment that was obtained for the pilot program - three former Virginia Railway Express locomotives and 10 bi-level passenger rail cars - will be returned to TACOM Life Cycle Management Command for further military use, according to Carson."

It's very unlikely the Army will have a use anywhere else for the 10 passenger cars, and even the three locomotives are probably excess to the Army's motive power requirements, so my best guess is that they'll be transferred to another government agency or put up for sale to a civilian buyer at some point.
  by Jeff Smith
I merged the other topic in. Shame.

Here's a link and a quote:

http://blogs.fredericksburg.com/newsdes ... op-trains/
The command said the evaluation found a “much higher start-up and operating cost than originally estimated,” while total travel time would have nearly tripled compared with the current method of sending the soldiers on buses.

The bus trip from Fort Lee takes about three hours; the train journey would have taken eight or nine hours.

The Army bought three locomotives and 10 gallery-style passenger cars last year from Virginia Railway Express for $250,000.

But it estimated that other start-up expenditures of as much as $325,000 would have been required, along with additional ongoing costs that were deemed unacceptable.

For example, the cost of contracting for the operation of the train would have been more than $1 million annually—about $400,000 more than initial estimates.
  by kevin.brackney
I'd like to see the bullet comments on that OER. Sounds like someone failed do do their research/homework. I suspect that's what happens when you get non-railroad people involved in a railroad project.
  by Milwaukee_F40C
Metra is looking for a few more relief fleet cars again. They still have a few of these Pullman stragglers that they attempted to retire completely in the early 2000s. They bought back a few cars at a time from VRE and UTA, so buying the army cars wouldn't be unprecedented.

If not Metra, some "railfan" "businessman" will buy them and let them rust somewhere for a couple decades, like most commuter cars that have been sold since the 90s.
  by RailVet

Four surplus passenger rail cars at Fort Lee brought about $9,000 each at an online auction.

Another four of the 85-foot passenger rail cars will be auctioned next week. Bidding for one of the double-deck commuter cars starts at $25.

The rest of the story:

http://www.timesdispatch.com/business/e ... 977bb.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;