Travelsonic wrote:http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... rWY#t=738s
Stop it at exactly 12:17 - 12: 19
Is that piece of track a part of the 1955-or-so reconnection of the old NYW&B line to the NYNH&H? The track appears to branch away from the mainline under the bridge in the direction of NYW&B catenary bridge #1 [which is seen quite clearly in the video as well].
Aside from the question, I found this video very interesting and watched most of it which is something that I rarely do. It brought back a lot of memories of past years for me. Yes to your question the track in question branched off what was at one time track 3 but is now track 1 with a hand thrown switch. There was four tracks from that point to 180th Street and beyond but during the last years of the Westchester after SS-8 had been closed and removed there were two hand thrown switches linking tracks 1 and 3 together and 2 and 4 together. The NYW&B tracks ran the same way as the New Haven tracks did with 1 and 2 being the inside tracks and 3 and 4 being the outside tracks. Even numbered tracks were northbound and odd numbered tracks were southbound. There were still 4 tracks between 174th Street (the location of the junction with the NHRR) and 180th Street but tracks 2 and 3 were not nomally used for through movements in this area. They could be by authority of the NYW&B train dispatcher and in this case the hand thrown switches would be used to provide for the movement. During the NYW&B years the tracks from 180th Street became NHRR tracks 1 and 2 from 174 th Street to Harlem River and although owned by the New Haven in the later years these two tracks were operated by and dispatched by the NYW&B and were carried in the NYW&B timetable and not the NHRR timetable. These changes took place over a period of years many, many years ago. When SS-8 was discontinued tracks 1 and 2 between SS-14 and West Farms (SS-8/174th Street) became more or less unused and I believe the signals were removed and they were not connected at the 174th Street end. I don't know if they remained connected at Pelham Bay (SS-14) end or not but I suspect not. Tracks 3 and 4 were the NHRR passenger tracks in that area at the time and still are although they are tracks 1 and 2 today. Old tracks 1 and 2 between 174th Street and Harlem River were as I said NYW&B tracks although still owned by the NHRR. I have been over the connection there a few times to 180th Street or at least close to 180th Street. The most recent time was in the mid 70's when I piloted a Sperry Rail Car from Penn Station to 180th Street to interchange with the Transit Authority. At that time the switch was spiked out of service for removal but the track department came up to unspike it and line it for my move, as far as I know that was the very last time that switch was ever used for any movement. I have the date in my records but not in my head. I think that move reminded the railroad that the switch was still there as they removed it very soon after that move took place. There was only one track usable between 174th Street and 180th Street and today I do not remember whether it was track 2 or track 4 although I seem to think it was track 2. The other three tracks were still in place but disconnected at one end if not both ends and not used, lots of rust on all of them as even the one track was not regularly used at least in the 70's. Back in the early 60's we interchanged subway cars going and coming there as well as loads of stone out of Reeds Gap on the NHRR. The stone moved in Transit Authority owned hopper cars which had clearances that would permit their use in the IRT tunnels.
I hope this clears up your questions. It is an interesting area of history, what used to be there and what remains today.