• Official Rahway Valley Thread

  • Discussion about the M&E, RVRR and SIRR lines of New Jersey, and also the Maine Eastern operation in Maine. Official web site can be found here: www.merail.com.
Discussion about the M&E, RVRR and SIRR lines of New Jersey, and also the Maine Eastern operation in Maine. Official web site can be found here: www.merail.com.

Moderators: GOLDEN-ARM, mikec, cjl330

  by Jtgshu
 
Im surprised to see the stored covered hoppers stored ON the NEC bridge. I thought that they had to split the cars up, and leave the bridge clear, because of Amtrak concerns with the bridge?
  by R36 Combine Coach
 
The wood freight house was torn out in the late 80s and this is now the only RVRR structure standing (other than ROW).
  by NE2
 
Is this an accurate statement of the current status?
Rahway Valley: entirely out of service
Staten Island: in service from a non-connection with the Raritan Valley Line at Cranford Junction to east of Brunswick Avenue in Bayway, but used only for car storage

I'm also confused about http://www.stb.dot.gov/Decisions/readin ... enDocument. Why does it exclude "the portion of the line immediately west of milepost 9.8 to milepost 11.5 at the municipal boundary of the Borough of Roselle and the Township of Cranford"? Does someone else own the right-of-way in Roselle?
  by Sirsonic
 
NE2 wrote:Is this an accurate statement of the current status?
Rahway Valley: entirely out of service
Staten Island: in service from a non-connection with the Raritan Valley Line at Cranford Junction to east of Brunswick Avenue in Bayway, but used only for car storage
The Rahway Valley is entirely out of service, yes. There has been no work performed since all work stopped some time ago due to a lack of funds. Some track had been removed in preparation for relaying new track, and that track has not been restored. The line has no connection to any other line of railroad right now.

There has been now straight answer about the official status of the SIRY. The line is obviously usable as there are cars stored on the far end of the line in Cranford, although the M&E maintains the line is OOS because the crossing protection has not yet been upgraded. Significant funding was provided for upgrading the crossing protection on this line, however, only one crossing has been upgraded, the others having wooden posts with crossbucks put up to provide some warning of a grade crossing. It would seem that the money pit that sucked in all the other money for this project has also consumed the money for the grade crossings.
I'm also confused about http://www.stb.dot.gov/Decisions/readin ... enDocument. Why does it exclude "the portion of the line immediately west of milepost 9.8 to milepost 11.5 at the municipal boundary of the Borough of Roselle and the Township of Cranford"? Does someone else own the right-of-way in Roselle?
That line segment was excluded in the agreement between the M&E and Union County, excepting that it would be rehabilitated and operated with the rest of the line upon the consent of the parties to the agreement. This agreement must have been reached as that segment of the line was rehabilitated with the rest of the line.
  by NE2
 
Sirsonic wrote:
NE2 wrote:I'm also confused about http://www.stb.dot.gov/Decisions/readin ... enDocument. Why does it exclude "the portion of the line immediately west of milepost 9.8 to milepost 11.5 at the municipal boundary of the Borough of Roselle and the Township of Cranford"? Does someone else own the right-of-way in Roselle?
That line segment was excluded in the agreement between the M&E and Union County, excepting that it would be rehabilitated and operated with the rest of the line upon the consent of the parties to the agreement. This agreement must have been reached as that segment of the line was rehabilitated with the rest of the line.
That doesn't seem right - this filing gives the M&E authority to operate the lines as a common carrier. I can't find any other filing for the Roselle segment, so they don't appear to have the right to operate it. The full filing is a little murkier, and could possibly be interpreted to include that segment but only exclude it from the schedule, in which case the STB improperly summarized it.
  by Sirsonic
 
The STB has not granted any authority, all they are doing is publishing notice that in accordance with the law, the M&E has filled notice of what they are doing. I don't know if they would need to file further notice with the board, as their initial filling says
This portion of the rail line shall only be rehabilitated only upon the mutual consent of the parties to this Agreement, who will continue to develop an appropriate time line for such rehabilitation.
This wording of the filling leads me to believe that this notice was sufficient to operate the excepted portion of "Phase II", once the parties reached an agreement on the rehabilitation of that segment. Given that the excepted portion was rehabilitated along with the rest of Phase I and Phase II, it would seem as though the parties did reach an agreement.
  by NE2
 
To operate a line as a common carrier in interstate commerce, a company has to get STB approval.
  by Sirsonic
 
NE2 wrote:To operate a line as a common carrier in interstate commerce, a company has to get STB approval.
They never got "approval" in the first place. The M&E simply filled notice, and the STB published the notice they received. Only if there is an objection does the board need to get more involved.

Let me also point out that in later appeals to try and block the resumption of service, the STB made reference to their "decision" in their decision summary of that appeal:
DENIED THE PETITION OF FIVE NEW JERSEY MUNICIPALITIES TO REOPEN A JULY 5, 2002 BOARD DECISION GRANTING A MODIFIED CERTIFICATE OF PUBLIC CONVENIENCE AND NECESSITY TO MORRISTOWN & ERIE RAILWAY, INC. TO OPERATE CERTAIN RAILROAD LINES IN NEW JERSEY.
The STB decision from 2002 also makes reference to the restrictions placed on the restoration of service to the Rahway Valley indicated in the agreement, which the M&E has maintained they have received the permission from Union County to operate, as required by their agreement. Again, it seems as though the board referenced these restrictions from the agreement not to restrict their decision, but to allow operation of those lines when the requirements of the agreement regarding consent of the parties was fulfilled.
  by NE2
 
Sirsonic wrote:
NE2 wrote:To operate a line as a common carrier in interstate commerce, a company has to get STB approval.
They never got "approval" in the first place. The M&E simply filled notice, and the STB published the notice they received. Only if there is an objection does the board need to get more involved.
Sorry - that was unclear. The "approval" in most cases is automatic once the exemption is filed, but it needs to be filed. I believe their intent and the STB's intent was to include the Roselle segment in the filing; it's just presented very awkwardly.
  by Sirsonic
 
The M&E once again sucked up taxpayer money and produced nothing more than lame excuses. Remember when the second round of funding was supposed to pay for crossing signals all along the SIRY? Only one crossing has been so equipped. I for one will be contacting those responsible to push for a full criminal investigation into where my tax money went.
  by Common Sense
 
Sirsonic wrote:The M&E once again sucked up taxpayer money and produced nothing more than lame excuses. Remember when the second round of funding was supposed to pay for crossing signals all along the SIRY? Only one crossing has been so equipped. I for one will be contacting those responsible to push for a full criminal investigation into where my tax money went.
Perhaps they can Comp you a ride on one of those nice passenger cars behind one of those nice ex AMT pups.
  by RAHWAY VALLEY
 
Re: Official Rahway Valley Thread
by Sirsonic on Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:32 pm

The M&E once again sucked up taxpayer money and produced nothing more than lame excuses. Remember when the second round of funding was supposed to pay for crossing signals all along the SIRY? Only one crossing has been so equipped. I for one will be contacting those responsible to push for a full criminal investigation into where my tax money
went.


Don't complain about the M&E Ry! They're just acting as a general contractor. If you're concerned about what's going on with your tax money, then complain about Trenton. November is your chance to change the makeup of the NJ State Government. Go out and vote out the current administration in Trenton.
  by CJPat
 
What was the total original allotment of funds from Union County? Wasn't it something like $7 Mil the first time and a $1.5 Mil addendum? I am not knowledgeable enough in the costs of railroad construction, but considering the amounts I hear needed for all the other projects, it appears to me that M&E got pretty far along for just $8.5 Mil. They cleared and rebuilt/rehabbed over 10-15 miles of track between the SIRR and the RVRR(never finished the RVRR, it remains unballasted and unconnected to any main line) and fixed up several grade crossings. On this Forum, I have heard estimates that it takes anywhere between $1-7 Million per mile (depending on accessory infrastructure needs). Without complete resources, the job was not conducted efficiently but considering the County kept promising to get the additional funding needed, it looks like the M&E did their job adequately. The NET accomplishment is not be much to date until the overall project is complete.

Just my general opinion without knowing construction details of the contract.
  by blockline4180
 
Sirsonic wrote:The M&E once again sucked up taxpayer money and produced nothing more than lame excuses. Remember when the second round of funding was supposed to pay for crossing signals all along the SIRY? Only one crossing has been so equipped. I for one will be contacting those responsible to push for a full criminal investigation into where my tax money went.

And I'm sure if such an investigation were made there would be cover ups as to where the money went...Don't get me wrong, I love the Morristown & Erie as a railfan, but after Ben friedland passed, there were a lot of very questionable things that went on within the railroad that would look very bad to the average taxpayer. And some of these things have not benefited the community in anyway.
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