• River Line/Northern RT

  • 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 SPUI
 
What's the state of the southernmost part of the River Line, where it wasn't used for the HBLR? Is it and the P&H Line still used to access the National Docks Branch?

Is the Northern Running Track still called that, or has Conrail upgraded its name, since it now carries a lot of traffic?
  by Lackawanna484
 
SPUI wrote:What's the state of the southernmost part of the River Line, where it wasn't used for the HBLR? Is it and the P&H Line still used to access the National Docks Branch?
The National Docks track runs alongside the HBLRT from the vicintity of the 33rd street station north to the Liberty Science Center. There's a grade differential which begins south of the HBLRT service center, and HBLRT crosses under National Docks near Communipaw Avenue.
  by SPUI
 
Lackawanna484 wrote:
SPUI wrote:What's the state of the southernmost part of the River Line, where it wasn't used for the HBLR? Is it and the P&H Line still used to access the National Docks Branch?
The National Docks track runs alongside the HBLRT from the vicintity of the 33rd street station north to the Liberty Science Center. There's a grade differential which begins south of the HBLRT service center, and HBLRT crosses under National Docks near Communipaw Avenue.
I'm talking about the line north of there. The National Docks passes under PATH, under the P&H/River Line connection, and then curves east onto its own recently-built connection to the Erie tunnel. If you take the left fork there, it merges with the connection from the P&H line and forms the River Line, which continues or used to continue north over the Erie tunnel approach and along the west side of Hoboken, where the HBLR is now.

  by SPUI
 
Well I found part of the answer, on http://www.stb.dot.gov/decisions/readin ... enDocument (and other related documents). However, I'm having some trouble making sense of the descriptions (footnotes 3 and 4).
Footnote 4 makes perfect sense. The mileposts match http://www.trainweb.org/eastpenn/ett/crprivl1.gif; what's being abandoned is the whole River Line from the changeover from the P&H Line to Tonnelle Ave, as well as the connection between the National Docks and the River Line, and what appears to be a branch in Weehawken.
Footnote 3 is what I don't understand at all. It seems to use completely different mileposts, and duplicates the track in footnote 4.
Anyone want to help out? I'm rather stuck here.

  by Lackawanna484
 
Based on a quick read, the filing appears to describe two related lines:

the section of the HBLRT
from just north of the Morristown Line crossing ("the Hoboken lead to the DL&W freight yard")
north along the former Erie and New York Central lines
to Baldwin Avenue (where the New York Central's Kings Bluff Yard began)
and
north through the tunnel to North Bergen. All of this is currently HBLRT.

the second part looks like it runs from the upper end of the NAVE connection, north and west to the southeast entrance to the Bergen tunnel to Croxton, which is just south of the DL&W freight lead

  by SPUI
 
I think the Hoboken Lead refers to the track that the DL&W used from the Erie's Weehawken Branch into Hoboken Terminal, before they built their own tunnel.

The second one seems very clear to me - it's the whole River Line, from the P&H Line to Tonnelle Ave. The problem is that the first one also describes part of the same line.

  by Lackawanna484
 
SPUI wrote:I think the Hoboken Lead refers to the track that the DL&W used from the Erie's Weehawken Branch into Hoboken Terminal, before they built their own tunnel.

The second one seems very clear to me - it's the whole River Line, from the P&H Line to Tonnelle Ave. The problem is that the first one also describes part of the same line.
OK

The Erie and EL used "Weehawken Branch" to refer to the line which ran parallel to, and just each of the New York Central. Erie had rights into the Kings Bluff Yard and into Todd-Seatrain over this line.

The tracks were side by side, and the right of way is now occupied by the HBLRT. I think the Central gave EL rights over their line circa 1965, which allowed EL to sell the right of way. Sheppard has some detail in his EL track guide

  by SPUI
 
Aha, so there were two tracks right next to each other. That makes so much more sense - thanks.

Any idea if and where there were crossovers between the two?

  by SPUI
 
Eh. If you go to http://www.earlpleasants.com/search_1.asp and type in 'docks connecting', you get:
Code: Select all
   1.  RAILROAD: Docks Connecting Railway
   2. LINE_OF_RD: See Memo.
   3. ORIGIN:  
   4. CURRENT: Erie Railroad
   5. SUCCESSORS: (1942) Erie Railroad (Dis 1942)
   6. TEXT: M1940 From East portal of Bergen Tunnel to a connection with the New Jersey Junction Railroad, over which the Erie Railroad has trackage rights for a distance of 2.09 miles to Weehawken, New Jersey. This company is controlled by the Erie Railroad through ownership of all their stock, and operated by the Erie Railroad through stock control alone:
From this it's obvious that there was only one line, at least in 1940. Was the separate Weehawken Branch built later?

  by pumpers
 
SPUI,

This sounds like the same piece of RR which was discussed
by you and others in
http://forums.railfan.net/forums.cgi?bo ... 1027141628

Also, Sanborn insurance maps from 1930 or so in West Hobokon
show 4 tracks next to each other, with the west 2 labelled
NJJRR (NJ Junction) and the east 2 labelled Erie.

How does this all fit together?
JS

  by Lackawanna484
 
SPUI wrote:Eh. If you go to http://www.earlpleasants.com/search_1.asp and type in 'docks connecting', you get:
Code: Select all
   1.  RAILROAD: Docks Connecting Railway
   2. LINE_OF_RD: See Memo.
   3. ORIGIN:  
   4. CURRENT: Erie Railroad
   5. SUCCESSORS: (1942) Erie Railroad (Dis 1942)
   6. TEXT: M1940 From East portal of Bergen Tunnel to a connection with the New Jersey Junction Railroad, over which the Erie Railroad has trackage rights for a distance of 2.09 miles to Weehawken, New Jersey. This company is controlled by the Erie Railroad through ownership of all their stock, and operated by the Erie Railroad through stock control alone:
From this it's obvious that there was only one line, at least in 1940. Was the separate Weehawken Branch built later?
Nope.

Page 2 of the 1974 Sheppard Diagram of Erie-Lackawanna clearly shows two, side by side, tracks passing under the Lackawanna by Grove tower. The nearer track is marked Erie Weehawken branch, the farther (from the river) is marked PennCentral.

The Erie track has south end points of Croxton and North yard (Monmouth Street coach yard? maybe), and a north directional of Hoboken Shore interchange. The PC track has an endpoint of TU on the north.

I didn't get to the Trackside Diagrams of Tidewater terminals, but my recollection is it shows the two tracks parallel to the south end of the Lincoln Tunnel helix at Willow Ave. The NYC continues north to Kings Bluff yard. The Erie interchanged with Hoboken Shore near 17th and Willow, then continued north, alongside the Central, to a point 600 feet north of Baldwin Avenue where it entered the yard. A separate Erie spur continued from the HS interchange to Todd shipyard / Seatrain, etc.

Page 1067 of the 1951 Moodys Manual describes the NYC line as "New Jersey Junction Railroad" leased by the Central in 1914, and operated by the Central, with two main tracks of 4.33 miles each, and one of 4.20 miles. One longer track was leased to the Erie. The phrasing is "Company also owns 4.33 miles of other main track which is leased to, and operated by, the Erie."

The NJJ line is described as connecting with the West Shore on the noth, and the DL&W, Erie, and PRR to the south. My recollection is two tracks in the 1970s, going to one track around the time Conrail came in. The Erie right of way became the dirt road used by CR cops in the "war zone" of west Hoboken in the 1980s.

Hoboken Shore, which was controlled by the Zeckendorf real estate interests, served shipping interests and warehouses along a line from Fifth Street Hoboken to Seventeenth Street Hoboken, where it interchanged with the Erie. The Lincoln Harbor development and the fashionable 14th street restaurant row were once part of this line's grimy business.

Over the years, the railroads changed names on a regular basis. Hoboken Connecting, Hoboken Manufacturers, etc.

  by red baron
 
Just to add a little more detail to what Lackawanna 484 said:
"The Erie track has south end points of Croxton and North yard (Monmouth Street coach yard? maybe), and a north directional of Hoboken Shore interchange. The PC track has an endpoint of TU on the north."

The south end of the Weehawken Branch was at "OS" tower. It formed a wye, with the w/b track curving under the NJ Jct RR and into the Erie tunnel, and the e/b track curving eastward, connecting with the Erie main into Pavonia Terminal / North Yard.

The NJ Jct continued southward (2 tracks until approx 1976) to "NJ" (NJ Junction), where a track connected eastward with the former PRR main to Exchange Place. The National Docks continued from this point on, under Waldo Yard tunnel to the south.

Interesting area, at one time anyway.

  by Lackawanna484
 
Thanks, red baron.

"TU", I believe, was the control point in West Shore yards at Weehawken. Can anyone confirm that?

  by red baron
 
"TU" was the NYC interlocking in Weehawken, located in the center of the wye at the entrance to the Bergen Tunnel.