• Rockland Branch Discussion

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

Moderators: MEC407, NHN503

  by NHV 669
 
Midcoast went west through Finntown Road in Warren at 13:46 with with 3 scrap loads and two empty perlite cars. L077 has 5 empty cement cars and a single car each for ASA and DiCaperl to go back east. A second steel load is already waiting in Brunswick.
  by MaineCoonCat
 
artman wrote: Mon Jan 22, 2024 11:53 am Company wants to begin service this May.
Another company has proposed an excursion train from Brunswick to Rockland that would include a fine-dining car, marking the latest attempt to revive passenger service on the 57-mile Rockland Branch.
UmmmHmmm.. Why is this flashing in my mind?
bsrc logo flash.gif
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  by Goddraug
 
Wouldn't they have to compete with the planned Amtrak service and whatever Midcoast has cooking up post-RDC? I feel like having three operators on the line (Amtrak, Midcoast, and these guys) would be a bit crowded.
  by NHV 669
 
Key word is "proposed". You have a startup that says they can have a service ready in months (we'll see), vs. Amtrak who is still stuck in the planning stage, and Midcoast who no longer has the extra equipment to run anything.
  by Emmett
 
whatever happens, it will be good in the end, because ultimately the companies are actually making attempts to have services on the corridor. I'm just happy that the line will *hopefully* be active.
  by FatNoah
 
UmmmHmmm.. Why is this flashing in my mind?
They seem to be slightly more legit since they have some people with actual transit experience in their leadership, but they're also a "bit more aggressive" in their vision: https://ameristarrail.com/vision & https://ameristarrail.com/proposals
The AmeriStarRail (ASR) proposal will expand Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor (NEC) capacity to meet travel demand for the next 20 - 40 years.
  by MaineCoonCat
 
Knowing the area since childhood, I don't see a huge tourist draw in the Rockland - Thomaston - Warren - Waldoboro area. And what there is, other than maybe the Lobster Festival, will be hampered by the good old "last mile" issue. That may prove most vexing to solve.
  by GP40MC1118
 
Interesting news that All-Earth has apparently given up on any Vermont service. Thanks!

DS
  by artman
 
Goddraug wrote: Tue Jan 23, 2024 5:55 pm Wouldn't they have to compete with the planned Amtrak service and whatever Midcoast has cooking up post-RDC? I feel like having three operators on the line (Amtrak, Midcoast, and these guys) would be a bit crowded.
Midcoast seems game:
The company would need to reach a deal with Midcoast Railservice, ...has been running commercial freight on the line and tested a 76-passenger excursion train during the summer tourist season last year ahead of a planned weekend rollout, but the announced closure of the Dragon Products cement plant in Rockland last year and equipment issues with its passenger car have thrown a wrench in its plans. Dragon Products represents 90% of the company’s freight traffic.

“We’re willing to talk,” said George Betke, Midcoast Railservice’s co-founder and vice president. “We want to see trains running.”
  by Goddraug
 
Glad to hear it. In other news, their marketing manager posted on LinkedIn that they're currently in talks with potential new customers and they're close to securing passenger equipment. Whether that comes first or this service does, time will tell.

They also did a pretty solid job fixing up small washouts on the line after the horrific storms that battered Maine last week.
  by CPF66
 
Supposedly a local buyer is looking at the Dragon plant. By the sounds if they do buy it, the material will only be sold around Maine, they aren't interested in doing the large scale contracts like the current owners.
  by BandA
 
I like maps too. When I saw the line to Montreal it seemed like a "jump the shark" moment until I read "proposed future motorcoach", which actually seems plausible. Perhaps this group can use the freight operator to supply maintenance & operating crews and a locomotive, and acquire BSRC's motorcoach(es)...
  by NHV 669
 
if they're serious about this proposal, and not BSRC 2.0, the last thing they would want to do is offer a 5+ hour ride on outdated buses.
  by Emmett
 
any updates on midcoasts opportunities? They planning to hold the fort or abandon ship?
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