• Supermarkets deliveries by rail?

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New York State.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

  by roadster
P&C switch on the B'ville branch is still in place, spiked Out of service. I believe most supermarkets receive rail service in an indirect fashion. Such as the Rail-Ex facility in South Schenectady (I'm pretty sure I've seen Price Chopper trucks at the Rail-Ex facility and they have a warehouse nearly on the opposite side of the CSX Selkirk Branch main line tracks), Tropicana facility in New Jersey(?) and other types of separate but connected operations, where produce and product are shipped via truck to the supermarkets warehouses. On the other hand, a number of products receive material by rail and then ship finished products by truck/containers. I have seen K-Mart and other retailers supplies sent via containers on rail then truck.
  by scharnhorst
I remember seeing Walmart trailers being shipped by rail in the Late 90's.
  by Matt Langworthy
umtrr-author wrote:Another possibility, about which I know nothing... How about the A&P / Ann Page facility down in Elmira? (It hasn't been a grocery warehouse for some time.)
A&P was a massive facility back in the day. EL served it directly when I was a kid and so did Conrail until the early '80s.

At least once source indicates A&P was an LV customer, too. I don't recall ever seeing any LV locals there- does anyone know if LV served A&P directly or did EL act as a bridge?
  by ctclark1
Seeing as the Tops warehouse in Lancaster was built in the mid '90s I doubt they ever got rail services from Conrail to there, and the lack of any visible remnants of a spur off the NYC main supports this.

Not exactly supermarket related, but I know at one time there was a spur to Steuben Foods in Elma.
  by Sir Ray
So far this thread has covered Upstate Supermarket warehouses, but this thread from near 10 years ago talks about the Waldbaum's Warehouse in Central Islip, plus touched on the King Kullen Warehouse in Westbury (oddly, the A&P warehouse in Garden City East/Uniondale is not mentioned)
  by DGC-24711
All of this reminds me of the rails that "swooped down" from the Belt Line on the SW corner of Elmwood and Hertel and crossed Amherst Street through the land that is Wegmans on Amherst Street now. Before Wegmans moved in there, there was an industrial site that held a company that stuffed mass quantities of circuit boards for us. Looking at a 1966 aerial photo of this area, https://library.buffalo.edu/maps/img/ar ... une-12.jpg, I can see how that line had crossed NY 198/north west corner of Buffalo State College (Coyer Field)/Grant Street and into warehouse looking buildings lined up on Tonawanda Street. If you ride/walk on the asphalt path along Scajacquada Creek approaching Niagara Street you go over rails in the pavement.

So this was active well before Wegmans moved onto that site, but I immediately thought of this.
  by SST
Google maps shows both Allied Frozen Storage and C&S Wholesale Grocers/Tops Frozen Distribution that sits along the PRR at or very near Gravity.

About two weeks ago, as I drove along Rt400, I noticed at least 10 cars docked along the warehouse. Nice to see rail business on the line.
  by StLouSteve
Star Market in Rochester used to send out a few boxcars a week of flattened cardboard boxes. This continued into the 70s. Not sure where they went.
  by Backshophoss
A&P at Eastview on the Put,Grand Union at Mt Kisco on the Harlem,Shop Rite at Middletown NY on the Graham Line(EL,CR.NS.and MN)
were Heavy rail users up to the 1980's,Meat.Produce,Paper Products,and General Grocery.
That changed after the concept of "Just in Time"(JIT) deliveries by truck to their respective "Central Warehouse" in the region
Most of the older Walmart DC's had rail service in the past,the rail docks were removed along with the siding(s),as JIT now rules the "roost"
at Walmart.

Walmart does limited intermodal with the FEC,some of the new trailers from the Factory may ride the rails to the DC as the "first trip".
Walmart is unhappy with the Class ! intermodal ramps"handling" of their trailers(trailer damage by the ramp contractor)
  by bostontrainguy
There used to be a Stop & Shop distribution center in Dedham, Mass that was rail served. It was right next to CSX's Readville Yard. Political pressure against the truck traffic from the NIMBYS killed it off. Major Menino of Boston lived in the neighborhood which sealed it's fate. The City used a questionable truck restriction on a local parkway to harass the innocent truck drivers who were just doing their job. It got ugly.

I thought the enormous new Stop & Shop warehouse in Freetown, MA was supposed to get rail but I guess it never happened.
  by Backshophoss
Never saw a siding at that Stop n' Shop DC in Freetown. :(
  by jr
Olean Wholesale Grocery Food Co-op had a large "modern" (1960s) warehouse with rail service from PRR / PC / CR. At one time, they got approx. ten cars a week. Towards the end, it was down to one or two per week. The (inside) sidings were filled in, and paved for additional warehouse space, about 20 years ago.

This company was recently purchased by out-of-town interests, and the warehouse was very recently (September?) shut down.