• Longest interurban survivors?

  • General discussion about fallen trolley and interurban lines in North America, past and present.
General discussion about fallen trolley and interurban lines in North America, past and present.

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by DT662000
 
Were any lines abandoned after the Chicago, North Shore & Milwaukee in 1963?
I can't think of any others that outlived the "North Shore Line" and aren't still around in some form today (e.g. the "South Shore", the P&W, etc.)
  by walt
 
The South Shore Line and the P&W have long been considered the last two remaining interurbans, however each has some characteristics of other types of rail lines. The South Shore, especially with its current passenger equipment is very much like a commuter railroad, while the P&W ( as the Norristown High Speed Line) has elements similar to rapid transit lines. Note that between the somewhat forced retirement of the Bullet Cars and the acquisition of the present Adtranz N-5 cars, SEPTA ran two types of actual rapit transit equipment on that lhe--- ex Chicago Transit Authority PCC rapid transit cars and ex Market-Frankford M-3 ( Almond Joy) cars further emphasising the rapid transit connection. Both lines, though have definate interurban roots.
  by FLRailFan1
 
How about Cedar River and Iowa City?
  by ebtmikado
 
In addition to the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City,
the Mason City & Clear Lake (now Iowa Traction) still operates electric freight,
using steeplecab electric locomotives. There is also an ex-North Shore line car,
and a North Shore steel passenger car.

Lee Carlson
  by JimBoylan
 
If you mean both operated by electricity and abandoned after Jan. 21, 1963, add Texas Transportation Co. in San Antonio, which served the Pearl Brewery.
Yakima (Wash.) Valley Transportation's status is ambiguous, since it is still sometimes running as a tourist line.
Some lines that lost electricity before then were abandoned later, or are still running today.
  by dinwitty
 
I think there are some elements of the South Shore that are lost, like the Downtown South Bend street running and the East Chicago street running, and some smaller freight services. In contrast, we're seeing some resurgence, like Norfolk Virginia reviving the former Norfolk Southern electric line around the coast, they were surprised at the ridership, Portland Oregon keeps putting in new service, we have the Kenosha line and now Milwaukee with a short line. Who knows whaty may happen if we get more crowded with cars.
  by dan the ca railfan
 
dinwitty wrote:I think there are some elements of the South Shore that are lost, like the Downtown South Bend street running and the East Chicago street running, and some smaller freight services. In contrast, we're seeing some resurgence, like Norfolk Virginia reviving the former Norfolk Southern electric line around the coast, they were surprised at the ridership, Portland Oregon keeps putting in new service, we have the Kenosha line and now Milwaukee with a short line. Who knows whaty may happen if we get more crowded with cars.
the longest interburban line i can think of is the San fransisco cable car system although only two of the lines will remain i think if proposition e goes through
  by CarterB
 
dinwitty wrote: the longest interburban line i can think of is the San fransisco cable car system although only two of the lines will remain i think if proposition e goes through
Cable car line never was nor is an interurban.
  by ExCon90
 
dan the ca railfan wrote:the longest interburban line i can think of is the San fransisco cable car system although only two of the lines will remain i think if proposition e goes through
What is Proposition E? I can't find anything on it. And in any case, since I believe the cable car system is officially a National Monument, can a San Francisco city or county proposition have any effect?
  by CarterB
 
mtuandrew wrote:In response to the original question, the Illinois Terminal was mostly abandoned in the 1980s, well after the CNSM. It became a freight-only diesel railroad in 1956 though.
True, as such, however technically only as a diesel power freight only railroad. Real Interurban was abandoned, under wire, in 1956, with a few suburban St. Louis street car operations for another year or two.
  by mtuandrew
 
CarterB wrote:True, as such, however technically only as a diesel power freight only railroad. Real Interurban was abandoned, under wire, in 1956, with a few suburban St. Louis street car operations for another year or two.
And therein lies the question. Does an interurban cease to be an interurban when passenger service ends, when electrification ends, when upgraded to full heavy railroad standards (i.e. South Shore) or made part of a larger transit system (Skokie Swift or NHSL), when cut back to strictly local service, or only when abandoned? Any one of those could happen without affecting the others, except obviously abandonment.
  by CarterB
 
mtuandrew wrote:
CarterB wrote:True, as such, however technically othenly as a diesel power freight only railroad. Real Interurban was abandoned, under wire, in 1956, with a few suburban St. Louis street car operations for another year or two.
And therein lies the question. Does an interurban cease to be an interurban when passenger service ends, when electrification ends, when upgraded to full heavy railroad standards (i.e. South Shore) or made part of a larger transit system (Skokie Swift or NHSL), when cut back to strictly local service, or only when abandoned? Any one of those could happen without affecting the others, except obviously abandonment.
IMHO, interurbans cease to be such when they de-electify. Thus South Shore is still technically an "interurban" as would be the Skokie Swift...both of which operate outside the Chicago city limits and indeed to other towns. Thus, electric operations extended outside city limits.
  by mtuandrew
 
CarterB wrote:IMHO, interurbans cease to be such when they de-electify. Thus South Shore is still technically an "interurban" as would be the Skokie Swift...both of which operate outside the Chicago city limits and indeed to other towns. Thus, electric operations extended outside city limits.
So that makes Iowa Traction an interurban too, if I read you correctly. No LCL freight anymore, but it still runs under low-voltage DC.

What about the East Troy? I see how it could be one, but it’s first and foremost a museum in my mind since it doesn’t carry passengers or freight to/from anywhere as a primary function.