• CSX Boston and Albany Line

  • Discussion of the operations of CSX Transportation, from 1980 to the present. Official site can be found here: CSXT.COM.
Discussion of the operations of CSX Transportation, from 1980 to the present. Official site can be found here: CSXT.COM.

Moderator: MBTA F40PH-2C 1050

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  by Stp243
 
Ironman wrote:Yes, that's it. Five new tracks being built, switch still exists but the frog will have to be replaced. It's one of the special frogs that strongly favor the straight move, I think it's called a jump frog.
Western Recycle's project looks to be completed as there was a string of C&D cars spotted at the facility as of last weekend. Its great to see new online business in this area, seems like for my whole life (34y/o) I've only seen customers close down or move away from this area. I remember as a kid seeing boxcars spotted at what is now WestRock on Parker St in Springfield. The adjacent tracks were raised for an underpass project so I doubt we'd see them come online again.
  by bostontrainguy
 
Checking satellite maps, I see no rail at this facility. I will assume there was a siding built here?
  by Stp243
 
bostontrainguy, yes a new siding was built there over the past 6 months or so. There was already a switch in place just east of the Old Boston Road overpass. That switch was how the Ludlow Mills were accessed from the B&A way back when and it can be seen on Google Maps. The current map does not show the new configuration.
  by QB 52.32
 
Mini-LandBridge (MLB) container traffic from West coast ports has re-emerged on the B&A during the past few months with a box or more most days. A trickle compared with the 1990's heyday torrent before west coast transloading into domestic containers or re-routing to all water via the Suez or Panama Canals and East coast ports, but noteworthy nonetheless. CSX CEO Foote has spoken of this traffic target as an early initiative in their intermodal business pivot. Would imagine it targets traffic with a need for speed. Also appears Estes has recently joined FedEx Freight, UPS Freight and R&L use of the B&A for linehaul LTL movements.
  by Jedijk88
 
Its great to see new online business in this area, seems like for my whole life (34y/o) I've only seen customers close down or move away from this area. I remember as a kid seeing boxcars spotted at what is now WestRock on Parker St in Springfield
As a side note, business at Sulco-Lancer Warehouse off Roosevelt Ave seems to be busy most days with boxcars spotted on both sidings. I believe they are getting reefers now. Not sure if their other warehouse off Cottage St. still receives cars.
  by Stp243
 
Not exactly on the B&A but does anyone know what happened at the Robbins Road (Springfield) crossing on the Athol Branch last night (10/16)? The Eastman local (don't know its symbol) was parked just east of the crossing for more than 24 hours. Never seen a train lay over there before. Also, there were city DPW trucks and Springfield Police gaurding the (flashing) crossing. The whole scene looked odd.
  by QB 52.32
 
Besides re-routes and extra trains, lots of big trains running over the B&A during this time of Canadian blockades and the Hoosac Tunnel collapse. Plenty of freights running with 125-150 cars with one westbound moving Framingham and Barbers traffic approaching 190 cars, many of them loaded. On the intermodal side plenty of trains handling 225-250 trailers and containers with at least a couple getting up in the 275-300 range. And, on the autorack side, one eastbound ran just shy of 120 cars.
  by bostontrainguy
 
QB 52.32 wrote: Sun Mar 15, 2020 5:59 am Besides re-routes and extra trains, lots of big trains running over the B&A during this time of Canadian blockades and the Hoosac Tunnel collapse. Plenty of freights running with 125-150 cars with one westbound moving Framingham and Barbers traffic approaching 190 cars, many of them loaded. On the intermodal side plenty of trains handling 225-250 trailers and containers with at least a couple getting up in the 275-300 range. And, on the autorack side, one eastbound ran just shy of 120 cars.
Probably going to be some really interesting videos on YouTube very soon.
  by roberttosh
 
QB 52.32 wrote: Sun Mar 15, 2020 5:59 am Besides re-routes and extra trains, lots of big trains running over the B&A during this time of Canadian blockades and the Hoosac Tunnel collapse. Plenty of freights running with 125-150 cars with one westbound moving Framingham and Barbers traffic approaching 190 cars, many of them loaded. On the intermodal side plenty of trains handling 225-250 trailers and containers with at least a couple getting up in the 275-300 range. And, on the autorack side, one eastbound ran just shy of 120 cars.
Just like the old Conrail days.....
  by Backshophoss
 
PAR/PAS and CSX are beginning to get "Prickly" with each other over the detour trains,the tunnel yields more surprises as repairs continue.
The VTR/GMRC detours are sent to Canada now for reasons unknown.
  by Stp243
 
bostontrainguy wrote: Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:47 pm
Stp243 wrote:Over the past 2 weeks I've noticed some work going on next to 291 in Springfield along the Joseph Freeman spur (branches off the B&A so I figured this is the proper place). Trees cleared, terrain leveled extending from the current spur into the Republic trash services property. Is CSX gaining a new customer here?
Not for CRCC?
Update on this project: New railbed has been completed and crews are currently laying rail into Republic's facility. Switches are still incomplete. It looks like CRCC will be getting a connection out of this since rail/ties are being laid on their property as well and the barriers (trees/fences/retaining wall) separating the two properties have been removed.

I know that Republic currently trucks their trash containers to Holyoke for transfer to Pan Am, I'm guessing this new connection will replace the trucks.
  by roberttosh
 
When the economy comes back West Springfield yard should see a good boost in local traffic with the former Western Recycling C&D operation ramping up as well as this Republic facility coming on line, both of which should be shipping dozens of cars per week. At some point Q425 isn't going to be able to handle all this business as it is already one of the longer trains running over the B&A.
  by QB 52.32
 
Interesting and incredible to watch the traffic roller coaster play out on the B&A from the surge created by the Canadian blockades and Hoosac Tunnel collapse to the quick drop created by the Covid-19 pandemic, all within a matter of weeks, and how CSX has responded. Initial hits appeared on the intermodal side, then crushed auto traffic volume and now it has worked into carload merchandise volume as well.

The B&A at this point basically is down to ~4 daily round trip train sets with Q020 (TV14) handling Q022 (TV6) traffic as well, Q012 (TV10B) handling Q436 and P&W carload traffic as well, Q426 continuing to handle some overflow P&W traffic, and Q424 eastbound. Westbound Q161 (TV5) continues to handle P&W's carload traffic and now Q437 and Q427 carload traffic as well, Q017, Q019, and Q425. Acknowledging that the actual train symbols might be different reflecting the new plan, and the fluidity and flexibility hallmark of CSX's PSR management philosophy, this is the basic framework at this point in time and surely subject to change.

It reflects discontinuation of the dedicated auto trains, additional mixing of intermodal and carload traffic beyond the earlier Q161 handling of P&W carload traffic westbound only, consolidation of eastbound intermodal traffic, using Worcester as the jumping off point for the Q436/437 traffic with an additional G&U block and a round trip Framingham-Worcester local handling the G&U, Westboro and Framingham yard traffic instead of a road train, and the service challenge with Q012 also handling merchandise traffic. Lastly, it brings back recollection that some of the PSR tenets were in play years ago when Conrail mixed intermodal and carload traffic, running P&W merchandise traffic on TV6 during the early-1980's recession, though also the contrast at how nimble and obviously focused CSX is in making adjustments.
  by johnpbarlow
 
QB, just to clarify, are you saying Q436 departs Selkirk with a G&U block that the eastbound leg of the Framingham-Worcester local turn drops at N Grafton? Or does all G&U interchange traffic pass through Framingham? Thanks.
  by QB 52.32
 
Mr. Barlow, it was my understanding that Selkirk made a G&U block for Q436 at least a couple of times last week, but the situation is so dynamic that might not have been the case with the G&U's moving on the pre-Covid-19 but recent PSR change to move that traffic for the most part on a Q436 Westboro block. True to the saying that "the only thing that is constant is change", already how traffic is moving once again has changed. So, really, the only generalities that can be taken away are that Worcester is the hub for a number of iterations on how Barbers, Framingham, Westboro, G&U, and P&W traffic is handled, intermodal traffic might be combined amongst different intermodal trains, intermodal trains eastbound and westbound are handling carload traffic to a varying extent and in different combinations, and the auto trains have been discontinued. Obviously, CSX is being very focused and nimble in how they are moving traffic day-to-day. And, while many folks express disinterest and boredom not only with PSR, but now the impact of Covid-19, I find it fascinating.

Also fascinating is the impact of Covid-19 on CSX's intermodal business as played out on the B&A: relative uptick in some MLB traffic likely related to rushing Chinese product to market once they re-opened and an uptick and increased 28-foot pup trailer usage at times within the small-shipment segment of business.
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