mcgrath618 wrote:Did SEPTA trackage rights along the line just become null and void when they stopped diesel service?
Conrail owned the line and the service and contracted SEPTA to be the operator. Conrail actually abandoned the passenger service to Pottstown in 1981 before they spun the passenger rail system off to SEPTA in '83 so they kept ownership of the ROW and there were no rights to negotiate or change hands.
EKT: You have this backwards: Conrail operated commuter trains for SEPTA under contract. When
funding for the diesel routes ended - and counties outside the 5 county SEPTA area and the state
declined to subsidize the former Reading diesel routes. The service would be cut back to Pottstown
and Quakertown but when Montgomery and Bucks Counties would not further fund these lines it
then ended during the summer of 1981. The entire SEPTA RRD system saw cutbacks in 1981.
The early 1980s were probably the toughest years in the history of passenger rail services in SE
Pennsylvania - three SEPTA fare increases totaling more then 50 percent over the course of just
over a year (1980 had the highest inflation rate in recent U.S. history) caused a large decrease
in ridership and with Conrail contract operation costs steadily rising along with neglect of railroad
infrastructure the SEPTA Regional Rail system as a whole's survival was once threatened.
Conrail owned the ROW on the Reading-Pottsville route. At the beginning of 1983 SEPTA decided
to take direct control of their rail service instead of hiring another contractor (Amtrak Commuter
was going to likely take control) when Conrail exited operating passenger rail services for SEPTA,
NJT and what would become the Metro-North Commuter Railroad which was mandated by law.
EXPRESS TRAIN TO NEW YORK PENN STATION-NO JAMAICA ON THIS TRAIN-PLEASE STAND CLEAR OF THE CLOSING TRAIN DOORS