• Wacky idea: Abandon CSX main through Rochester?

  • 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

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  by Matt Langworthy
 
BR&P wrote:
Matt Langworthy wrote:I am heeding what Noel has to say, as far as track is concerned. He worked on the Water Level Route under 3 different owners, and thus has experience with operations on the line. ;)
Well, I used to know a little about operations on the line, too. Image
Noel has done so more recently. ;)
BR&P wrote:Matt, you fail to recognize the concept behind this whole hypothetical thread - the railroad has CHANGED.
No, you fail to recognize that CSX has been mostly status quo for the past 10 years. I photograph CSX regularly and talk to their employees, too. The customer base is far from what was in 1976 (or even 1986 for that matter) but the wholesale exodus of the manufacturing bases is largely over.

I think your approaching this whole thing with a 1970s mindset- there was alot of excess track in those days and it had to be addressed. Not so now.
BR&P wrote: Saying they need to keep Goodman Street Yard because 10 years ago FGLK's Lyons traffic was handled there has no bearing on today's reality.


That comment fails to recognize the other traffic I mentioned- OMID, Perinton landfill, etc. which IS happening now.
BR&P wrote:My guess is that with or without Harrison, in 5 years or less CSX will abandon the Charlotte Branch. Once Kodak is fully converted to gas and coal is all gone, there's no reason to keep it. Kodak traffic will be given to R&S for delivery.


With R&S owning the KPRR, it is just a matter of time until the Charlotte Runner south of Eastman Business Park disappears. (The segment servicing Weyerhauser may live on, but that's also a subject for another thread IMO.) However, the need for service to EBP will continue and traffic might even grow if EBP is marketed properly. Among other things, Lidestri Foods moved from Dundee (on NS) to EBP a few years back. And this brings up an overlooked element to the discussion- what if future growth happens? How much room is there for expansion? Goodman Street will be better equipped to handle it than Genesee Junction IMO. There is no way to tell what the future holds. Did anyone in 1976 foresee Conrail being the subject of takeover battle by 2 other carriers 20 years later. I'm not a fan of minimalism, which your concept espouses. It's shortsighted and inflexible. I will give you credit for admitting it's wacky.
  by C2629
 
First off remember this thread is a what if fantasy thread. I will add to what BR&P says, things change over time. In the 1960's there were three turn jobs that worked the Falls Rd. They would often sit one behind the other at CP35 waiting to head west on the Falls Rd. Today the Falls Rd. as it was and the customers and trains are gone and not coming back. Unfortunately many railfans think as railfans and live in the past, a fantasy land of wishful thinking and hoping. Changes will come to the Rochester rail scene, some we may like, others we will hate. But the changes will come and there is nothing we as railfans can do about them.
  by BR&P
 
The Class I's in many cases increasingly see themselves as the wholesalers - they want to move large blocks or entire trains from A to Z. They are less interested in switching loose cars into small customers. Once coal has stopped moving, CSX may be very willing to let R&S take the traffic to the former Kodak facility (which I will refer to as Kodak for simplicity's sake). If CSX gets the long haul, it may be well worth their while to pay a small part of that to R&S for local delivery.

I'm not up to date but I recently heard the salt was going to continue to move via Lincoln Park while CSX was going to interchange the miscellaneous traffic to R&S at Genesee Jct. If that happens, or is happening, that's part of the idea happening already.

As for OMID and the trash, I mentioned in a previous post the concept of a CSX local based at Lyons or at the Junction which would work between Genesee Jct and Lyons as needed.
I'm not a fan of minimalism, which your concept espouses. It's shortsighted and inflexible. I will give you credit for admitting it's wacky.
There are many examples of railroads eliminating lines and facilities which later would have proved helpful. On the other hand there are reasons why eliminating surplus facilities makes sense. Goodman Street Yard is in a poor location, as is the Amtrak station. Trains stopping at CP373 and other locations are subject to theft before the wheels even stop turning. Eliminating about 30 miles of right-of-way, the maintenance of about 20 grade crossings and their protection, the liability issues of those grade crossings and trespass risks along the whole way would all be worth considering. Being able to keep the traffic (except for actual switching of customers) is a plus. Quite likely the City would jump on a bandwagon if someone came up with a plan to turn the top of the falls into some sort of park or attraction. Likewise the city would probably get all excited about taking down the elevated ROW and removing those low bridges that truck drivers can't seem to squeeze under.

I'm not using a 1970's mindset. It's just that the existing main line is not in the best location, and as times and conditions change there is less and less need for some of what is there now. In many places there are no other options. In this case, the West Shore and R&S offer some possible solutions.
  by Matt Langworthy
 
I'm not thinking with a 1960s mindset. On the other hand, I refuse to be doom and gloom. The worst of the decline is over for NY. We don't know where we go from here, which is why I can't support a fantasy cut to the rail network. And I don't want my dividends being cut to pay for this project. Bird in hand is worth 2 in the bush.

It should also be noted that while oil and ethanol trains aren't local, they more than compensate for coal traffic.
  by Matt Langworthy
 
BR&P wrote:I'm not up to date but I recently heard the salt was going to continue to move via Lincoln Park while CSX was going to interchange the miscellaneous traffic to R&S at Genesee Jct. If that happens, or is happening, that's part of the idea happening already.
It doesn't appear to be happening, based on what I've seen at Genesee Junction recently.
BR&P wrote:Trains stopping at CP373 and other locations are subject to theft before the wheels even stop turning.
RR yards are magnets for theft, regardless of location. And if you think crime can't happen outside an urban area, please pick up an issue of The Times Of Wayne County. The crime section is enlightening. Your plan just moves the attraction for crime from one location to another. BTW, Lyons is in Wayne County.
BR&P wrote:Trains stopping at CP373 and other locations are subject to theft before the wheels even stop turning. Eliminating about 30 miles of right-of-way, the maintenance of about 20 grade crossings and their protection, the liability issues of those grade crossings and trespass risks along the whole way would all be worth considering.
As you say, the ROW is elevated for the mainline itself in Rochester. Thus there are relatively few crossings to consider there. (The Charlotte Runner has quite a few crossings, but that discussion really worthy of a separate thread.) The issue for CSX is that they would probably retain ownership of the ROW. Given the age of the line, there's a high probability the land was an outright purchase, rather than an easement. This scenario is already the case for the Falls Road between Brockport and Lee Road, which CSX inherited from Conrail. Speaking of high odds, there's also a 99% chance of Goodman Street being a brownfield. Cleaning up the property will be very expensive and there could be longterm liability for CSX after they sell it. Generating more capital expenditures and liability won't please the shareholders.

I have also noticed that majority of trespassing-related deaths seem to occur in the Fairport area. Your plan won't stop those who want to commit suicide by stepping in front of a train.
BR&P wrote:Quite likely the City would jump on a bandwagon if someone came up with a plan to turn the top of the falls into some sort of park or attraction.
While I am a fan of urban renewal, Rochester is starting to outpace itself in terms of development. I'd rather see the currently open parcels get developed first. I also don't see the current mayor as having the competency to pull off a tourist attraction at the falls.
  by BR&P
 
I've got a whole bunch of stuff coming up that's going to keep me busy - storm damage claim, restoring the old truck, working on the book, etc. So I'll let you have the last word on this one, Matt. Maybe when things get caught up I'll start another thread, suggesting they put back a third track on the 4-track ROW between Fairport and Chili Jct, and abandon the West Shore. Image
  by charlie6017
 
BR&P wrote:I've got a whole bunch of stuff coming up that's going to keep me busy - storm damage claim, restoring the old truck, working on the book, etc. So I'll let you have the last word on this one, Matt. Maybe when things get caught up I'll start another thread, suggesting they put back a third track on the 4-track ROW between Fairport and Chili Jct, and abandon the West Shore. Image
  by Matt Langworthy
 
BR&P wrote:I've got a whole bunch of stuff coming up that's going to keep me busy - storm damage claim, restoring the old truck, working on the book, etc. So I'll let you have the last word on this one, Matt. Maybe when things get caught up I'll start another thread, suggesting they put back a third track on the 4-track ROW between Fairport and Chili Jct, and abandon the West Shore. Image
Image
  by Otto Vondrak
 
Has anyone discussed the lack of road access into Genesee Junction Yard? Goodman Street Yard has transload customers (Genesee Brewery for one), how would Genesee Junction handle transload? Trucks would have a hard time getting in and out of the tight quarters.

-otto-
  by charlie6017
 
Otto Vondrak wrote:Has anyone discussed the lack of road access into Genesee Junction Yard? Goodman Street Yard has transload customers (Genesee Brewery for one), how would Genesee Junction handle transload? Trucks would have a hard time getting in and out of the tight quarters.

-otto-
That's a great point. The only road that comes close enough to Genesee Jct. is Paul Road, where it loops around. Of course that's
on the wrong side being on the north side of the main.

But since this is all hypothetical (Right? RIGHT?), the only way I could envision having road access to the junction is
building a road right next to the R&S main from Ballantyne Road and run it north from there to the interchange. Certainly
that would require clearing out some trees, and slapping a plate girder bridge over the creek.

Charlie
  by sd80mac
 
Matt Langworthy wrote:I have seen backed up trains on the triple track at Bayview Road. Since you are my FB friend, I invite you to take a look at the photos I shot at Bayview last October, because there was a back-up! If you dig back further, you'll see other back-ups at the same location. :wink:

NS's traffic level has been discussed and beaten to death in other threads, so I won't reopen that can of worms.
That's good to hear. I was hoping that they would be still useful, especially with less manifest trains AND coal trains we are seeing now. I guess that I wasn't there at the right time (or on right day in this case)..
  by sd80mac
 
BR&P wrote: Goodman Street Yard is in a poor location, as is the Amtrak station.

I would say that it has been always like that for many years.. Why didn't they (NYC) do something about that...

If NYC can relocate their mainline 2 times in Syracuse and yard from Syracuse downtown to DeWitt. Then they could had done that with Goodman yard. When they moved the mainline for last time, I know it's on taxpayers' money (or at least large chuck of that). but I cant speak of who paid for the move from street running to where 690 is.
  by tzh21y
 
I was out at Frontier yard this past week and saw 7 trains on the Chicago main in an hour. That s a lot of trains in a short period. I used to frequent the yard when Conrail operated there and things are picking up. This line is going nowhere. Solar City is a huge plant opening this summer and I am sure that will increase rail use exponentially.
  by scottychaos
 
Matt Langworthy wrote: Third, one item that we never firmly established in our last debate on this subject was the acreage currently being used at Goodman Street vs what is available at Genesee Junction. I'd love to know the actual sizes of both yards. It should be noted that the Genesee Valley Greenway occupies some of the former yard. We've seen the power of the trail advocates elsewhere. Does anyone think they won't fight tooth and nail if CSX wants to reacquire the Greenway to expand the yard at Genesee Junction?
Im curious about this too..so I did the math! ;)
I expected Goodman street yard to be WAY bigger than Genesee Junction yard..but surprisingly, it isnt!
They are essentially the same length..
Goodman street yard could be replicated at Genesee Junction fairly "easily", in terms of real estate needed.

Goodman street yard is One mile long, between the Main street overpass and Winton road.
It is 1/10 of a mile wide at its widest point, with a maximum of about 20 tracks across, including the two mainline tracks.

Genesee Junction, from the B&O/R&S overpass, to the Genesee River, is *more* than a mile! 1.12 miles.

Here is a photo of both yards, to (about) the same scale:

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-66G ... 6GC46Z.png" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

You wouldn't be able to built south of Genesee Junction yard, because of the creek, so it would all have to be on the North side..Paul road would probably need to be moved a bit further north, and the Airport might have something to say about that..but..from a strictly theoretical "could Goodman street yard capacity/real estate/acreage be replicated at Genesee Junction? Is there enough room?" ..the answer is, yes, enough land is technically there to do it.

Map #2:
https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-S9q ... 9qLgXz.png" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Length isnt a major problem..Width would need to be increased, but the space is there.

Scot
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