Discussion relating to the D&H. For more information, please visit the Bridge Line Historical Society.

Moderator: MEC407

  by Sylvain727
What about the former D&H Colonie Shops in New York State ?
Is there a revitalization for this former trains shops like
a residential and commercial projects or only residential projects
including the complete decontamination of lots ?

I hope that this site has an interest for their citizens that lives
near this former D&H train shops.

It could be have a museum recounting the heyday of these
train plants in this surburb of Albany.
  by Dieter
I really don't know. I was under the impression that the facility was under the control of NY State DOT.

  by Benjamin Maggi
I am not sure who owns the property now (I believe that when CP purchased the property from Guilford they specifically said they didn't want the Colonie shops) but I can say that aside from the several fires that have occured in the past 10 years not much has happened to the area. "Recent" developments include putting chains across the old dirt entry road to keep cars out which occured sometime after Fall of 2004... before then, cars had the ability to drive in and out and picture opportunities were there (though I am not sure how legal it was). Perhaps that is why the chain is there now. At that time, it wasn't much to see. It hasn't gotten better over the years, because at least one fire since then has caused more damage.

CP did install a turnout to free a trapped locomotive on one of the tracks parallel to the mainline (a victim of the local NRHS chapter... enough said) but they pulled the switch out after getting the FA engine free. I think they also added another controlled siding in the area, but that is not in the Colonie Shops proper.

I live here and have not seen anything in the paper or online speaking of developing the area. Considering that as I type this more of the Alco plant in Schenectady is being torn down, it is just another railroad building in an ex-railroad city. Personally, with all of the environmental issues surrounding an old railroad yard I am not surprised that no one wants to do anything with it. The clean up bill will be enormous when someone steps up to do it!
  by Benjamin Maggi
I forgot to mention... the Alco shops are being torn down as part of a plan to turn the area into Condos... I doubt it will happen in this market but what I was getting at is that if the State wanted to get involved in turning railroad buildings into something else with State funds it would probably go to Schenectady, not Colonie, first.
  by Engineer Spike
Most of the buildings are gone. I had a piggyback train headed to Guilford one day. A B&M cop came by to check the seals on the trailers. He told me that there was a building on the property, where he had an office. He sounded like they wanted to phase it out.
  by JWKessler
Benjamin Maggi wrote:The clean up bill will be enormous when someone steps up to do it!
The railroads may be getting a bad rap for the pollution on their property.

I once worked in a factory that was located near the D&H Bevier St yard in Binghamton. At one time the rail yard was considered by some employees (not management) to be a convenient place to dispose of any waste chemicals (solvents typically) they might end up with. Just pour the stuff in an old coffee can, take a short walk, come back with an empty can. Illegal as hell but that is the kind of thing that goes on in the real world.

A relative worked at another factory in the area and they maintained a 50 gallon drum that all their toxic chemicals went into. The barrel sat outside next to the tracks. When the barrel got too full it would "accidentally fall over". Cheap waste disposal.

Still, that isn't as bad as the stories I heard about one of the big military aircraft factories on Long Island. I was told by workers there then they drilled a well and just dumped all the toxic wast down that. The theory was that nature would purify everything.
  by Benjamin Maggi
While what you are saying may be true, it is common knowledge that areas around old locomotive facilities are frequently contaminated with chemicals and pollutants. Even regular automobile gas stations suffer from this problem. Whatever other places did to possibly contaminate Colonie Shops, I am sure they did they fair share. As noted in other posts on this forum [take them for what they are and nothing more], CP at the time it purchased the D&H assets specifically did not purchase Colonie because of the potential environmental liabilities it would be assuming.

This speaks nothing to another fundamental issue in the original post: who would want expensive condos in the middle of Watervliet/Colonie/Menands? It isn't by a the Mohawk River (Schenectady), it isn't overlooking a majestic gorge and waterfall (Cohoes Falls) and it isn't downtown next to the Hudson... three locations where expensive condos are either slated to be built or are currently underway. While railfans might want to live in a rundown portion of Watervliet next to an armory and a railroad, not many others would.

Just my opinion.
  by PappyWagner
Bringing up a dead subject, but who actually owns the property now ?
  by newpylong
http://www.fsihost.com/colonie/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Tax Parcels
Print Key: 44.10-1-32.1
Property Address: 950 5th St
Owner 1: Guilford Trans Ind
Owner 2:
Mailing Address 1: Iron Horse Park
Mailing Address 2:
Mailing City: North Billerica
Mailing State: MA
Mailing ZIP: 01862
School District: Watervliet
Acreage: 82.099998
Property Class Code: 449
Municipality: Town of Colonie
  by Backshophoss
That makes Guiford/PAR still on the hook for enviromental clean-up at the site.
  by NRGeep
What is the most direct route by car to Old Colonie from downtown Albany?
  by newpylong
Broadway...take 1'st street once in Watervliet and you're there.