MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Discussion about shortline operator Genesee Valley Transportation, operator of the Delaware-Lackawanna; the Mohawk, Adirondack & Northern, the Falls Road Railroad; Depew, Lancaster & Western; and the Lowville & Beaver River railroads. Official site: GVTRAIL.COM.

Moderator: metman499

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby joha107 » Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:31 pm

Anyone know what customers MA&N still serves out of Carthage/Lowville? I know Slack Chemical is still shipping by rail, but I don't know about the rest. CSX took 115 cars up there on Tuesday and MA&N took them up the Newton Falls line on Wednesday into storage, the storage line is as far south as Diana Center currently.
joha107
 
Posts: 186
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2005 8:22 pm
Location: Watertown, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby joha107 » Sun Aug 10, 2008 10:52 pm

Well as far as current customers I think I figured it out on my own, Slack Chemical is the main customer and it seems that Climax Paper in West Carthage also still receives a few deliveries a year. The Lowville line is being used for storage along with the Newton Falls line. However there was a meeting held recently on the future for this line and their was a better than expected turnout, article below.

http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/article/20080809/NEWS05/40081726/-1/NEWS/Interest+high+in+reviving+rail+line

Getting state funding could be difficult given the current budget, but it's at least good to see that there are multiple customers interested in rail service in this area.
joha107
 
Posts: 186
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2005 8:22 pm
Location: Watertown, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby RussNelson » Thu Sep 11, 2008 1:21 pm

An article from last Sunday's Advance News (Ogdensburg) says that the DOT estimates rehabilitation of the Newton Falls branch will cost $2.5M for class 1 and $7.5M for class 2. The Carthage yard needs improvement to accommodate the traffic: $2.5M to $3M. Plus the line needs new safety and warning devices: $2M (not sure if that's class 1 or class 2). They point out that a crew is likely to outlaw on a round-trip along the 44 mile line if it's only class 1. On the other hand you're talking about $5M extra, which pays for a lot of taxi rides.

Benson Mines apparently has already-mined rock that could be shipped, but only rail is cheap enough.
User avatar
RussNelson
 
Posts: 3786
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 1:20 am
Location: Potsdam, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby nessman » Thu Sep 11, 2008 2:22 pm

RussNelson wrote:An article from last Sunday's Advance News (Ogdensburg) says that the DOT estimates rehabilitation of the Newton Falls branch will cost $2.5M for class 1 and $7.5M for class 2. The Carthage yard needs improvement to accommodate the traffic: $2.5M to $3M. Plus the line needs new safety and warning devices: $2M (not sure if that's class 1 or class 2). They point out that a crew is likely to outlaw on a round-trip along the 44 mile line if it's only class 1. On the other hand you're talking about $5M extra, which pays for a lot of taxi rides.

Benson Mines apparently has already-mined rock that could be shipped, but only rail is cheap enough.

I'm all for rehabbing the line, but what is the estimated traffic count for what little business can be tapped?

Isn't the line IDA (county) owned? If so - they would be the recipients of the DOT $$$ and not the operator (MHWA). So the taxi ride argument doesn't hold water. Class 1 standards = 10 MPH, and the little traffic the line would likely see - doesn't really justify full highway grade crossing systems... crossbucks and flagging would be more than sufficient.

Point being, would a rehab of the line have a return on investment for the taxpayers? Would it bring in more jobs? Would it help the local economy?
nessman
 
Posts: 1676
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:58 pm
Location: Isle of Sodor

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby nessman » Sun Aug 02, 2009 8:25 pm

Was in the Lake Placid area this weekend... did a little sight seeing on the way back.

Stored cars for CSX to as far east as Diana (and beyond - but not as far as Harrisville - probably up to Lake Bonaparte), and as far west as Natural Bridge - but not as far as Carthage. ROW from Harrisville to Newton Falls is fairly overgrown.

A bunch of tank cars, a few hoppers and maybe a boxcar or two at the yard in Carthage. Saw an old Conrail caboose in the weeds at the yard and one of the LBR 44-tonners behind the engine house parked next to a Jordan spreader.
nessman
 
Posts: 1676
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:58 pm
Location: Isle of Sodor

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby tree68 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:50 pm

nessman wrote:A bunch of tank cars, a few hoppers and maybe a boxcar or two at the yard in Carthage. Saw an old Conrail caboose in the weeds at the yard and one of the LBR 44-tonners behind the engine house parked next to a Jordan spreader.

Caboose is privately owned and the owner is working on getting it out of there. The LBR 44 tonner sees occasional service at Carthage if traffic doesn't warrant firing up the big ALCO. The Jordan spreader works - it was used to clear brush away from the Newton Falls Line earlier this year. They were having problems with the brush lifting cut levers when they were moving stored cars.
Tree

Everyone Goes Home - Safety Begins With Me
Opinions are my own. No Expiration Date
tree68
 
Posts: 821
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 10:03 pm

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby RussNelson » Tue Sep 15, 2009 12:02 am

Last week, Clarkson University held a "Forever Wired" conference, for people interested in remote work but living in the Adirondacks. The folks from Newton Falls Paper were there. One of them was Gordon McLennan, Government Liason & Project Director. He explained that yes, indeed, not only did they want the tracks reopened and reconditioned, but they had a plan to use them.
User avatar
RussNelson
 
Posts: 3786
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 1:20 am
Location: Potsdam, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby RailKevin » Wed Sep 16, 2009 7:22 am

Is the Benson Mine located along the Newton Falls Branch?

Below is a link to a news release that says the Gold Canyon Company may be interested in the mine tailings. If true, then I wonder if it could increase the desirability of reopening the branch.

http://www.emediaworld.com/press_release/release_detail.php?id=742902
RailKevin
 
Posts: 196
Joined: Tue Dec 25, 2007 5:22 pm
Location: Medina, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby RussNelson » Wed Sep 16, 2009 6:54 pm

Yes, well, the problem with Benson Mines is that there's a huge plume of petroleum pollution underneath a bunch of it which will be very expensive to clean up. I think that right now they're monitoring it, and it's not moving, so there's no current action on it. On the other hand, there are large portions which are not polluted and suitable for industrial use, if only the right (rail-served!!) industry could locate there.
User avatar
RussNelson
 
Posts: 3786
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 1:20 am
Location: Potsdam, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby goodnightjohnwayne » Tue Oct 20, 2009 11:20 pm

RussNelson wrote:Last week, Clarkson University held a "Forever Wired" conference, for people interested in remote work but living in the Adirondacks. The folks from Newton Falls Paper were there. One of them was Gordon McLennan, Government Liason & Project Director. He explained that yes, indeed, not only did they want the tracks reopened and reconditioned, but they had a plan to use them.


Did he mention how many carloads per year of business they would provide?
goodnightjohnwayne
 
Posts: 1380
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 1:13 pm

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby RussNelson » Thu Oct 22, 2009 10:19 pm

Either he did and I don't remember, or he didn't say, sorry.
User avatar
RussNelson
 
Posts: 3786
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 1:20 am
Location: Potsdam, NY

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby goodnightjohnwayne » Fri Oct 23, 2009 1:31 pm

RussNelson wrote:Either he did and I don't remember, or he didn't say, sorry.


Interesting. Looking at historical figures, Newton Falls Paper Mill was never the major shipper on that line, with Benson Mines having about 10 times as many carloads of business. Considering that Newton Falls is working at a fraction of historical capacity today, they probably wouldn't forward and receive more than a couple hundred carloads per year, at best. Doing the math, for 45 miles of track from Carthage, that isn't enough business to justify $2.5 million to $7.5 million in public funds.

On the flip side, I'd contest the figures quoted for reactivation. We're talking about a branch with modern, heavy welded rail that was rebuilt for heavy ore trains that amounted to tens of thousands of carloads per year. Obviously, there will be a lot of reballasting due to the terrain (and wildlife), not to mention a huge number of rotten ties, but $7.5 million to restore this line to a 25 mph standard seems excessive.
goodnightjohnwayne
 
Posts: 1380
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 1:13 pm

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby tree68 » Sun Nov 15, 2009 7:20 pm

Assuming a worst case scenario that virtually all of the ties would require replacement, and figuring on replacing 2000 of the 3000 ties per mile to get to 25 mph, that figures in at $6.75M just in ties. That's using a figure of $75 per tie, installed, which may actually be low.

Plenty of variables, obviously, (like, it may not be necessary to replace more than 1000 ties per mile, f'rinstance) but there's one factor in the rehab of the line.
Tree

Everyone Goes Home - Safety Begins With Me
Opinions are my own. No Expiration Date
tree68
 
Posts: 821
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 10:03 pm

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby rhallock » Sat Jul 02, 2016 7:27 pm

This past Thursday I traveled parallel to the line from Carthage east. On the east side of Carthage there is a chemical company that is an active rail customer. Continuing to Natural Bridge I saw a large number of track machines parked for the evening and evidence of new tie replacement. At Harrisville, there were more new ties in place as well as a large number of new ties in bundles along the line. The former station there is now a historical society museum. At Oswegatchie there were no new ties but the brush had been cut. That was the last I could see of the railroad. However I found an article from the Watertown newspaper about a contract to rehab the line. It seems that the MA&N (MHWA) will not be part of the line. An independent contractor is doing the work. The plan is to haul old tailings from the Benson Mines area and provide rail service to Newton Falls paper mill. This is the third existing railroad in the Adirondacks region and receives little attention relative to the other two.
http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/news ... d-20160219
The line heading south out of Carthage looks very rusty so I would say that it has been out of service for some time.
rhallock
 
Posts: 87
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 2:19 pm

Re: MA&N line to Newton Falls status?

Postby nessman » Sat Jul 02, 2016 9:13 pm

According to the 2016 NYSDOT Railroad Map - the MHWA is still the line's operator.
nessman
 
Posts: 1676
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 10:58 pm
Location: Isle of Sodor

PreviousNext

Return to Genesee Valley Transportation Family (DLWR, FRR, MAN, DL)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests