MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

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.

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MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby Alek9997 » Tue Mar 08, 2011 9:26 am

Has anyone heard anything else about this rumour? What I heard was that the Mohawk, Adirondack, And Northern Railroad (MHWA) was possibly going to purchase the NYS&W Utica Division, but NYS&W's asking price was too high. Has anyone heard anything to confirm or deny this rumour?
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby Steamtown Observer » Tue Mar 08, 2011 9:58 am

The NYS&W does not own either the Syracuse or Utica Branches. They are owned by the counties that the lines run through. I'm not sure what the terms are or how the counties could terminate NYS&W operations.

The rumor about the MA&N taking over the northern stub of the Utica Branch have been flying around since shortly after the washouts severed the line.
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby chrisnewhaven » Thu Sep 08, 2011 6:08 am

Although it wouldn't be too bad seeing MHWA Alco's running down the Utica Branch (especially if it's on of the ones DL painted into EL paint)!
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby RussNelson » Sun Sep 11, 2011 6:56 pm

My understanding is that the counties own the right-of-way, but NYS&W owns the tracks. Yes, really.
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby JoeCollege » Tue Sep 13, 2011 2:45 pm

RussNelson wrote:My understanding is that the counties own the right-of-way, but NYS&W owns the tracks. Yes, really.


You are correct. Walter Rich was shrewd, and the counties get screwed.
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby nessman » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:05 am

JoeCollege wrote:You are correct. Walter Rich was shrewd, and the counties get screwed.

"JoeCollege" - I'm guessing he is probably not much older than 19 or 20.

So how did the counties get screwed oh knowing one? It's a fairly common arrangement where the county IDA would own the ROW and tracks, and a private company would operate the railroad so industry could remain or expand or build in the area. Or would you prefer the alternative of the lines being abandoned outright, turned in to hiking trails, and NO rail service to the region and factories either close laying off hundreds of people, or resort to more costly 18 wheelers on the road?
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby cjvrr » Fri Sep 30, 2011 1:59 pm

Nessman,

Because the railroad owns the tracks, they can do with them what they want, including abandoning them, removing them, or leaving them unrepaired. The County still owns the property, but not the railroad tracks themselves. This is a very odd deal, but one Mr. Rich and the County negotiated.

If the County owned the tracks, there is not a doubt in my mind they would have been repaired long ago.
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby RSD15 » Fri Sep 30, 2011 2:46 pm

cjvrr wrote:
Because the railroad owns the tracks, they can do with them what they want, including abandoning them, removing them, or leaving them unrepaired. The County still owns the property, but not the railroad tracks themselves. This is a very odd deal, but one Mr. Rich and the County negotiated.

If the County owned the tracks, there is not a doubt in my mind they would have been repaired long ago.


So the county repaired the recent washouts in the Clayville area?
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Re: MHWA to but NYS&W Utica Division??

Postby JoeCollege » Mon Oct 03, 2011 10:12 am

nessman wrote:"JoeCollege" - I'm guessing he is probably not much older than 19 or 20.

So how did the counties get screwed oh knowing one? It's a fairly common arrangement where the county IDA would own the ROW and tracks, and a private company would operate the railroad so industry could remain or expand or build in the area. Or would you prefer the alternative of the lines being abandoned outright, turned in to hiking trails, and NO rail service to the region and factories either close laying off hundreds of people, or resort to more costly 18 wheelers on the road?


A guess nearly as accurate as my guess that you're a recipient of the coveted silver sow award, originally from Dayton, and a bespectacled member of the media. Double your guess, then add a few years, oh knowing one.

Chenango county got bent over and screwed good by DO Corp. (A) there were/are very few businesses in Chenango County that used rail. The discontinuation of service hasn't caused any industry to leave. (B) compared to an unused, weed choked eyesore, I actually would prefer a trail. What I'd actually prefer is service in place now that there's actually some potential demand in the area, but I'd also like the NYOW and UVRR back in place too, which I know ain't happening.

I'd prefer that my town, village, and school district didn't have PILOTS put in place that collected no revenue from DO Corp while the line was in use earning them some money to ship goods to Utica and Sangerfield from the south. So we kinda got screwed out of some money. And now that DO or whatever they're called owns the rail and ties, but doesn't want to use them, the county IDA can't either develop it's own property to its own use or seek other service providers who might be willing to make some infrastructure investments and contribute more than just the occasional eye candy for kooks like me that like to see trains.

Since there are really no jobs in our area dependent on rail, and I am able to see the bigger picture relevant to an area you don't live in, I guess I'm entitled to the opinion that any employer in the area who does want rail service now or in the future, is out of luck, thus screwing the county. The county is also screwed since they own blighted land with potential revenue on it (rail and I believe row for fiber optic lines DO kept) and they can't collect a nickel.

Walter Rich was a great business man, built a rail empire that is/was the envy of many, and by all accounts a really swell guy. I just think that the deal the counties settled for was a bust for them. I think other than the dog food company in Sherburne, the occasional lumber transload there, and the mills in Sangerfield, there were no customers most of the past 15-20 years in Chenango and Madison counties. Just a taxable revenue source of dubious local benefit. Since we hadn't received tax revenue, it wouldn't have mattered if they stopped in 1982 or 2006.

There is no bigger advocate of rail service than me. I'd like nothing more than to see GVT, LAL group, etc take over this line and get service going, serve the potential need of some new businesses, and maybe even employ some locals themselves. But I hope if the county can ever find a clause to exercise to gain full control of the line, that they consider not letting the lessee control capital infrastructure utilization so entirely.
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