What is being built here? Belfast, NY

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Re: What is being built here?

Postby Matt Langworthy » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:45 am

Conrail removed the River Line in 1981, which included demolishing the bridges.
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Re: What is being built here?

Postby pumpers » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:50 pm

mkirsch wrote:Another good place to sort it out is Craigslist, amazingly enough. Just find an ad on the Buffalo or Rochester site with a map in it, expand your browser to full screen, and expand the map to full screen.

For some reason those little maps contain all the abandoned rail lines. If you zoom out they are easier to see, but as you zoom in they almost disappear, but they are still there as almost white lines on a light gray background.

Remarkable. Here is one I found:
https://rochester.craigslist.org/d/gara ... search/gms
It seems sometimes different lines appear zoomed in and zoomed out. Looking around Belfast, depending if zoomed in and out you get the Erie River Line, the PRR Rochester branch, the Buffalo and Susquehanna (which only existed around 1907 - 1915 or so), and even the Lackawanna and Pittsburg, which went out before 1900. I wonder what database this possibly comes from, that would have such old lines.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby nydepot » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:16 am

Says right at the bottom. OpenStreetMap. One of our very own posters, Russ Nelson, feeds abandon rail lines into it. You see him frequently post when someone brings up newly explored trails and wanted to verify where track went.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby pumpers » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:52 am

nydepot wrote:Says right at the bottom. OpenStreetMap. One of our very own posters, Russ Nelson, feeds abandon rail lines into it. You see him frequently post when someone brings up newly explored trails and wanted to verify where track went.

Welll that makes a lot of sense, I don't know anyone better at it .
Last edited by pumpers on Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby mkirsch » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:15 pm

I'm guessing a lot of the old data existed previously, because those maps show abandoned and decommissioned rail lines literally everywhere.

The only other explanation is that Russ Nelson is a 2000 year old time lord that travels around in a London Police box. That'd be the only way he'd possibly have enough free time to incorporate the data into OpenStreetMap.

Unfortunately I know of no other way to get the abandoned/decommissioned rail line data without getting into all sorts of egghead programming. You can't just go to OpenStreetMap.com and look at it there.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby nydepot » Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:57 pm

Actually it is there it's just not labeled. Turn on the map data and everything pops up. Maybe if Russ finds this thread and shows us more.

mkirsch wrote:Unfortunately I know of no other way to get the abandoned/decommissioned rail line data without getting into all sorts of egghead programming. You can't just go to OpenStreetMap.com and look at it there.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby tree68 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:10 pm

I was going to point you to the NYS DOT Railroad map, but while the abandoned lines are shown, they aren't labelled...

https://www.dot.ny.gov/divisions/operating/opdm/passenger-rail/railroadsmap
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Re: What is being built here?

Postby Windseeker1 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:34 pm

Wayside wrote:That's how they did it, with teams of horses or mules pulling cartloads of fill out onto the trestle. Took skill and nerve to take a team out there and back.

The fill was dumped from above from side dumping gondola cars. The construction was well documented photographically. There are a number of pictures showing the trestle being built and fill being dumped over the side from above to cover it over.
Google “Erie trestle Belfast“ and then click on images. There are number of images shown from the Allegheny historical society. It’s too much of a PITA to post pictures here from a cell phone.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby mkirsch » Fri Jan 19, 2018 10:47 am

nydepot wrote:Actually it is there it's just not labeled. Turn on the map data and everything pops up. Maybe if Russ finds this thread and shows us more.

mkirsch wrote:Unfortunately I know of no other way to get the abandoned/decommissioned rail line data without getting into all sorts of egghead programming. You can't just go to OpenStreetMap.com and look at it there.


I've tried several times, turning on and off every option I could find, and never could get it to display the abandoned and decommissioned rail lines.

It's absolutely fascinating to see all the rail lines that used to criss-cross Western New York.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby BR&P » Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:00 am

mkirsch wrote:
It's absolutely depressing to see all the rail lines that used to criss-cross Western New York.


Fixed! Image
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby thebigham » Sat Jan 20, 2018 2:01 pm

nydepot and I spent a warm Saturday exploring the railroad grades around Belfast in 2002/2003.

The pricker bushes on the original PRR grade were awful.

We found the L&P (pre PS&N) in Belfast.

Tried to find the B&S tunnel on the Erie. I think it was eventually torn down and filled in.

We hiked the Erie to the abutment for the bridge across the valley.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby RussNelson » Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:32 pm

thebigham wrote:nydepot and I spent a warm Saturday exploring the railroad grades around Belfast in 2002/2003.

Jelly!
The pricker bushes on the original PRR grade were awful.


"original PRR grade"? You mean this one? https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/524836026 ? My notes on that line say "Alignment prior to 1922, when the tunnel underneath the Erie collapsed". I suspect that is referring to this photo:
http://gallery.alleganyhistory.org./gal ... 20Arch.jpg

We found the L&P (pre PS&N) in Belfast.

L&P? PS&N?
Tried to find the B&S tunnel on the Erie. I think it was eventually torn down and filled in.

From the photos linked-to earlier, it looks to have been an Erie bridge. http://gallery.alleganyhistory.org./gal ... elfast.jpg
We hiked the Erie to the abutment for the bridge across the valley.

Is it the really tall abutment here? http://gallery.alleganyhistory.org./gal ... elfast.jpg
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby Windseeker1 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 1:17 am

William Burt, an Erie railroad historian, wrote an excellent treaties on the building and operation of the river line. Included in the article were details about the construction, the difficulties encountered, the unstable soil the line was built on and the tunnel collapses and subsequent rerouting of competitors tracks. It was featured in three parts in the Erie Lackawanna historical society‘s magazine, “the diamond“. Copies can be purchased on eBay.
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Re: What is being built here? Belfast, NY

Postby pumpers » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:42 am

If I have it correct,

1. first there was a Genesee Valley canal, which was abandoned by the 1870s and the right of way was used for a RR around 1880. The RR did not exactly follow the canal ROW everywhere however. By 1900 is was part of the PRR

2. In the early 1900's, the Erie built the River Line, opening in 1910, with its big fill on the west side of what is now Route 19. The B&S and PRR had tunnels through the fill

3. In 1922, the PRR tunnel collapsed, and the PRR was re-routed eastwards to pass under the Erie trestle viaduct, just on the west side of 19, right near the west end of the trestle viaduct over the valley (east of the fill region).

If I am right so far, my questions are:
(a) Is the route of the PRR just north of Belfast, going through the fill, the original (~1880) RR route? (This refers to the straightline segment on the map Russ linked.) My guess is yes. Or was it re-routed from something else when the fill was built around 1910?
(b) Is the straightline segment the route of the original canal as well, or did the canal have that bend to the east which the later 1922 PRR re-route followed? I don't have any old canal maps.

Hope those questions make sense.
JS

And one more. Here is a Google streetview looking east from Route 19, at the piers for the old Erie River line trestle: https://www.google.com/maps/@42.355227, ... 312!8i6656
So where is (or was) the really tall abutment in Russ's old pictures? Buried in the trees on the west side of Route 19, gone now entirely, or on the other end of the viaduct (east side of the valley), nd perhaps also gone?
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