Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Topics relating to the operation of the P&W Railroad, which is a subsidiary of Genesee and Wyoming. Regional freight railroad based in Worcester and operating in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New York.
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Willimantic Branch reactivation

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue May 29, 2007 11:46 am

Just saw a piece in Railpace (sorry, no link, subscription) on reactivation while a trestle was out. Will the line remain active? I was trying to locate it on a CDOT map with no luck. Can anyone tell me which line this is coming out of New London? Thanks.
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Postby shadyjay » Tue May 29, 2007 4:24 pm

Its the line connecting Willimantic to Plainfield via Versailles. It isn't straight across, but kind of dips down in a stretched-out U shape. The primary purpose for reactivation to Willimantic (it was active up to Versailles) is for the auto racks I believe, to come down the NECR and short-cut to P&W rails to reach Providence (by going north, then south).

Who knows - if enough traffic builds (when it does start), then maybe they'll reactivate the line from Plainfield east to Providence. Yeah, that'll happen right after they build I-84 to Providence :wink:
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Postby Noel Weaver » Tue May 29, 2007 7:55 pm

shadyjay wrote:Its the line connecting Willimantic to Plainfield via Versailles. It isn't straight across, but kind of dips down in a stretched-out U shape. The primary purpose for reactivation to Willimantic (it was active up to Versailles) is for the auto racks I believe, to come down the NECR and short-cut to P&W rails to reach Providence (by going north, then south).

Who knows - if enough traffic builds (when it does start), then maybe they'll reactivate the line from Plainfield east to Providence. Yeah, that'll happen right after they build I-84 to Providence :wink:


The line east of Plainfield has been torn up for many years and is highly
unlikely that anything will happen here.
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Postby Mr rt » Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:21 am

The Firends of P&W chat site has loads of photos relating to opening of Willimantic.
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Postby crij » Thu Jun 14, 2007 11:26 am

Sarge,

The trestle that was out was the one that leads from the New London Station to the New England Central Yard (ex-CVRy) under the Goldstone (Rt. 95) bridge.

IIRC it recieved a full set of ties.

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Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Jeff Smith » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:06 am

An interesting article; this really gives hope for future rail development in the region:

http://www.norwichbulletin.com/topnews/ ... z1VxUsDltT

As a Providence & Worcester railroad car rumbled through Willimantic Tuesday morning on its way to Sprague, those on board watched the vacant land streak by and thought of the future.

“There’s plenty of property where companies could come in and build new plants,” said Diane Nadeau, director of marketing for the Windham Region Chamber of Commerce. “This train ride was all about economic development in Windham and Willimantic, and a key factor in that is manufacturing.”

Nadeau’s agency helped put together the rail tour and invited officials including state Senate President Pro Tem. Donald Williams, D-Brooklyn, state Rep. Susan Johnson, D-Windham, and Sprague First Selectman Cathy Osten.

The Worcester, Mass.-based company maintains 312 miles of track in Connecticut, and in 2007 activated a 12-mile branch that runs from Plainfield to Willimantic that has seen traffic jump from 400 cars a year to 2,000.

Providence & Worcester has spent $5 million upgrading the line since the beginning of the year, to accommodate faster speeds and heavier capacities — moves officials say will bolster the prospects of economic growth in the area.

...

Earlier this year, Bernie Cartier, Providence & Worcester’s director of engineering, said the Plainfield-Willimantic line is one of the company’s most strategic, because it moves tonnage across the Northeast to an interchange that connects with Canadian and West Coast shippers.

“We want to be ready for the modern freight and rail-car traffic that companies use nowadays,” Cartier said.

Companies along the line include Rawson Materials in Plainfield, Dow Chemical in Ledyard, Amgraph and Fusion Paperboard in Sprague and Windham Materials in Willimantic, giving the route a steady customer base that’s ready to grow, Nadeau said.

Read more: Train tour pushes support for rail - Norwich, CT - The Bulletin http://www.norwichbulletin.com/archive/ ... z1VxWVcKvE
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Jeff Smith » Mon Sep 19, 2011 10:42 am

More good news for the Willimantic Branch of the Providence & Worcester:

http://www.norwichbulletin.com/newsnow/ ... z1YPPwQXp3

The Federal Railroad Administration Thursday released a $5.3 million grant to Eastern Connecticut that will be used to help pay for an upgrade to Providence & Worcester Railroad’s Willimantic spur.

The project seeks to improve track speeds from 10 mph to 40 mph in order to get more trucks off the road and improve efficiency for manufacturers along the line.


Read more: $5.3M grant to pay for railroad upgrade - Norwich, CT - The Bulletin http://www.norwichbulletin.com/archive/ ... z1YPhTrmda
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby MNCRR9000 » Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:58 pm

Thanks for posting the articles. That's great news for the area. It is going to be interesting to see what the future brings in terms of increased traffic.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:12 pm

Some public bows being taken: http://www.norwichbulletin.com/carousel ... z1ZASzsNSN

The federal money, along with $1.3 million from the rail company, will go toward improvements on 14 miles of tracks, from Willimantic through Windham, Scotland, Sprague, Lisbon, Canterbury and into Plainfield.

...

Frank Rogers, vice president of P&W, said Willimantic was once a major rail hub, with six lines running through it. Three lines remain today, but rail service had long been inactive in the area until 2007. Rogers said that in 1995, 400 trains connected at Willimantic’s interchange line, which connects to rail lines servicing elsewhere in New England and Canada. More than 4,000 trains connected through that line in a seven-month period this year.

Work to be completed with the grant money includes the installation of heavier rail, new ties and the replacement of some bridge decks. The improved line will be able to carry heavier loads at faster speeds, from 10 mph to 40 mph.

Read more: Funds for Windham-to-Plainfield rail project applauded - Norwich, CT - The Bulletin http://www.norwichbulletin.com/archive/ ... z1ZAqP9LoB
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:17 pm

Found an old topic I merged in on Willimantic.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Dick H » Wed Oct 19, 2011 7:43 am

There is supposed to be a combined VRS-NECR-P&W OCS today (10/19)
running from Rutland VT to Worcester. This move was scheduled for
early September, but Hurricane Irene had other ideas. Originally a
P&W loco and coach was to be part of the train. The P&W 4005 was
moved to VT a few days ago, but I have seen nothing that any P&W
coach was sent. The move is to highlght moving traffic from Montreal
to Worcester via the three railroads. Apparently, the details of the move
are being held close to the vest, as almost no details have been noted on
any of the railfan message boards, that I know of.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Dick H » Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:17 pm

The OCS was reported to be passing Belchertown MA around 1:15PM
with the P&W 4005 and two VRS coaches, including the "Mcintyre".
Will be heading to Willimantic to Plainfield and on to Worcester.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Lincoln78 » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:12 pm

Driving through Willimantic today (Sunday 12 FEB around 4:50) as I drove across the tracks I looked south in the yard and saw it empty. Just as I was turning on to 32 I heard a train horn and the gates went down. I was treated to southbound with three NECR engines and about twenty boxcars. All the boxcars were old with extensive graffiti- a couple names I hadn't seen in a while including two thatI estimate were originally Chicago and NW.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby Lincoln78 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:01 pm

4/11 Man killed on railroad tracks in Lisbon.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47019912/ns ... rtford_ct/

It appears that he may not have been trying to get out of the way. Not sure if this happened on the Willimantic Branch or the Norwich branch.
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Re: Rail Development Along Plainfield - Willimantic Branch

Postby The EGE » Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:27 pm

Bundy Hill Road intersects 12 right near the Norwich-Worcester mainline.
"Give me an unobstructed right-of-way and I'll show them how to move the earth!"
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