Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby $teve25 » Wed Jan 07, 2009 8:01 pm

What if there was a connection with the track that runs along the haul road and the south bay loop track, you could bring a train from the waterfront, loop it around and send it north, it crosses the bridge that spans the fort, sending it west towards Beacon Park. I guess it is just hypothetical, if there was some kind of profit motive in bringing back heavy rail traffic to the waterfront, it would have been done by now. The space for an expansive ship-rail facility just isn't there. The best bet, in my opinion would be the Conley container terminal. When the haul road track comes out under the W 2nd st. bridge, use a slight curve and put the track on W 1st st. to E 1st. st, its pretty much a straight shot to the container terminal
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby CSX Conductor » Tue Jan 13, 2009 3:45 pm

There used to be a track which connected the Dorchester Branch to the South Boston Industrial but it was removed when they rebuilt the Old Colony Lines. This is why you'd have to do the shift I mentioned above.
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby JUDGE DRED » Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:29 pm

Mr. Csx Conductor you are the MAN! Everyone on rr.net needs to donate a nickel so we can buy you a fruit basket and send it to your house!
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby CSX Conductor » Tue Jan 20, 2009 4:15 pm

Thanks Dred, I just try to help out as much as I can. I owned the local that serves South Boston (B733) as a regular assignment as both a conductor and then as engineer when I was there which is why I know many of the moves down there. :wink:
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby tom18287 » Thu Feb 12, 2009 7:12 pm

any updates on this?
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby CSX Conductor » Fri Feb 13, 2009 1:57 pm

With all of the freight railroads laying off across the country I doubt this project will ever be thought of for quite some time by CSX. Massport might still be interested, but I know for a fact that local CSXT management wants nothing to do with it. They don't even want to "be bothered" with their existing customers, never-mind new ones. :(
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby atsf sp » Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:47 pm

What would be the point of reopening this track? The area that it goes to does not have major industry anymore. The real intermodal port is across the water. And how many people would want to take a short line like this for passenger since that is all that is near the line with Black falcon cruise terminal. Maybe special moves for the ship repair down there but not much more. How much money would it even take to refurbish these tracks?
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby Tracer » Mon Aug 01, 2011 7:41 pm

Nothing new to report on this stretch of track, its still sleeping.
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby FatNoah » Thu Feb 16, 2012 9:29 am

I have no news, but I did find this link which is the most detailed document about track 61, possible plans, freight routings, etc. It's probably been posted in some other thread, but here it is anyway:

http://www.ctps.org/bostonmpo/5_meeting ... rridor.pdf

One thing stated in the doc. re: Conley Terminal rail access was that there was a spur to Conley in 1st Street. I didn't know such a thing existed, but you can see where the tracks go into Conley here:

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=boston,+m ... s&t=h&z=21

Maybe there will be a return of street running in the future to get rail to Conley (j/k, I know that's a nonstarter).
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby jaymac » Thu Feb 16, 2012 5:36 pm

30+ years ago with shorter cars and lighter maxes, running -- crawling, actually -- on 1st would have pretty much guaranteed going on the ground. Part of the problem was the pounding the street rail had taken from plowing, but there also was a large amount of differentiated settling. Remedying whatever the sub-base problems were/are would be one expense, but the liability issues of street-running are probably the deciding factor.
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:12 pm

Any Conley rail restoration is a long ways off, and would have to be supported by evidence that Track 61 generates viable business at Marine Industrial Park. As for street-running, if Conley access came back it wouldn't be on the same ROW it used to go. They'd branch off the Marine Industrial track at Drydock Ave., graft a small rail "annex" onto the side of the new Summer St. bridge, and go behind the power plant on all the empty industrial land...ROW in some way integrated with the Conley Haul Road they're planning sooner on that same back-lot stretch. Much saner layout than the old spur, better grade separation, better safety and less disruption to city streets, and (I guess) the Haul Road design would provision for it as a later add-on.

But...the business has got to be there before they consider it. Watch the Haul Road project as a litmus test since that's coming a lot sooner. If it gets good utilization and boosts business at Conley then the spur plan probably gains a little more priority...10-15 years from now and no sooner.


They can probably mitigate a little of the nutty parking lot-running on the Marine Industrial track by shifting the tracks to the outer parking spaces instead of right at the buildings' doorstep. CSX did the inspections in 2008 so I guess it's operable in its current configuration, but it'd be a lot less P.I.T.A. and block fewer parking spaces to move the tracks next to the sidewalk instead of keeping it under the building awnings. Those buildings are not going to be the ones taking loads this time around.
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby BOS-T-time » Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:15 pm

I always liked this photo of service on First Street in Southie:

http://photos.nerail.org/showpic/?20100 ... n&BOOL=ALL
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby bostontrainguy » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:14 pm

One of the most interesting things here is that 1st Street once had streetcar tracks on it. In a most unusual arrangement one of the railroad rails was in between the two rails of the westbound streetcar tracks. The awkward arrangement caused the military to request that the trolley tracks be removed during heavy wartime traffic.
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The single street-running railroad track remained in place a long time. I never saw a train on it, but I do remember the tracks being there. They ran in the street west to just before E Street where they cut across the corner of a parking lot and then ran through an open lot to D Street. Crossing D Street they ran along the edge of Cypher Street to the Haul Road tracks. The connection is still there.
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby GaryAF » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:31 am

Google shows 426 First Street as "Comcast" now. Geometry of the building looks the same, at least the western part.
I don't see any signs at all of paved-over tracks, at least, not on the Google street view.

This is wild! This Google street view shows "Comcast":
http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&bav=o ... CAkQ8gEwAA

while this one, a little further north, shows "Casey B. Hayes" (sp?):
http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&bav=o ... CAkQ8gEwAA
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Re: Boston Waterfront Industrial Track Reactivation

Postby GaryAF » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:36 am

Aaaarrrgggghhh!

I should have tested those links before posting them! They're effectively the same! Sorry!

Go to Google street view (the little yellow man) for 426 First Street: this shows the building as "Comcast".

Go a little 'north', to the intersection with Pappas Way: this shows the building as "Casey B. Hayes".

BTW, is this relevant or off topic?

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