Pan Am Worcester Branch

Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:33 pm

If this is going to become the new normal--and it most definitely will if the system gets partitioned in sale--MassDOT's almost certainly going to buy the branch and the P&W segment in Worcester for purposes of keeping the peace and avoiding any carrier staring contests over who pays what share for what upgrades. That's going to be the only sane move to get all oars consistently pulling in the same direction on maximizing the value of this interchange. And it'll be well worth the price of state control over infrastructure and planning given how large SEPO looms for D2 and competitive balance in a post-PAS universe.

It's not like the state's ever shied away from buying any line from anyone the second it comes available, so both PAR and P&W can put a "Wouldn't it be great if. . .?" bug in their ear and probably get quick action.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby johnpbarlow » Sun Dec 18, 2016 5:29 am

If CSX weren't in an austerity mode, it would seem as though it might be a candidate to purchase the Worcester Branch if it became available despite only operating two freights/day over the line. And in this imagined scenario, NS would, of course, own all of PAS and Hill yard...or maybe a joint CSX/NS Conrail Shared Assets kind of operation which should please the numerous Ayer shippers. But I'm making all this up.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby CPF363 » Sun Dec 18, 2016 6:32 pm

Trying to understand where all of the problems with the Worcester-Ayer-Gardner line really are? It not as if the line has really changed, if anything it has less traffic than it did years ago when Guilford and Conrail were running as many as eight daily moves over the line. Was the interchange a big issue then verses now? The most significant change has been CSX takes their train to Burncoat Street verses in the SENE/NESE days stopping at New Bond Street so that P&W can have access to the Gardner Branch. Outside of that, all is essentially the same. What would make things better is if ST would fix up the line with some welded rail, ties and ballast in addition to taming and surfacing the whole route. And if they really wanted to, CSX could tie their line directly to the Ayer line and the P&W could connect their Gardner branch to their yard lead and remove the switch at Barber between the two, essentially creating a shared corridor between Union Station and Barber, but is that really all that necessary? P&W has been maintaining their part for all of these years so why should anything really change. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has enough track to look after, and incidentally pay for than taking over the WN&P.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jaymac » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:22 am

Dunno if it was for a rail-change, something more, or something less, but ~0945/12-29-2016, company hyrail boom and pickup just east of Shrewsbury Street XNG/MP X-6.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jwhite07 » Sun Feb 05, 2017 3:09 pm

Hearing distant horns sounding in grade crossing pattern from the general direction of Shrewsbury and Temple Streets on the Worcester Main this afternoon. Whether the line is reopened after the derailment or just another work train, I know not; too busy with "honey-do" to investigate further. But sounded promising...
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby KSmitty » Sun Feb 05, 2017 9:56 pm

Should be open. They ran the first SEPO up the Worcester Main Friday/Saturday overnight.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jaymac » Mon Feb 06, 2017 6:47 am

Between 0425 and 0635/02-06-2016 and with the usual caveats about Zombie Zones, there was nothing heard to, from, or about POSE/SEPO/Q426/Q427, including on CSX channels. When things are so-called normal, there is usually chatter during that time-period.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby johnhenry » Mon Feb 06, 2017 8:28 am

SEPO calling clear of MPX15 at 0820. Seems roughly back to normal.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby johnhenry » Fri Mar 03, 2017 10:45 am

Yesterday, four 4-axle units came down and pulled the last of the derailed dirt gondolas from the wreck site and dropped it off at the Clinton siding. The units then went back to Greendale siding where they parked ( I assume the crew outlawed) next to 3 other gondolas from the derailment and 3 box cars (bad order?) - I assume another crew will take all back to Ayer. Don't know why the abundance of power.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jaymac » Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:36 am

Dunno if it was from cleaning up the derailment site or for being staged for later work, but ~1100/03-03-2017 there were a regulator and tamper on the MOW -- old Ziff -- siding just east of the Shrewsbury Street crossing. There was a stone pile nearby and also a stack of new ties by the old stick rail on the other side of the crossing.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jwhite07 » Fri Mar 03, 2017 7:42 pm

The work equipment on the Ziff siding has been there for a while now, doing a good job of holding the rails down. A week? Maybe more? Ziff's a popular place to stick yellow-painted stuff in for any reason and have it sit forgotten for a while, so anything in there tends to quickly become barely-noticed scenery on my daily commute. They had a plow/regulator in there that they had used during the snows of 2015 that sat there for probably a year afterwards. My consciousness might not have even registered these recent arrivals except I'm usually passing by after dark and the critter on the end nearest the road has Scotchlite stripes that get picked up by my headlights real nice.

The pile-'o-ballast at the Temple Street crossing's still there too, looking much the same as it has since it showed up shortly after the derailment. That scenery did for some reason burn into my mind when I went by there on my ungodly-hour-that-begins-with-four embarkation to work this morning. I too presume the scenery alongside Temple and Shrewsbury are related and perhaps they're just waiting for better weather to make whatever repairs they did to reopen the line into something more durable and permanent.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby BandA » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:37 pm

Did they remove all the contaminated dirt that spilled? Or is this area now contaminated?
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jwhite07 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:13 pm

Did they remove all the contaminated dirt that spilled? Or is this area now contaminated?


According to sources including the West Boylston Fire Department, none of the derailed cars spilled their loads.
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby jwhite07 » Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:57 pm

Yesterday late afternoon there was a PAR company pickup truck parked at the Shrewsbury Street crossing, and the ballast regulator stored on the Ziff siding was fired up and with lights on. Prep for snowfighting use after today's blizzard?
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Re: Pan Am Worcester Branch

Postby johnhenry » Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:15 am

On Monday I heard a conversation between D3 and POSE about dropping their train at Burncoat and swapping power and then bringing the train down to Barbers. A bit later I drove by the area and witnessed 3 of the PanAm (old CSX) engines on the west end of Greendale siding with 3 CSX engines on the east end of same. I assume the PanAm's came from the POSE and the CSX's were going to be backed up to the train at Burncoat. In other words, a power swap. Does anyone know if this is going to be a regular occurrence? Oh yes, I also noted new ballast under the Greendale siding track. I also recollect seeing track equipment working there sometime within the last month.
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