There is no doubt in my mind that Conrail was a far better railroad than
CSX currently is. The UPS traffic got handeled even though there was
really no major railroad competetion over much of the Conrail territory,
they still handled it as though there was. TVLA, TV-10 and others really
moved along, good power, good signals and good trains.
CSX has allowed conditions to go downhill and it is truly a shame.
The impending takeover kind of hastened my retirement a little, having
gone from from the New Haven Railroad (bad enough) to Penn-Central
(which was much worse) to early Conrail before Crane (somewhat better)
to Conrail during and after Crane (much better, actually the best it ever
Metro-North fit in there for four year too but that showed me just how
waste there really is in government operations, expect that it has gotten
worse since I left there in 1987.
Conrail between 1987 and 1997 was a much better although somewhat
slimmed down, operation than in its earlier years. Was it perfect, of
course not, but everyone I have talked with agrees that it was better
under Conrail and they were better off then than today.