• Pan Am Southern / Patriot Corridor Discussion

  • 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.
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.

Moderator: MEC407

  by F74265A
 
But the problem with Worcester route is double stacks, not racks. Was cleared for racks, but not stacks, over 30 years ago
  by F74265A
 
Safetee wrote: Sat Jun 04, 2022 2:15 pm And all of a sudden the prospect for modernizing the Hoosac Tunnel is looking betterer and betterer.
I’m not sure it changes the prospects for the tunnel in a material way. Most likely it would be cheaper to address a couple of trouble spots north of Worcester than to enlarge a nearly 5 mile long tunnel
  by newpylong
 
The difference is they actually own 50% of that investment that would happen to get the tunnel enlarged. Raising bridges over someone else's main is not the best use of capital funds.

If that is indeed the case (where undercutting is not possible), no question they will bag the trackage rights and spending all that coin to raise those bridges and rebuild the Albany Main + Connector. Better off putting the funds towards PAS.
  by Safetee
 
and lest we forget, with massdot in the wings virtually frothing at the thought of acquiring the line from wherever the t leaves off at Wachusetts?? to at least North Adams if not state line, I can see a three way stair way to heaven.
  by Safetee
 
I have not heard from any source that they don't want to sell it. in fact, i thought that csx had implied in their application that they were eager to dump their share of pas within x amount of time. And i don't see why if mass dot was to offer to fund a major part of the modernizing of the tunnel as a part of their purchase that NS would say we prefer to continue to go toe to toe with csx by single stacking.
  by newpylong
 
I should have said, "neither owner is interested in selling it to MassDOT." The only reason they got the Conn River aka Knowledge Corridor is because Pan Am was desperate for cash and they were barely running any trains so they took the carrot. Worked out well for them like usual. But that sale likely would not happen today.

There are too many strings attached to operating over state owned track. Neither owner needs the cash. The only and I mean only way I could see it happening is if the state funds 100% of raising the tunnel and all other restrictions plus an improvement (and ongoing maintenace costs) to Class 3.
  by BandA
 
I thought CSX was the party most motivated to upgrade the Worcester Main. As for selling row to the state, while retaining freight rights and getting free upgrades, yeah they will be interested.
  by newpylong
 
The Worcester Main is not PAS, which means it is even less desirable to sell for CSX. But the same applies, there has to be a large quantity of upgrades to even consider. We're talking clearance all the way to Stateline, etc. Class 3 for just 30 miles is not a big enough carrot, that's pocket change for CSX.
  by johnpbarlow
 
I scoured the STB's decision of April 14, 2022 that approved the CSX acquisition of Pan Am Railways, and there is one reference to the never executed NS trackage rights agreement over PAS for 22K/23K that stems back to the 2009 original agreement that created Pan Am Southern. I'm guessing NS haulage rights agreement over PAS continues (meaning NS gets the revenue, not PAS) but does the "reserved" trackage rights agreement still exist going forward?
Springfield Terminal, also a Class II rail carrier, operates PAS as PAS’s agent. (Revised
Appl. 6.) Springfield Terminal currently operates NSR trains pursuant to a haulage agreement
between PAS and NSR. (Revised Appl., Ex. 13, Operating Plan 13); Norfolk S. Ry.—Joint
Control & Operation/Pooling Agreement—Pan Am S. LLC (NS/Pan Am/PAS), FD 35147 et al.,
slip op. at 18. (STB served March 10, 2009). NSR also has reserved trackage rights on the
Patriot Corridor between Mechanicville and Ayer, Mass., and rights to interchange certain traffic
with other connecting regional lines. (Revised Appl., Ex. 22-E, V.S. Reishus 45); NS/Pan
Am/PAS, FD 35147 et al., slip op. at 11, 14.
  by newpylong
 
Yes they continue. The agreements are with Pan Am Southern (the railroad owner), B&E swaps out the ST only as operator end of the year.

What you mention are the "poison pill" rights which despite poor service at times were not executed because NS was never in a place to provide more crews than the ST was. Historically since buying the D&H south NS has delivered trains to PAS late just as much as ST does to them. Not sure if this has improved? You would know more than me!
  by BandA
 
In the next 20 years, there isn't going to be many passenger trains running west of Wachusett. So I don't think CSX and NS would be that adverse to a state buyout of PAS trackage.

How wide is the PAS row? I assume it's mostly single track but cleared for double track. How wide is the ownership/easement?
  by lordsigma12345
 
Safetee wrote: Sat Jun 04, 2022 4:46 pm and lest we forget, with massdot in the wings virtually frothing at the thought of acquiring the line from wherever the t leaves off at Wachusetts?? to at least North Adams if not state line, I can see a three way stair way to heaven.
Do they actually want to buy it? Most of MassDOT's attention seems to be on inland route and Albany - Boston service. There is a study on northern tier east-west passenger rail but I don't see anything moving on that unless/until they implement whatever it is they want to do on the B&A. Much more potential ridership on the southern route particularly if they connect it down to Connecticut. I can't see justifying more than one a day if any out to North Adams.
  by Safetee
 
From what I've been reading, despite a large amount of political support, Pittsfield to the HUB service is languishing and may very well not come to fruition any time soon.

The summer test service, a swan song project of Senator Hinds, NYC to Pittsfield via Rensselaer, I believe is not exactly going to be a stellar success.

And I dont believe there's a lot of folks who want to go to Boston from Albany and I feel it's safe to say that the feeling is mutual.. Of course if they do add a stop at Chester they'll be needing extra cars to handle the load.

I don't believe that a North Adams passenger service to and from Boston makes a lot of cents. From what I have heard, they/North Adams people would prefer to have service to Albany but i don't see that going anywhere any time soon. In the fall maybe some weekend service from the Hub to North Adams/Williamstown could fly, but i wouldn't bet on it.

On the other hand Greenfield to Boston and Cambridge service does have some potential especially with Vermont and southern New Hampshire traffic thrown in.

If Montreal could finally be tapped, a Boston connection to that service via Greenfield would have some real merit.

it will be interesting to see what develops. I do think there is great interest in Massachusetts to acquire the trackage from Wachusetts to state line. Assuming that happens over the next couple of years, I don't see tons of money immediately starting to pour in to rebuild the tunnel and all the track. But there is an advantage for both csx and ns to have another partner to help rebuild that line for modern freight traffic and the trading card would be to initially make some passenger service happen between Greenfield and Boston.
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