• South Jersey

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New Jersey

Moderator: David

  by Railcar1
 
Good question because that bridge had planned outages in the past when work was being done on it whereas this is an unplanned one that may take the rest of this week.
  by Railcar1
 
They did say it should only be a few days so they may wait it out.
  by pumpers
 
Memory is hazy but I think to connect north Jersey to south Jersey a piece of track which has been taken out just south of State St in Trenton along Route 1 has to be reconnected, maybe down around where the orange cone is in the picture.
https://maps.app.goo.gl/MDGeVPbrWBw7ygFw5
Jim S
What looks like a big rock on the ROW I think must be an abandoned mattress or something like that - don't know how a rock that big could have got there.
EDIT: here is a 2018 pic. You can see the missing rail
https://maps.app.goo.gl/8U4KaXycKL9NCtYbA

Also, there probably need to be 1-2 miles of heavy brush/tree removal and track reconstruction, going back up to Mulberry St.
  by Bracdude181
 
I've always wondered why they don't keep that open in case they need it. It's literally the only other way into South Jersey minus Woodmansie to Winslow on the Southern Secondary which is also currently not in use.

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  by JohnFromJersey
 
pumpers wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:48 pm Memory is hazy but I think to connect north Jersey to south Jersey a piece of track which has been taken out just south of State St in Trenton along Route 1 has to be reconnected, maybe down around where the orange cone is in the picture.
https://maps.app.goo.gl/MDGeVPbrWBw7ygFw5
I actually work not too far from these abandoned tracks. I see them every day I go into the office. Lots of homeless encampments on the ROW when it gets warmer out.

This track connects to the River LINE and the NEC. It would be the shortest and cheapest route to rehab for freight re-usage, but freight would only be able to operate at night due to the time separation that exists on the River LINE, and since it connects with the NEC, you gotta deal with the restrictions on there too.
Bracdude181 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:49 pm I've always wondered why they don't keep that open in case they need it. It's literally the only other way into South Jersey minus Woodmansie to Winslow on the Southern Secondary which is also currently not in use.
Due to the above reasons I stated, I believe that long-term, Winslow-Woodmansie would be the better North-South route, but that would be incredibly expensive and time consuming compared to fixing up this section of track between the River LINE and the NEC.
pumpers wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:48 pm What looks like a big rock on the ROW I think must be an abandoned mattress or something like that - don't know how a rock that big could have got there.
EDIT: here is a 2018 pic. You can see the missing rail
https://maps.app.goo.gl/8U4KaXycKL9NCtYbA
Nope, that's a big rock, not a mattress. You can see a world of difference in the 2018 and the 2023 picture - no big rock in the 2018 picture, and the crossing surface is still there and could be traversed by a train, vs. in 2023, you see the big rock + they covered the crossing surface with concrete so a train couldn't traverse it. I assume that the big rock was placed there and the crossings paved/poured concrete over was all done for legal/tax purposes. In 2018 it almost looked like a train went by not that long ago.
pumpers wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 5:48 pm Also, there probably need to be 1-2 miles of heavy brush/tree removal and track reconstruction, going back up to Mulberry St.
Not to mention fixing the crossings too. And it's Trenton, and all the roads the tracks cross over that would need crossing work are heavily trafficked, it would be a mess.

Downright idiotic that those crossings were allowed to be paved/poured concrete over, IMO, especially since there's always talks of making this section of track become part of a River LINE extension.
  by JoeBas
 
I mean, sooner or later the Delair is going to have a malfunction that can't be fixed for months (it IS over 125 years old and shows it) and then what?
  by Bracdude181
 
I'm not sure about that, but should something happen the only feasible solution would be to reopen this track in Trenton. Winslow to Woodmansie needs millions in repairs just to get trains to run on it, let alone handle anything like 38G or 39G. You'd have to fix what's north of Lakehurst too since almost everything past that is still in shambles and barely takes the strain of 2 GP9s and some lumber loads.

Getting this little track going would be the best workaround. Trains would only have to detour to Morrisville, go down the NEC for about two miles, then use this track to take the RiverLINE all the way to Pennsauken and go straight into Camden. Otherwise, they could drop the Camden freight in Morrisville and have Conrail come get it.

Only other options I can think of would be to somehow reopen the old Camden and Amboy through Hightstown all the way to Robbinsville, (good luck with that) or somehow rig up a car ferry operation. But much like the Southern Secondary option those could also be costly.

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  by JohnFromJersey
 
JoeBas wrote: Wed Apr 03, 2024 10:31 am I mean, sooner or later the Delair is going to have a malfunction that can't be fixed for months (it IS over 125 years old and shows it) and then what?
It's likely it's going to be sooner rather than later at that age
Bracdude181 wrote: Wed Apr 03, 2024 12:56 pm I'm not sure about that, but should something happen the only feasible solution would be to reopen this track in Trenton. Winslow to Woodmansie needs millions in repairs just to get trains to run on it, let alone handle anything like 38G or 39G. You'd have to fix what's north of Lakehurst too since almost everything past that is still in shambles and barely takes the strain of 2 GP9s and some lumber loads.

Getting this little track going would be the best workaround. Trains would only have to detour to Morrisville, go down the NEC for about two miles, then use this track to take the RiverLINE all the way to Pennsauken and go straight into Camden. Otherwise, they could drop the Camden freight in Morrisville and have Conrail come get it.

Only other options I can think of would be to somehow reopen the old Camden and Amboy through Hightstown all the way to Robbinsville, (good luck with that) or somehow rig up a car ferry operation. But much like the Southern Secondary option those could also be costly.
Realistically speaking, the best route is going to be fixing the two or so miles of OOS that goes through Trenton. That being said, you still have to deal with the issue of the River LINE having time separation in effect, and whatever other restrictions would come with that.

Rebuilding the old Camden & Amboy from Hightstown to Robbinsville would likely end up being more expensive than rebuilding Winslow to Woodmansie with how much real estate you'd need to buy back to get that ROW access again, and you'd still end up on the River LINE.

It is shocking that there is no direct North Jersey to South Jersey route without having to go into PA first
  by MikeTowpathTraveler
 
Great discussions to read and consider from everyone in regards to the severed Conrail/PC/PRR Bordentown Secondary at Trenton. When younger (late 60's/early 70's), I grew up in Roebling, right near the PC Bordentown Secondary. I can tell you that right around 11 pm every night save Saturday, a large through train with 2 diesels on the head end, came from the North (I will assume out of Morrisville PA), enroute to what I will assume would be Camden/Pavonia (with a possible stop at Burlington Yard?). Hopefully a PC railroader who ran this line could chime in with the details.......

And somewhere around 4 am or so, a large through freight from out of the south, headed north to what I will assume will be Morrisville Yard.

During the daytime, a local freight worked the Roebling Steel Mill as well, a bit to the north, the ship scrapyard at Fieldsboro, which filled gondolas filled with scrap steel that was moved by the PC crew to the Roebling mill. I believe this crew worked Florence and Griffin Pipe as well as Burlington Pipe. Up at Bordentown, another crew worked Bordentown and points north along that old Camden and Amboy, including Ocean Spray and the Agway feed mill. I want to believe that crew originated out of Morrisville, but again, I could be wrong. Those particular engines never passed Roebling, thus my assumptions, as a young railfan!

When the RiverLine Rancocas Creek bridge collapsed partially into the creek during the rehab of the ex-Conrail line into what we today call the RiverLine, that line connection at Trenton was very much open, as freight bound for Burlington, Florence and Bordentown was made into a daily freight that traveled to and from Morrisville. I will assume points south of the Rancocas were still served at Pavonia. I was lucky to film some through-freights past Roebling during this time. Little did I know that these would be the last through freights to ever cross the Delaware at Trenton on this old mainline once the Rancocas Bridge was opened for rail traffic!

During the RiverLine rail rehab project, the crossing of Crosswicks Creek at Bordentown was rebuilt, but using new wood pilings. It looks very much like the older bridge, save for a pedestrian walkway alongside it, to access the nearby D&R Canal trail.

I question if that bridge was built with a mind for supporting the heavy steel slab railcars that NS moves out of Paulsboro...... And I especially question just what the alternative for south jersey rail service is, should the Delair RR bridge go out of service for an undetermined amount of time, for there does not appear to be any alternative from the north, save for that decommissioned stretch of rail line in Trenton.........and that Crosswicks Creek crossing just to the south.
  by ExCon90
 
Wasn't the Delair bridge extensively rebuilt not too long ago? I seem to remember that major work was done (perhaps in the 1960's) and again when passenger service to AC was restored.
  by Railcar1
 
A few years ago- it had a few weekend outages. The day will eventually come that they are going to need a back up plan.
  by Bracdude181
 
Knowing Conrail it wouldn't surprise me if they wait for that bridge to fall apart before even considering opening the little track in Trenton. I really don't see how they wouldn't have that ready to go at a moments notice or at the very least keep it maintained to a point where any necessaryrepairscan be done quickly. Even if they came in once a year to cut the trees away at the absolute bare minimum that would help.

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  by pumpers
 
JohnFromJersey wrote: Wed Apr 03, 2024 9:01 am Nope, that's a big rock, not a mattress. You can see a world of difference in the 2018 and the 2023 picture - no big rock in the 2018 picture, and the crossing surface is still there and could be traversed by a train, vs. in 2023, you see the big rock + they covered the crossing surface with concrete so a train couldn't traverse it. I assume that the big rock was placed there and the crossings paved/poured concrete over was all done for legal/tax purposes.
I am not a lawyer, but I am pretty sure disconnecting that piece of rail as shown in the 2018 pic is good enough for legal purposes to declare a line OOS or whatever is necessary to reduce your taxes.
  by Railcar1
 
Pumpers- exactly. Plenty of old crossings are around on out of service and abandoned lines all over.
  by Bracdude181
 
Has service been restored yet?

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