roberttosh wrote:I think there will be a lot more fibre moving over these lines, both heading east to NB to supply Irving's demands as well as south to PAR for their mills. Not sure how the new carrier will connect with themselves at Brownville (haulage or trackage rights), but I'm guessing that the majority of the business will head east from there to Keag, where it will either be handed off to PAR or continue east to Saint John. There's not much going to and from the county that needs to be routed over the MMA (old CP main) and I'm of the opinion that what little business there is (i.e. lumber, fertilizer, oils, etc) that is moving to or from the midwest or the east coast will find it's way over PAR, which unlike the MMA, connects directly with the NS and CSXT.
Overhead rights from Millinocket to Brownsville Jct. were among the conditions of the sale of the MMA lines to the state. I've got to hand it to the state, they toed the line on that issue to prevent the MMA from having captive interchange on both ends of the system when a new operator came in.
You bring up some interesting points on how this traffic will move. With the recent news that Katadhin's E. Millinocket plant has shut down, and if EMRY drags their own fiber out of the county and takes it elsewhere in their system or hands it off to PAR, what is left for the MMA? I can't see where they're going to have much else to move between BJct and Millinocket without the mill traffic after they drop EMRY's CP traffic at BJct to go to Saint John. I can't see them being very interested in paying upkeep on the line just for EMRY to overhead traffic to itself, either. Wonder how long it'll be until that line is unprofitable to them and we're headed right down the same road again?
Sorry to be doom and gloom on the MMA, but things just don't seem to be going their way, and pretty much haven't from the get go. But with both mills closed in the Millinockets, now it's starting to look doubtful if there will be much need for them to go past BJct, at least to the north.