• Twin State Railroad

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

Moderators: MEC407, NHN503

  by b&m 1566
The deadline has come and gone and if I am correct Twin State Railroad's, operating agreement with the MEC/Pan Am's owned portion of the Mountain Subdivision in Vermont, expired at midnight January 1, 2019. So, what could we see happening now?
  by NHV 669
Given that Vermont Railways already moves its unit slurry train via Pan Am direct to mill, probably nothing other than Mellon dumping property ownership somewhere down the line. There isn't anything to move up here worth spending the necessary time and millions to make this line passable, even at a walking clip.
  by RAJDC85
Thank you for posting about this, as I was waiting to see if anything had been submitted. NHV669 (great username) brings up a valid point in the lack of business/routing that exists there- with lines pulled up south of Whitefield, routing is limited. However, based on assets owned by MEC/Pan AM (which I believe they own up to the state line, and the state of VT owns from there), it will be interesting to see what eventually does happen to the rail line as there is some purpose. Will it be used for more storage? Or, is there some way the state of NH/VT would reinvest some capital into the line? Time will tell.

I believe that the Vermont side of the track is in alot worse shape than the NH side (which isn't too pretty to begin with).
  by b&m 1566
I can't find anything about the estate filing for the 10-year extension, so I'm just assume nothing was filed at all really. It's been a few years since I read any kind of info on this issue, but I think the deadline for applying for that extension was August 31, 2018.
Now I know, talk is cheap but wasn't there some discussion about the state of Vermont being interested in purchasing the line to try and create bridge of traffic between St. Johnsbury, VT and Groveton, NH? Are those the slurry trains you mention NHV 669?
  by NHV 669
The only other traffic they might route there would be the seasonal salt loads to Barrett Trucking, but anything else is just adding too many extra carriers into the mix to begin with, just to cross between VT and ME.
  by Dick H
Vermont will likely be interested in at least the right of way. Even stingy NH
has bought numerous railroad rights of way. Once they are gone, they are
gone forever.
  by b&m 1566
I won't be the least bit surprised if Pan Am files to abandon the line at some point in time this year. It's of no use to them and until the agreement expire they couldn't do anything but let it sit there.
  by RAJDC85
Casey- could you clarify more on the salt loads for Barret Trucking? I am unfamiliar with that routing.

The slurry load movement wouldn't make any sense for VRS/Pan Am as it currently stands (and takes another line haul out of the equation).

Honestly, the best case scenario for the line would be seeing marketing create an uptick in any local traffic (marketing transload, etc.-- unsure exactly how...). However, that seems to be a multi faceted public/private partnership that would need to be created to bring traffic to the area. VRS has done wonders in the growth and promotion of the WACR Conn. River Line (which connects at St. Johnsbury).

Tangent: Interestingly enough, if there was a way to do it, the line could connect two G&W properties (St. L&A and NECR, thru VRS connection) if there was enough justification there to move traffic, etc.

With that being said, I would like to see an extension at least of CSRR Excursions to Whitefield.
  by NHV 669
Sounds like they're coming off of NS at Hoosick Jct., going over most of VRS to BF, then up the Conn River on the NECR back to the VRS at White River to Newport. From there I take it that they go all the way up to Canada and back down on CMQ to SLR, due to no longer having an easterly connection.

Sounds like it's far easier to just go PAS/PAR/SLR, but maybe the rate is somehow better through VRS.

Conway Scenic is done with moves to Whitefield proper for now, as their new Operations Manager is previously on record stating that he feels the time/resources of the RR are "better needed in other areas."
  by b&m 1566
You will never see the Conway Scenic include Whitefield into their regular operation. It's too much railroading for the average Joe/Jane who's not a railfan. The run would need to be non-stop and until you get to Hazen there's very little scenery west of Fabyan Station. To include Whitefield, you would almost have to have an overnight stay with the train returning the next day. I don't see an investment like that being worthwhile, to many things would need to be involved to make it worth peoples time and money. Some form of entertainment (a show, or shopping for example) would need to be in place in Whitefield to support something like that and Whitefield is really nothing more than a town that people pass through.
  by gokeefe
Was the required filing for extension a matter of public record?

I thought this was something that was a private matter between the estate and Pan Am.
  by b&m 1566
Wouldn't that need to be approved by the STB? I would image there would be something that they would need to sign off on, no?
  by Calebharris39
Still shows on Pan Am's updated 2019 trackage map that they still have intentions from whitefield to st'j
  by NHV 669
Intentions of what? Holding traffic rights until they inevitably sell them away at some point?
  by Calebharris39
Im guessing so. But one can hope! I walked most of the line in the brush last year.
Last edited by MEC407 on Sat Aug 31, 2019 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: unnecessary quoting
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