Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby SD80MAC » Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:59 am

DBFanatic wrote:It always strikes me as sad when structures like this are torn down versus being repurposed. I'm betting a local model railroad club would have been happy to put in some 'sweat equity' to have a clubhouse and possibly a home for their layout, ala the AAMRC in Dexter...

- Carsten

Pretty small building to have been a model railroad club.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby Doktor No » Tue Jun 18, 2019 3:37 pm

SD80MAC wrote:
DBFanatic wrote:It always strikes me as sad when structures like this are torn down versus being repurposed. I'm betting a local model railroad club would have been happy to put in some 'sweat equity' to have a clubhouse and possibly a home for their layout, ala the AAMRC in Dexter...

- Carsten

Pretty small building to have been a model railroad club.

Could have modeled a pretty neat inclined plane railway from one floor to the other...8-)
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby kd_1014 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:03 pm

MQT1223 wrote:As of 7 pm today the Pleasant St. Tower is a pile of rubble on the ground.


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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby kd_1014 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:05 pm

Does anyone know when the Pleasant Street tower was built?
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby MQT1223 » Wed Jun 19, 2019 1:48 am

kd_1014 wrote:Does anyone know when the Pleasant Street tower was built?


It was built after 131 was put in and Hugart Yard was reconfigured to its current position. At least judging by the style of the building anyway.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby justalurker66 » Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:18 am

1887
Pleasant Street (Grand Rapids) C&O Plymouth SD/C&O Grand Rapids SD/PRR GR&I Line/NYC Grand Rapids Br.
https://www.chicagorailfan.com/towmirc9.html

I assume the building recently removed was a replacement. :D

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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby Super Chief » Wed Jun 19, 2019 7:28 am

Since it was in the google view set back away from the tracks by the road in front of it the operator had a good view of the trains as they went by. That always struck me as peculiar going over on 131? I suppose back in the day there was more tracks and switch apperatus in front of it. Any body have photos or drawings of what the layout looked like?
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:27 am

justalurker66 wrote:1887
Pleasant Street (Grand Rapids) C&O Plymouth SD/C&O Grand Rapids SD/PRR GR&I Line/NYC Grand Rapids Br.
https://www.chicagorailfan.com/towmirc9.html

I assume the building recently removed was a replacement. :D

Street View June 2011 (when there was a street to view)
https://goo.gl/maps/vh4EoePVUKAQJdNQ8


I don't think the name "Pleasant Street" was used for the interlocking until after the 131 reconfiguration. Before that it was 2nd Ave IIRC

Thanks for the link to the interlocking dates, very interesting
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby SD80MAC » Wed Jun 19, 2019 9:25 am

Super Chief wrote:Since it was in the google view set back away from the tracks by the road in front of it the operator had a good view of the trains as they went by. That always struck me as peculiar going over on 131? I suppose back in the day there was more tracks and switch apperatus in front of it. Any body have photos or drawings of what the layout looked like?

Used to be a lot of diamonds and switches at Pleasant St, the actual "junction" was right about what is currently under 131. You had the double track Pere Marquette crossing the PRR and the NYC leads into downtown and Grand Rapids Union Station. PM passenger trains from the east would also diverge here to get to the station. PM passenger trains from the west went around the curve to the north at Sunnyside (long before there was a wye there) and crossed the Grand River twice, once on home rails, then swinging onto the PRR (roughly where the GVSU parking garage is today) and crossing that is now the "Blue Bridge" and onto the station. I read something once that said in the early 1940s there would be well over 100 movements a day through the interlocking when taking into account passenger trains, freight trains and switching movements.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby kd_1014 » Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:06 pm

SD80MAC wrote:
Super Chief wrote:Since it was in the google view set back away from the tracks by the road in front of it the operator had a good view of the trains as they went by. That always struck me as peculiar going over on 131? I suppose back in the day there was more tracks and switch apperatus in front of it. Any body have photos or drawings of what the layout looked like?

Used to be a lot of diamonds and switches at Pleasant St, the actual "junction" was right about what is currently under 131. You had the double track Pere Marquette crossing the PRR and the NYC leads into downtown and Grand Rapids Union Station. PM passenger trains from the east would also diverge here to get to the station. PM passenger trains from the west went around the curve to the north at Sunnyside (long before there was a wye there) and crossed the Grand River twice, once on home rails, then swinging onto the PRR (roughly where the GVSU parking garage is today) and crossing that is now the "Blue Bridge" and onto the station. I read something once that said in the early 1940s there would be well over 100 movements a day through the interlocking when taking into account passenger trains, freight trains and switching movements.


Crazy how things change like that. Now there are less than 10 movements through there
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby justalurker66 » Thu Jun 20, 2019 7:03 am

Looking back at old maps from 1894 and 1907 (long before US 131!) the railroads shows the GR&I cross Buchanan St and continue north along where US 131 was eventually built, then take a curve to the west to cross the "Blue Bridge". The NW connection from the Pere Marquette that created the current wye at the old Amtrak station was in place by 1907.
1894:
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Map/US/ ... /Michigan/
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Map/US/ ... /Michigan/
1907:
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Map/US/ ... /Michigan/

Pleasant St existed east of Division but was named 2nd St west of division. The numbered streets were renamed to match the named streets after 1907.
Note that the SW connection north of Pleasant St was not there in 1894 or 1907. All of the traffic passing north through Pleasant St (2nd St) would have gone downtown.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Thu Jun 20, 2019 8:22 am

SD80MAC wrote:
Super Chief wrote:PM passenger trains from the west went around the curve to the north at Sunnyside (long before there was a wye there) and crossed the Grand River twice, once on home rails, then swinging onto the PRR (roughly where the GVSU parking garage is today) and crossing that is now the "Blue Bridge" and onto the station.

Curious what this is based on? I always had the impression the PM passenger trains used the PRR Plaster Mill Track direct from Union Station to Sunnyside.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby Saturnalia » Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:14 am

Ben Higdon wrote:
SD80MAC wrote:
Super Chief wrote:PM passenger trains from the west went around the curve to the north at Sunnyside (long before there was a wye there) and crossed the Grand River twice, once on home rails, then swinging onto the PRR (roughly where the GVSU parking garage is today) and crossing that is now the "Blue Bridge" and onto the station.

Curious what this is based on? I always had the impression the PM passenger trains used the PRR Plaster Mill Track direct from Union Station to Sunnyside.

It is also my understanding that PM trains from the west did use their own connection in the NW quadrant of 2nd street, which can still be made out east of Oakland St by how the buildings were built around it. Trains from the east used the PRR/NYC alignment via connectors there. One must remember that the east leg of the Sunnyside Wye wasn’t added until fairly recently to consolidate everything out of Union Station and up the West Side. As I recall, only trains from the north used what is today the Blue bridge to Union Station from the PM side.

And don’t forget that today’s modern CSX mainline alignment from Oakland St to Pleasant St was actually the last part of the mainline built, as originally it was two separate railroads: the Chicago and West Michigan to the west and north, and the Detroit, Grand Rapids and Western to the east. Around the time they consolidated they built a connector through at 2nd street, which is today the mainline, and that’s part of why the curves in that area are so darn sharp.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby justalurker66 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:59 am

Please see the 1907 map:
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Map/US/ ... /Michigan/
The NW quadrant at Sunnyside was not there in 1894 ... the 1907 map shows the connection to downtown which is now gone.
In 1907 the PM turned south toward the GR&I along the current connection to Pleasant St but the line ended in a yard.
What is now the "east leg" of Sunnyside *was* there in 1894 and 1907.

Here is a nice layout showing the original paths (missing one connection on the 1894 maps):
https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewe ... 91094&z=15
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby kd_1014 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 11:51 am

Visited the tower site yesterday, and there's nothing but a foundation of the tower.
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Re: Update on CSX Pleasant Street Tower

Unread postby fmilhaupt » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:57 pm

So, does anyone recall which month and year the tower was closed?

The Conrail trackage through downtown was pulled in 1985, so I gather it would have been some time after that.
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