Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Anything pertaining to railfanning in Michigan.

Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Sat Dec 18, 2010 12:05 am

Story reported tonight on WILX-TV 10 in Lansing:
Lansing - You'll hear the train rolling through Lansing's old town next year. City officials announced Friday that the historic railroad spur that runs through Lansing's Old Town will soon be put back to use. The rail line will be refurbished by the Adrian and Blissfield Rail Road Company and will be scheduled for limited use starting in 2011. Rail cars will be used to transport recycled materials from the Friedland Industries facility on Center Street.
According to railroad company officials, a three-car train will load recycled materials from Friedland Industries once every week or two, but never more than once a day, depending on final confirmation of train schedules. The train will move very slowly in the Old Town area, will not block traffic on Grand River,and noise concerns will be limited.

Source: City of Lansing


http://www.wilx.com/news/headlines/RR_Traffic_in_Old_Town_112096494.html
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Clay320 » Sat Dec 18, 2010 12:31 am

Nice to hear the JAIL/ADBF is bringing in more costumers.

Looks like a few people may be in for a surprise the first few times they come through. Tracks don't make for a good parking lot..
Image
User avatar
Clay320
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 373
Joined: Thu Apr 22, 2010 6:37 pm
Location: Deerfield MI

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby J T » Sat Dec 18, 2010 8:35 am

YES! Image

This is one set of tracks I've always wanted to see a train on, but they always eluded me.
User avatar
J T
Hates Supper
 
Posts: 10474
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 pm
Location: Grand Rapids

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:02 am

Last Trains operated on this trackage must have been coal hoppers going to the BWL power plant in downtown before it was retired several years ago.

You will notice in the Bing photo the old Michigan Avenue Tower was relocated beside the tracks here.. Right beside where the words 'Factory Street' are printed on the photo.

This remnant and another in southwest Lansing are all that is left of the line that came up from Eaton Rapids, through Diamondale, and into Lansing. In Diamondale the old bridge piers are still in the River.

Historic View looking south underneath Michigan Ave, by the Lansing Center,of the a portion of this route now removed. Parking lot is here today.

Image
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby fmilhaupt » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:22 am

Anyone remember what year MA tower was moved?
-Fritz Milhaupt
fmilhaupt
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 266
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 1:23 pm
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby J T » Sat Dec 18, 2010 4:25 pm

Larry G wrote:This remnant and another in southwest Lansing are all that is left of the line that came up from Eaton Rapids, through Diamondale, and into Lansing. In Diamondale the old bridge piers are still in the River.

Up until just a few years ago, I still saw rail heads in the pavement across Spring St. on the south side of the Grand River (just south of 496). I haven't checked recently...they may be paved over now.

I never got to see that line when it was still in, but I remember Michigan Ave. bridge looking like that before they redid it and built the Lansing Center.
User avatar
J T
Hates Supper
 
Posts: 10474
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 pm
Location: Grand Rapids

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby TrainWatcher » Sat Dec 18, 2010 7:56 pm

Bravo the the JAIL. Looks like they are gonna be making a new name for themselves in the shortline railroad business!
TrainWatcher
The Beast
 
Posts: 5933
Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 2:28 pm

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby intocable83 » Sat Dec 18, 2010 10:30 pm

This news brightened up my weekend a little. I always wanted to see that place ship out stuff and also can't wait to hear these people who live along this little spur start to complain their parking spot now has trains running through it like it should have! Would be even better if they could get Lansing Ice and Fuel at the end of this line to get service too. Last time I was through that park along that line the track looked like it was in decent shape up to the end besides being a little bit over grown. This just goes to show how good it is to keep these little inactive spurs and rail lines in place because when the right railroad comes along they can get business moving on these dead tracks again. :D
User avatar
intocable83
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 234
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:59 pm
Location: Perry/Morrice and Mexico City Mexico

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:57 pm

Old Town Grand River Avenue spur crossing views.
Image

Looking north on the old Lake Shore & Michigan Southern route through old Lansing. Building on left of track was the North Lansing Depot.
Notice the LS&MS marker by the corner of the building. Clean-up of ROW will be a must. :D

Image
Looking south on the same grade towards the MA tower relocated there several years ago.
LS&MS tracks run a couple of blocks south from here ending at Oakland Ave at Lansing Ice and Fuel.
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Ben Higdon » Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:14 am

I'm looking forward to seeing some pics of a train running past MA at its new locale! I hadn't heard the tower was saved...I'll have to pay it a visit. Would have been nice if they'd turned it 90 degrees before re-situating the tower, but I don't want to split hairs. :mrgreen:
An operator I knew at BO Tower had worked MA in the past, he didn't mention much more than the "colorful characters" around there in the wee hours.
User avatar
Ben Higdon
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 778
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 3:02 pm

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Tim » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:12 am

Contrary to what is considered common knowledge, the structure in Larry's photo wasn't the LS&MS North Lansing Depot. It was built by the city in 1914 as the city's first comfort station. On the first floor were men's rest rooms, woman's lounge and rest rooms, and the office of the city gas inspector. The second floor was a one room community hall. At one time the NYC/MC Local of the BRT held there meetings there. The rest rooms were closed in 1959 and the city vacated the building in 1968. The North Lansing Community Association leased the building from the city in 1980 and spent over $42,000 on restoring it in 1982 and 1983. It was a stop on the trolley and interurban but I don't know if it ever was for the Lake Shore.
Tim
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2007 12:47 pm
Location: Perry, Mi

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:26 pm

Tim wrote:Contrary to what is considered common knowledge, the structure in Larry's photo wasn't the LS&MS North Lansing Depot. It was built by the city in 1914 as the city's first comfort station. On the first floor were men's rest rooms, woman's lounge and rest rooms, and the office of the city gas inspector. The second floor was a one room community hall. At one time the NYC/MC Local of the BRT held there meetings there. The rest rooms were closed in 1959 and the city vacated the building in 1968. The North Lansing Community Association leased the building from the city in 1980 and spent over $42,000 on restoring it in 1982 and 1983. It was a stop on the trolley and interurban but I don't know if it ever was for the Lake Shore.



This was the post I refered too in my post above of the LS&MS depot in Old Town:

http://www.michiganrailroads.com/RRHX/Stations/CountyStations/InghamStations/NorthLansing.htm

Image
The schedule of the LS&MS trackage that this spur is left from.
Image""LS & MS Depot - this was somewhere along Cedar Street, downtown. I can't really remember the old railroad configuration of the area, but it was somewhere in this area and demolished long ago." from http://develop.metrolansing.com/forum/comments.php?DiscussionID=78 Many more neat historic photos of Lansing at this stie too.l
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby RRTTF » Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:46 pm

I am almost speechless. (Almost, but not totally!)

An incredibly beautiful depot structure. Unique in design. Befitting for a capitol city. Sad that the structure was not saved. In the left background also appears to be what may have been the freight house.

Does anybody know what years the depot was built and demolished?
RRTTF
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 249
Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 5:10 pm

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Sun Dec 19, 2010 8:18 pm

RRTTF wrote:Does anybody know what years the depot was built and demolished?


Found another photo giving information to its location. Photo of construction of concrete Michigan Avenue Bridge over the Grand River, 1893-1894. Looking northeast toward Lakeshore RR depot. Depot was NE of Michigan Avenue in the location of today's Lansing City Market area.

Image

Another photo showing the LS&MS yards in 1904 Lansing flood with depot and freight stations off in the distance.
Image
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby J T » Sun Dec 19, 2010 8:30 pm

RRTTF wrote:I am almost speechless. (Almost, but not totally!)

An incredibly beautiful depot structure. Unique in design. Befitting for a capitol city. Sad that the structure was not saved.
I agree, that is an awesome looking structure. Really too bad that it wasn't saved.
User avatar
J T
Hates Supper
 
Posts: 10474
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 pm
Location: Grand Rapids

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby GP30M4216 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:35 pm

Great to hear this little spur will become active again! This is the line which switches off the CSX at Turner Street at the east end of Ensel, right?

Actually, I believe the orientation of MA to the tracks is authentic:

Image

http://www.michiganrailroads.com/RRHX/Pictures/Photos/011-015/Photo013D.htm
GP30M4216
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 3457
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2004 10:35 pm
Location: Holland, MI

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:53 pm

[quote="GP30M4216"]Great to hear this little spur will become active again! This is the line which switches off the CSX at Turner Street at the east end of Ensel, right? [quote]

That is correct from what I remember. However, this spur was also connected to the C&O by a connector that came off the C&O just south of the Saginaw Street overpass and crossed both Cedar and Larch Streets to joing the old LS&MS river tracks that ran alongside the river into Old Town.

In this facing west picture of the C&O line just south of Saginaw Street the track veering to the left in the lower left corner is the connector. I also think the coal hoppers in the picture are waiting to be taken down to this line to go into the old BWL power plant in downtown Lansing. The trestle for this connection is still in the river by Lansing Community College today.

Image
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby J T » Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:18 pm

Larry G wrote:
GP30M4216 wrote:Great to hear this little spur will become active again! This is the line which switches off the CSX at Turner Street at the east end of Ensel, right?

That is correct from what I remember. However, this spur was also connected to the C&O by a connector that came off the C&O just south of the Saginaw Street overpass and crossed both Cedar and Larch Streets to joing the old LS&MS river tracks that ran alongside the river into Old Town.

In this facing west picture of the C&O line just south of Saginaw Street the track veering to the left in the lower left corner is the connector. I also think the coal hoppers in the picture are waiting to be taken down to this line to go into the old BWL power plant in downtown Lansing. The trestle for this connection is still in the river by Lansing Community College today.

Image

Wow, I never knew there was a connector that ran parallel to Saginaw St. (I always wondered where that spur went in that photograph). Was there a diamond just south of Saginaw St. and a switch off the LS&MS tracks to cross over the bridge as well, or did they connect the LS&MS to the BWL spur after they took the connector out? I remember the tracks running from North Lansing all the way to the BWL, but I never saw the connector off the C&O nor the LS&MS tracks continuing on south from Saginaw St.
User avatar
J T
Hates Supper
 
Posts: 10474
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 pm
Location: Grand Rapids

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby Larry G » Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:42 pm

Wow, I never knew there was a connector that ran parallel to Saginaw St. (I always wondered where that spur went in that photograph). Was there a diamond just south of Saginaw St. and a switch off the LS&MS tracks to cross over the bridge as well, or did they connect the LS&MS to the BWL spur after they took the connector out? I remember the tracks running from North Lansing all the way to the BWL, but I never saw the connector off the C&O nor the LS&MS tracks continuing on south from Saginaw St.



The connector is the picture did parallel Saginaw Street running approximately behind the current Quality Dairy Store that sits between Larch and Cedar and behind the appartment building highrise on the river. This area was industrial with scrap yards into the 1970's. There was also a car frame repair shop just down the hill, just out of sight, in the picture. McClintock Cadillac on Michigan Ave would send cars down there for alignments etc and I took them. From what I seem to recall there was either a curved connector or wye down on the riverside running tracks of the old LS&MS. I used the word "tracks" as I seem to recall two tracks running under the Shiawassee St humped bridge in those days. There was also another spur that came into the old Bunny Bread Bakery Building that was across Shiawassee St from the OLD Lansing City Market. Remember that spur well, during driver's ed, one of the students clipped an outside mirror on a boxcar when practicing backing up down in there. BTW the Drivers Ed teacher happened to be Denny Stolz who went on to be the football coach at MSU.
"If I Harp at you, it is only to Spur you on!
User avatar
Larry G
Railroadfan...fan
 
Posts: 576
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 4:58 pm
Location: Somewhere between the Wye!

Re: Lansing's Old Town railroad spur to be reactivated

Unread postby J T » Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:43 pm

Larry, is this the original configuration?

(please excuse my poor attempt at drawing lines.)

Image
User avatar
J T
Hates Supper
 
Posts: 10474
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:23 pm
Location: Grand Rapids

Next

Return to Michigan Talk

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google Adsense [Bot] and 4 guests

x