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Western Railroad Discussion > Proposal for Wallula, WA

Date: 09/10/19 10:40
Proposal for Wallula, WA
Author: funnelfan

Here is a proposal I've been thinking about. For many years Watco ran a rather successful train between the PCC lines northeast of Hooper, WA and the Port Kelley barge loader at Wallula. But the cost and complexity of PTC has killed that operation (replaced with a shuttle train loader at Endicott, WA). The Port Kelley barge facility is isolated by the UP Ayer sub and the cost and operational complexities of trying to reach it from Frontier Rail's CWW (Columbia & Walla Walla RR) are prohibitive. But the CWW is tributary to a large area of wheat lands both north and south of Walla Walla, and several online elevators remain. I would propose that two new tracks be built off the CWW just before it enters the cut going under Hwy 12 and extend southwest down to the point of land above the Walla Walla River. The tracks would tie back together with a 5 car long tail track. Just past the switch would be a unloading shed that can unload 1 car at a time. A overland conveyor would take the grain from the unloader to the Port Kelley elevator and barge loader. In operation blocks of 4 cars would be pulled from one track and unloaded and then pulled back into the opposite track. This is a very common kind of operation at elevators around Eastern Washington. The addition of the run-around track here also gives CWW much more operational flexibility in this area.The state would be a primary beneficiary in that it would remove hundreds of heavy grain trucks from the highways around Walla Walla that are becoming increasingly congested. It would also benefit farmers with a more efficient and lower cost alternative to trucking. And it would make the CWW railroad much more viable with a steady base of traffic.

Ted Curphey
Cheney, WA

Date: 09/10/19 13:07
Re: Proposal for Wallula, WA
Author: bbethmann

I think you have something there Ted. Seems one would get a significant benefit from such a service renovation.

BB in Spokane

Posted from iPhone

Date: 09/11/19 08:33
Re: Proposal for Wallula, WA
Author: cjvrr

Attaching the conveyor to the existing railroad bridges may lower costs significantly as you would not need to construct an entirely new structure and may avoid some environmental restrictions.

Date: 09/11/19 10:27
Re: Proposal for Wallula, WA
Author: EsPee1229

Ted; Have you submitted this to CWW yet?  Seems pretty logical.  Gotta make an investment to get a return.

Keith in Roseburg
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