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Passenger Trains > Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland


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Date: 06/13/19 09:32
Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: mbutte

From Federal Railroad Administration Press Release...Wednesday, June 12, 2019

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) today announced the recipients of more than $326 million in grant funds under the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Program and the Special Transportation Circumstances Program, for a wide variety of state and local railroad infrastructure projects. The grants will fund 45 projects in 29 states...

Florida — Amtrak Sanford Subdivision Infrastructure Renewal ProjectUp to $3,850,000
National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak)
Rehabilitates 52 miles of CSX Transportation’s A-Line between Palatka and DeLand train stations in Florida. CSX will transfer the renovated track’s ownership to Amtrak.

https://railroads.dot.gov/newsroom/federal-railroad-administration-announces-more-326-million-grants-support-railroad



Date: 06/13/19 09:45
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: cabsignaldrop

Great! Now they can give it the same "upgrades" given to the Michigan and St. Louis routes and make it slower and less reliable than it was before.

Posted from Android



Date: 06/13/19 09:47
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: CPR_4000

That's interesting. Does this mean that the S-Line via Baldwin (which was improved to route freights off the A-line in the Orlando area b/c of SunRail) is CSX's preferred freight route now? I thought originally they were going to use the S-Line during commuter hours and the A-Line when SunRail wasn't running.



Date: 06/13/19 10:20
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: Lackawanna484

If commuter passenger rail is ever extended to Jacksonville, this segment will be very useful.

Former Congress people John Mica and Corinne Brown put muscle into getting SunRail operational.

Posted from Android



Date: 06/13/19 10:44
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: Jishnu

CPR_4000 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> That's interesting. Does this mean that the S-Line
> via Baldwin (which was improved to route freights
> off the A-line in the Orlando area b/c of SunRail)
> is CSX's preferred freight route now? I thought
> originally they were going to use the S-Line
> during commuter hours and the A-Line when SunRail
> wasn't running.

The S-Line has been CSX's preferred freight route ever since CFRC (SunRail) took over the A Line between Deland and Poinciana.

I am actually a bit surprised that CSX is still holding onto the Jacksonville - Palatka section. Maybe it is just a question of getting funding for disposing that section tothe state or Amtrak or someone too.

There have also been rumors floating around about CSX wanting to pawn off the Auburndale to Mangonia Park section to some taker. SFRTA (TriRail) owns the line to Miami south of Mangonia Park with CSX holding trackage rights.



Date: 06/13/19 13:14
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: DJ-12

There is a very large Georgia Pacific mill on the north side of Palatka that is large traffic generator, which could be why CSX cut the transaction south of there.



Date: 06/13/19 14:05
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: Dewman45

GP is on the Northwest side of Palatka, there is all so a bridge building company and a culvert plant that both get cars when needed. But up the line 10 miles north of Palatka in Bostwick is the Seminole Power Plant that gets a train or two a week. They are building a ethanol plant at Seminole so in 2020 or 2021 they will be get coal and ethanol trains.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/19 14:06 by Dewman45.



Date: 06/13/19 14:14
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: Lackawanna484

Dewman45 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> GP is on the Northwest side of Palatka, there is
> all so a bridge building company and a culvert
> plant that both get cars when needed. But up the
> line 10 miles north of Palatka in Bostwick is the
> Seminole Power Plant that gets a train or two a
> week. They are building a ethanol plant at
> Seminole so in 2020 or 2021 they will be get coal
> and ethanol trains.

Yes.

The Seminole plant is also the destination for a branch of the new FGT natural gas pipeline. So, one or more units MIGHT be switching to gas at some point.



Date: 06/13/19 17:27
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: railcity

What the H*** is doing Amtrak this for?? Waste Money Again?? I don't understand why Amtrak wants this Section of Track??



Date: 06/13/19 17:36
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: amtrakbill

There is a draw bridge over the SR johns river that is a maintenance nightmare. Looks like Amtrak will be responsible over time

Posted from iPhone



Date: 06/13/19 18:28
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: CPR_4000

amtrakbill Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> There is a draw bridge over the SR johns river
> that is a maintenance nightmare.

Is this the one just north of Sanford? (Can be seen in daylight from the NB Auto Train.)



Date: 06/13/19 18:34
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: ProAmtrak

Hopefully this pays off, and if CSX is smart, keep trackage rights just in case!



Date: 06/13/19 18:49
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: PRR_4859

Too bad the former Southern line to Palatka is gone. May have been a way for NS to eventually extend its reach into Central Florida by connecting with the newly acquired Amtrak portion.



Date: 06/13/19 19:21
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: Dewman45

Funny you to say that NS is going to rebuild the line back to Palatka to service GP it's going to be a rail with trail.



Date: 06/13/19 19:30
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: abyler

railcity Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> What the H*** is doing Amtrak this for?? Waste
> Money Again?? I don't understand why Amtrak wants
> this Section of Track??

Amtrak runs 6 trains a day over this segment of line, could obviously run even more.  I hope they take up ownership fo the Chief route too through New Mexico and Colorado.



Date: 06/13/19 20:18
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: KV1guy

 It's a strategic move on Amtrak's part.  First off, CSX has bitched in the past about that section because as mentioned earlier it sees hardly any freight traffic....for now.  CSX has a keen interest to keep control of Palatka north.  Well in the meantime someone has to maintain the stretch to keep it 79mph to run Amtrak trains.  Next, doing so allows them to get the tracks to Deland.  By going to  Deland, it forces more cooperation with Sunrail if their trains are forced to run onto Amtrak territory...even for a short while later on.  Finally,  if the S line ever shuts down, say due to a derailment....CSX crews will be denied access over the stretch Amtrak runs owns because more than likely it will go to either NORAC or GCOR rules over that stretch, of which they wont be qualified on.  I dont think CSX is going to keep any crews and trains on it and q456/455 will originate/terminate at Palatka.  Even if they do like what Sunrail did and use a modified version of CSX rules, it still means they aren't qualified unless tested.  Next, if Virgin fails to secure Cocoa to Jax for some reason, like if FEC has a change of heart and says no, it effectively locks Virgin in mid and south Florida as Amtrak does not have to allow competition over its lines.  It can if it wants, but per its charter, does not have to.  Finally, if at somepoint Sunrail wants to expand even further north, again it means more cooperation or Amtrak can sell the line but may for instance still maintain dispatching and train movement rights.   



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/19 20:30 by KV1guy.



Date: 06/13/19 20:25
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: ts1457

KV1guy Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>  It's a strategic move on Amtrak's part....

Thanks for enumerating the possibilities. I did not know that Amtrak had been lobbying to acquire the line, so I am somewhat surprised.
 



Date: 06/13/19 20:31
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: KV1guy

I will say for the last part, that I'm not sure if that part was ever changed in Amtrak's original charter, but  I know it was there at one time.  Perhaps someone else knows...



Date: 06/13/19 23:44
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: TWC

Amtrak is making a meaningful, but quiet investment in long distance to avoid a repeat of the Raton Pass saga. This way Amtrak won't be cornered into paying the full cost of someone else's railroad. 



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/19 23:45 by TWC.



Date: 06/14/19 06:57
Re: Amtrak To Gain Ownership of CSX A-Line From Palatka to Deland
Author: joemvcnj

The SW Chief also had a situation in the 1980's or early 1990's in routing out of Chicago, and they had to reroute onto the Q to west of Galesburg.  
Be interesting to see how they handle the allocated fixed cost accounting onto the 2 Silver trains and Autotrain given the change in ownership. 



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