Saturday, September 27, 2014

Another Weekend Mixed Freight and False Gate Closings

While standing in line one Saturday waiting for a tour of the Tivoli, I took pictures of the trains that came through Downers Grove, IL. At 10:55:42 there was a westbound commuter being pulled by two engines -- 105 and 198. It is rather rare to have two engines pulling a commuter.

201400913 0046 10:55:42
Then at 11:14:54 there was a westbound freight. I had noticed that there were gaps in the fence so I had crossed the street to get better pictures. Unfortunately, when I got there I discovered the gaps where fenced off. Evidently the gaps are safety islands for the people working on the platform construction. The platform has been torn up since Spring. The train did not blow its horn when it approached the workers. So when we hear the horn, it must be because someone is not in the safety island and/or track work is being done.


According to the Diesel Shop, engines 4646 and 4623 are Dash 9-44CW locomotives.

At first I thought the train was a unit covered-hopper train. But then I saw a couple of box (refer?) cars. (I just noticed while looking at the pictures that the construction workers had left the safety island.)


The ratio of mixed freights to unit trains continues to be much higher on the weekends. Most of the cars were covered-hopper and tank cars. So I ended up taking pictures of all of the remaining cars that were not either covered-hopper or tank cars.

11:15:20 11:16:20 11:16:24

11:16:26 11:16:32 11:16:34

I didn't notice the newer safety features on any of the tank cars. But those that were carrying liquids such as corn oil don't need the features. And I have yet to figure out what a tank car is carrying.

At 11:36:12 there was another westbound commuter. There were also two false gate closings while I was waiting in line. That is, the crossing gates went down over Main Street even though there was no train in sight. Then after a few minutes they would go back up. I wasn't able to see the gates to get a picture to record time stamps. But I heard the crossing bells. False gate crossings have been happening at an alarming rate all Summer long. I hope it is because of the platform work and not because of the new signals that were installed this Summer so that there will be no more false closings after the platform work is done. I never saw a false closing when we had the old signalling equipment. I've seen an ambulance held up for a few minutes even though there were no trains coming through. And I don't spend a lot of time watching the crossing gates. It makes me wonder how many ambulances have been held up this Summer. Also the false closings add to our traffic problem on Main Street during the commuter rush. I consider the false closings a much more serious safety issue than me parking on their property. I wish BNSF was as diligent about fixing their crossing equipment as they are about kicking me off their property even though I was well out of the way of anything they were doing.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Land Scars = Strip Coal Mining

While researching the Gardner, Coal City, and Northern Railroad, I was reminded that coal used to be mined in northern Illinois. When I was studying the Morris Terminal RR, I noticed there were "land scars" northeast of the Morris. I now believe they were the result of strip mining coal.

Shaft mining of coal began in the Grundy/Will County in the 1860s and grew because the Chicago based railroads were a big market for coal. In fact, some of the railroads bought land and operated their own mines. The last shaft mine was closed in 1954, but many had already closed in the1920s. (Kernc) In 1928, Northern Illinois Coal Company began strip mining. The following are pictures of the Marion Type 5560 shovel that was assembled in 1935 on site after its parts arrived at a railroad spur. It was the largest built at the time with a 32 cu yard capacity bucket. In the left picture, look at the man standing to the right of the base of the boom in front of the control cabin to get some scale.


The following illustrates the end of a dragline and another shovel that was used in the Coal City/Braidwood/Essex area.

By 1954 Peabody Coal Company owned most of the mining operations. In 1974, they discontinued mining in the Will County area and moved all of their operations to southern Illinois because the coal seams in northern Illinois were not competitive with the thicker seams in southern Illinois, because of a long history of violent union conflicts, because of the continued growth of the oil and natural gas industries, and because of the introduction of environmental legislation. The northern coal fields were not abandoned because they were played out. From the Goose Lake Area page we learn:
A circular prepared in 1985 by the Illinois Department of Energy and Natural Resources defines deep mineable coal as 28 inches or more and having overburden depths of 150 feet or greater. Surface-mineable coal is 18 inches or more in thickness and having overburden not exceeding 150 feet. Grundy County still has 453 million tons of surface mineable coal, of which 51 million tons has high development potential. Deep mineable coal amounts to over 1000 times the surface mineable coal at 486,554 million tons. Grundy, Livingston, and LaSalle Counties have six billion tons of coal reserves. Peabody Coal Co. still owns approximately 1200 acres of land in Wauponsee Township with high development potential for surface mining. Goose Lake and Felix Townships still contain 18 million tons of surface mineable coal. When the thicker seams of Southern Illinois are mined out, attention may again turn to the resources that remain in the area. 
But I assume all Illinois coal has a high sulfur content, so I think the southern mines will also close before they are mined out. Currently Illinois coal is being shipped to China because Illinois burns coal from Wyoming. And that coal is being replaced by natural gas and wind power.

About two-thirds of Illinois is underlain by coal-bearing strata which belong to the Eastern Interior Basin of the Pennsylvania system. The deepest part of this basin is about 2,600 feet in Edwards County, Illinois. Grundy and Will counties are at the margin of the basin. That is why it is relatively close to the surface. In fact, the Illinois river cuts through some of the seams, which is why coal was first discovered in the 1600s in the United States near Ottawa, IL. That is almost a century before it was discovered in other places in this country such as Pennsylvania. (hinton-gen)

The following photos are from Goose Lake Area page with the captions on that page.

CCPLD: One of the last draglines in Goose Lake Township

CCPLD: Peabody's Krupp "Wheel"

CCPLD: One of eight crawler tracks of the "wheel"

CCPLD: Stripping shovel and coal loading shovel filling a truck

CCPLD: Marion dragline with 35 cubic yard bucket

CCPLD: Wilmington Coal Mining Company operation

CCPLD:Aerial view of the "Northern" tipple
And a lot more photos are available on the Coal City Public Library District's strip mining photo pages. For example, the one below illustrates the scars left by the mining operation. And page 2 has a picture of a car inside the 32 cubic yard bucket and near the bottom of that page is another view of the Krupp "wheel." Page 3 has pictures of the Marion 6360 mucker (overburden removal shovel) , which has a 185 cubic yard bucket. Near the bottom of page 6 are some pictures of a walking dragline.


Below is what the Coal City Area Club grounds looked like when it was mined out in 1955 and before it was converted to a recreational area.

I remember hearing that the hills and lakes in Four Lakes in Lisle, IL, were made by coal mining operations. But I have not been able to confirm that.

Now that I understand what I'm looking for, I believe that the areas with a bunch of squiggly lakes are former strip mines. This is reienforced by the satellite view because they are tree covered rather than farmland. And this is confirmed by the ILMINES after appropriate zooming and panning. The orange areas were strip mines.


Panning over to the Morris, IL, area confirms those land scars are also from strip mining coal.


Update: Pyramid State Park illustrates how large the coal mines were in Southern Illinois.

Gardner, Coal City & Northern Railroad.

John Weeks documented that the railroad that originally used an Illinois RR Bridge east of Morris was the Gardner, Coal City and Northern Railroad Co. It was purchased in 1891 by EJ&E just a few years after it was built. Its main purpose in the early 20th century was to serve the coal mines around Coal City and Gardner. It had several spurs to the various mines.

After some of the strip mines were played out in the 1950s, they were sold to a recreation club -- Coal City Area Club -- that did a lot of earth moving and tree planting to create a recreation area complete with a beach. The history of the club mentions that Com Ed leased the right-of-way for high lines. Given this clue, I used a satellite map to trace the route. It continued straight south along North Coal City Road, east of Carbon Hill and through the west part of Coal City. (In a 1940 aerial map, Coal City was still completely east of the railroad.) The power lines continue straight south past Central City. Then they head southeast so I think they leave the GCC&N right-of-way.

The satellite image to the right shows a land scar and tree line that indicates the route jogged east. (The southern-most power-line tower is in the upper-left corner of the image.) Switching to an 1940 aerial photo, the diagonal part continues until it is just north of South Coster Road, and then it turns south and goes along the east side of the road. And the next aerial photo confirms the route continues south. In fact, it intersects with a railroad that runs almost east-west. The east branch went to Gardner and the west branch went to another coal mine. The west branch is still visible as a fence line. The mainline route follows Coster Road to South Wilmington. The resolution of the aerial photos is not good enough to determine if the track is still present in 1940.

The railroad is intact north of the Illinois River, so it is easy to trace the track back to the Walker Junction where it connects with the EJ&E mainline northeast of Plainfield. An article on page 2 of the Fall 2011 Newsletter of the Carbon Hill School Museum concerning a strike by coal miners lists the mileposts of the railroad:

Mile 0  Walker Junction
Mile 1  Plainfield
Mile 5  Caton Farm
Mile 12  Minooka -- connects here with Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway
Mile 18  Divine
Mile 21  Dell Abbey
Mile 24  Carbon Hill
Mile 25  Coal City -- connects here with Santa Fe Railway
Mile 27  Centerville
Mile 30  Mazonia -- connects here with the Chicago and Alton Railway
Mile 31  Coster -- connects here with the Kankakee and Seneca Railway

Thursday, September 25, 2014

EJ&E (now CN) Illinois RR Bridge #552

I was waiting to write this post until after I tried to get a picture of the bridge from the Dresden Dam. But I'm going to post with what I have because I need to reference this bridge in other postings.

Update: you can't see the bridge from the dam. But, thanks once again to power line corridors, you can get a couple of glimpses of it from the road going to the dam.

North tower
South tower

20140710 0044
The Cemetery Road is tree lined but there is a gap where a power line corridor crosses the road and I found a safe place to park close to the gap. You can see from the EJ&E bridge over Cemetery Road that I'm pretty close to the railroad.

I went back to the car to get the telephoto lens. At least the power lines are less clutter than a bunch of trees. I'm not a morning person, but I need to go back and get a photo with morning light. Also, there was another clearing in the trees further East that I need to check out.

As you can see, the bridge is normally kept in the raised position. It looks like the conductor has to climb all the way to the top and center of the bridge to control it. 

As John Weeks documented, this bridge was a navigation hazard because the lift span was only 120-feet wide and tows are almost 110-feet wide. According to Bridge Hunters, the old bridge was replaced by a new bridge in 2011. If you look at the "old bridge" link, you will see some pictures by Steve Conro of the new bridge being built. Google and Flash Earth show the new bridge, but Bing is still old enough to show the old bridge.



And by using the magic of Bing Maps, I got a more interesting view of the old bridge.

I read in some comments that there is only one industry that still uses this branch. According to Google, it is Reichhold. They must get an awful lot of raw resin and make a lot of paint to justify the expense of a new bridge.  Actually, I read in a comment (that I now can't find) that the bridge supports just 1 or 2 trains a week. I'm generally not in favor of industries using trucks, but the satellite photos show they already use a lot of trucks. So this new bridge does seem to be a poor use of federal (Coast Guard and Homeland Security) money.

CN Stations and Terminals after zooming
I found a "Stations and Terminals" map from CN's map site. After switching from Firefox to Internet Explorer, I was able to zoom in to the branch that crosses the river. Reichhold are the tracks to the West and just South of the river. Clicking each of the red triangles starting from the Northwest we have East Morris, Beven, Divine, and Goose Lake. The branch to the east just south of the river is the Dresden Nuclear Plant, but I'm sure it does not get regular rail traffic. The lakes Southeast of the Goose Lake branch are from an old mining operation.  I came across a reference to Clay Pit so I assume they were mining clay. There were coal mines further south by Coal City, but a 1940 aerial view of this area looks like the material was removed rather than strip mined. In the image below, the railroad is on the left side and a branch goes to the East. Note that about only half of the land was mined by 1940.
ILHAP aerial photo
I assume the reason why the Goose Lake branch line is still maintained is to have a Y that allows the trains to Reichhold to be turned.

Update: an Illinois State Geological Survey map verifies that the mining operation served by the EJ&E Goose Lake branch was not coal mining. I'm still speculating that it was clay because I know there were brick and tile industries and pottery industries along the Illinois River that wanted clay. In fact, while I was researching strip coal mining, I read about a brick and tile company that mined a coal seam so that they could get to the clay seam that was under it.

I found this comment on a K&S posting. I need to research if the GCC&N route is what went over this bridge.

Bill Molony: The EJ&E chartered the Gardner, Coal City & Northern to build from Walker south through Minooka, Devine, Dell Abbey, Carbon Hill, Coal City, Centerville and Mazonia to Coster in the 1880's in order to reach the coal fields in that area. That line was extended from Coster to South Wilmington in the 1890's. The southernmost 12 miles of the former GCC&N was abandoned in the 1930's.

Tom Hunter posted eleven photos of the old (skinny) bridge including a tow passing through.
I added Google and Bing links to the new and old bridges.
Al Pawloski Nice pics, Tom . Back around 1967 I remember learning to operate Divine bridge from Harold Watkins (who at one time, when that job worked daily, actually stayed in a little trailer just south of the river, on the east side of tracks). He was telling me how he once had to crawl across the bridge due to the strong winds. I dismissed that as an old man trying to scare me. It was only a few months later when I was leaving the bridge to get back to my car, and indeed I had to crawl on my hands and knees, with my duffle bag in my teeth, because the gusts were so strong. I later found out that wind gusts of 75 mph were recorded that night. Back then the bridge had wooden planks instead of the metal grating in your pictures (lucky for my knees). Also no telephone in the shack, just the old railroad line to the dispatcher. Had car trouble once and there was a nice old couple in a farm house, down by the road, that let me use their phone, to call a friend. Man, I'm old!
Michael Steffen The old Bridge 552 at Divine was the most struck Railroad bridge in the country. Tows would have to stop before reaching the draft and turn to line up for the passage. With three barges across, there was about a foot of clearance with each wooden fender. The bridge was a hazard to navigation and was on the governments list for replacement for years. The money was finally accrued and the replacement occurred, after CN took control. I was the bridge tender/operator one day during the early 80's when the south fender was heavily damaged. Frank Gabry (the Claim Agent) showed up to take pictures for the claim. He mentioned then that a replacement project was in planning stages.
Frank DeVries I somehow became in charge of the bridge job for signals on CN. They were well on their way to replacing the lift span when I left to go to "America's Railroad". CN management did not want the signal equipment. I was told in no uncertain terms were they going to upgrade signals. Could not get a word in edgewise that it would allow remote control of the bridge. Sigh.....
Michael Steffen Frank DeVries Doesn't make sense to replace that bridge and not allow it to be remote controlled, especially since the technology is so advanced.
Frank DeVries Its the CN. It doesn't have to make sense...

 An album of many photos of the building of the new bridge "around" the old bridge.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Chicago Railroad Bottleneck and CREATE

Update: a Nov. 17, 2014, video about the need to continue funding CREATE.

Back when farmers had to ship their crops and pickup their supplies with horse and wagon, it made sense to have a lot of railroad lines crossing our country. But with the advent of trucks and paved roads, a lot of those lines did not make economic sense. Unfortunately, the federal regulatory agency did not allow the railroads to abandon the lines that were made obsolete by the invention and development of the internal combustion machine (both cars and trucks) until the 1980s. When they were finally able to abandon lines, the companies tore up a lot of the lines to reduce their property tax liability, including New York Central tracks that would have allowed transcontinental trains to completely bypass Chicago area.

In the 1980s, railroading was considered a dying industry because of the interstates so tearing up tracks and abandoning right-of-ways was considered prudent. But with the invention of intermodal traffic and unit trains, freight traffic has recovered and now the railroads don't have enough track to handle the load. According to a Feb 14, 2012 issue of ChicagoMag:
Railroads have gone from having too much track to having not enough. Today, the nation’s rail network is just 94,942 miles, less than half of what it was in 1970, yet it is hauling 137 percent more freight, making for extreme congestion and longer shipping times.
In fact, BNSF is closing intermodal yards to force the traffic off their rails and make their intermodal service statistics look better. Today, a quarter of all rail traffic in the nation touches Chicago. Nearly half of the intermodal rail traffic goes by or through the city. The city sees 1,300 trains each day, 800 passenger and 500 freight. A May 27, 2012, NYTimes article explains the results of the Chicago bottleneck:
Shippers complain that a load of freight can make its way from Los Angeles to Chicago in 48 hours, then take 30 hours to travel across the city. A recent trainload of sulfur took some 27 hours to pass through Chicago — an average speed of 1.13 miles per hour, or about a quarter the pace of many electric wheelchairs.
A rail-flow map further illustrates Chicago's central role in freight traffic. This is why Chicago became the center for the futures trade industry.

US Government
There is a lot of room for improvement. According to the NYTimes article some of the switches still [May 7, 2012] have to be operated manually after the train passes. Since the railroads trashed their cabooses in the 1980s, that means a crew member has to walk the length of the train -- a mile or more -- to throw the switch and then walk back.

To reduce congestion in Chicago, in 2003 a program called CREATE (an acronym for Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency Program) was formed to coordinate solutions with the cooperation of the railroads, AAR, and all levels of government. The program defines 70 projects to eliminate grade crossings, add flyovers at railroad intersections, add more tracks, etc. As an example of one of the projects, the ASCE describes the B2 project. And I investigated GS15a and GS14. A project that is near and dear to my heart is GS7 because I live in Downers Grove.

CREATE is not just construction projects. It also instigated programs to improve the cooperation and coordination among the railroads. Before this program, they did not share information. Now they work with the Chicago Transportation Coordination Office (CTCO) to input information to a centralized database of needed freight car transfers that is shared by all of the railroads. I remember when air traffic control implemented what they called "full flight control." Before that control, flights would take off and then when they got close to their destination they would have to circle until a slot opened up to allow them to land. I remember circling for a while over Iowa one time waiting to get a landing slot at O'Hare. With full flight control, a plane is not allowed to take off until it is assigned a landing slot. I have spent more time sitting on a plane in Newark than I care to remember, but that beats setting in a plane over Iowa that periodically did sharp banks. (They really don't circle, it is more like square.) Now freight trains will be held on sidings out in the country until there is planned capacity to get it through Chicago, including the receiving railroad.

The Canadian National railroad was not satisfied with the progress of the CREATE program so in 2008 they proposed to buy the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway Company (EJ&E) from USS Steel for $300 million, which has been purchased. When they are done upgrading the EJ&E, they will move their freight to the former EJ&E tracks and from the former Illinois Central tracks that run into the city. It is those former IC tracks that Amtrak was complaining about in the ChicagoMag article:
More than 4,000 instances of freight train interference on Amtrak’s City of New Orleans route and on Amtrak service between Chicago and Carbondale were counted on the CN-owned rail lines last year, Amtrak said in the complaint. The delays totaled the equivalent of more than 26 days, Amtrak said.
If CN quits using that track and abandons it, then CN will have solved the congestion problem. But then Amtrak would then need to buy the track to keep their southern routes intact. Since Amtrak was not willing to pay $100,000 for a former Santa Fe bridge that BNSF abandoned to keep the Southwest Chief service going on their mainline through Streator, IL, to Galesburg, it will be interesting to see what they do about the former IC route.

A couple of questions during an April 17, 2013, interview with the program director of CREATE, William C. Thompson, provides a nice update of the program.
Q: It has been 10 years since CREATE's launch. Can you quantify the progress that's been made in reducing the amount of time to traverse Chicagoland?
A: The railroads have seen about a 30-percent reduction in cross-town transit times. In 2003, it was taking trains just under 43 hours to move through the Chicago terminal. In 2012, trains were moving through the terminal in 32 hours. The Chicago terminal is ringed by automatic equipment identification (AEI) readers that enable us to accurately measure performance. Each railcar in North America has an AEI tag on it. By using data from the AEI readers, the railroads are able to receive the real dates and times a car entered and departed the terminal.
Q: What are the major challenges still facing railroads in unclogging the region?
A: The major challenge is to obtain the needed funding to finish the remaining projects in the face of continued traffic growth. It is important to remember that CREATE is not just about freight. It is also about improving intercity and commuter passenger rail service, and reducing road congestion. The railroads have agreed that passenger trains will have top priority for movements. This is known as the "Chicago Protocol." The protocol results in a shutdown of much of the Chicago-area mainline freight operations Monday through Friday between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. and between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. This amounts to a 25-percent reduction in track capacity during that time. The challenge is to continue to build facilities that will permit the freight and passenger operations to be separated during those critical rush hours.

There are still many grade separation projects and passenger projects that must be cleared environmentally, designed, and constructed. The challenge facing the CREATE partners is to gather sufficient funding to complete the program. So far, we have received about $1.2 billion in funding for a $3.2 billion-plus program. Currently, 16 CREATE projects are complete, 12 are under construction, and 19 are in the design phase. Twenty-one of the 70 projects have not started design.
The remainder of this posting is information from a presentation prepared for the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) that I found particularly interesting and that I want to easily reference.

Chicago Rail Infrastructure
• 16,000 acres, twice the area of O’Hare
• 78 yards, including 21 intermodal (rail-truck)
• 2,800 route-miles of track
• 12 commuter rail routes
• 1,100 viaducts and bridges
Daily Activity:
• 1,200 trains (500 freight, 700 passenger)
• 37,500 rail cars processed
• 20,000 truck moves through intermodal gates

• World’s 3rd busiest intermodal hub.
• One third of all freight rail traffic converges on Chicago daily.

AAPA Slideshow

AAPA Slideshow

AAPA Slideshow

AAPA Slideshow

AAPA Slideshow

AAPA Slideshow

I remember Amtrak wanted a control room that would be staffed with representatives from each of the railroads to improve communication and cooperation. They were even willing to donate space for the room in the Union Station. I wonder if it happened and CIROC is the result.

CREATE GS15a Update and South Shore Freight

Update: The project was completed July, 2015.

(Bridge Hunter, see below for various satellite views)
I was headed back from Indiana on a Sunday, so instead of taking my usual route of I-80 to I-294, I went North on I-94 to the 130th street exit. (I try to limit my visits to the big city to Sunday's because of parking, traffic, etc.) I wanted to check out the progress of the CREATE GS15a grade separation project that required moving a big truss bridge a couple of years ago. I had noticed that they had closed Torrence Avenue over 2 years ago but had not started any digging for the underpasses. If you look at a map, you will see that this closes one of the few north/south roads in the area. But they seem to be in no hurry, they are not paying for Sunday overtime. After two years of construction, they appear to have 3 of the 4 legs of the intersection dug, but they haven't started on the fourth leg yet. Construction of the new Norfolk Southern (former Nickel Plate Railroad) bridge looks completed.

20140921 0097rc
The big truss bridge carries the Chicago, South Shore & South Bend Railroad whose nickname is South Shore Freight. It is the last remaining active interurban railroad. Its interurban heritage is very evident in Michigan City where it still runs down a street. After their most recent bankruptcy in the 1980s, the freight and passenger operations were separated so that the freight operations would be a viable company by removing the losses from the passenger operations. Freight is operated by South Shore Freight and the commuter service is provided by the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District. The track is owned and maintained by the NICTD. The freight operation pays for track use rights. This explains the South Shore Freight name that I saw on the locomotives as I drove along the construction on 130th before I got to the intersection:

Zooming in on the engines, we see they are 2005 and 2007. According to The Diesel Shop, these are GP38-2s built in January, 1981. I also found a list that includes the electric locomotives used on the line.

The railroad used to use electric locomotives for freight service until 1983. One of their Little Joes has been preserved at the IRM. It is so big that they can't house it in their display barns so they repainted it for preservation with paint, equipment, and expertise provided by Sherwin-Williams.

SSF, scroll to the bottom of the page
Back to the GS15a construction. One of the reasons justifying the expense of the project was to retain the 4000 jobs at the Ford assembly plant in the northwest quadrant of the intersection (satellite). (It appears the assembly plant does not get any auto parts via the railroad. All of the industrial spurs go to the American Sweetner Corp.) A freight train blocking the road for 20 minutes not only interferes with employees getting to their parking lot, it backs up cars coming off the assembly line from getting to Ford's Shipping Yard (satellite). Looking at a satellite image, the shipping yard is clearly south of the intersection. In fact, when I zoom in on the first picture above, you can see vehicle-carrier cars parked in the yard to be loaded.

So how has Ford been getting their new cars from the assembly plant to the shipping yard while construction is in progress? The posted detour takes you down Brainard Ave. to Burnham Ave. and then back along State Street and Torrance Ave. That is a long ways. I'm surprised they are not working on the intersection on Sundays. To add to the pain of the detour, we were stopped by a northbound coal unit train crossing Brainard (satellite). And I was reminded that the freights in this area move sloooowly. I'm beginning to appreciate that the freights through Downers Grove move pretty fast. The depot on the right of the picture had a "Hegewisch" sign on the end.

I have not been able to figure out who owns that track. (Update: it was the PRR's South Chicago & Southern (Bernice Cutoff), and it is now operated by IHB and/or NS.)

Update: The brown bridge that has been added is a pedestrian crossing.

20160521 3321
Thanks to the red light, I had plenty of time to take pictures.

Steven J. Brown posted
Norfolk & Western Class A 1218 runs on a round trip between Chicago and Fort Wayne - June 18, 1988.
Waldolf Ursine It looks like it was taken from the South Shore embankment looking north towards 130th st and the Ford Torrance assembly Plant.
Steven J. Brown You are correct.
One of five photos posted by Mark Hinsdale
Harvey Kahler I'm guessing this is over 130th looking se to the new NICTD-CSS oh bridge. Train pulling autos out of the Ford yard. The assembly plant is behind you.
Mark Hinsdale Correct.