Thursday, December 22, 2016

CRSA/NYC+B&O/MC+LS&MS+B&O Bridge over Rouge River

Peter Dudley shared David Parker's photo
A southbound Conrail business train, led by ex - Erie Lackawanna E-8A No. 4022, crosses the 1921-vintage, former - New York Central River Rouge Bascule Bridge in Detroit, heading toward Toledo and Cleveland on April 27, 1983 (David Parker photograph)
Nolan Skipper LaFramboise II Peerless Cement in the background. Later known as St. Mary's Cement, I think
David saw a cab unit, I see a Strauss bascule bridge. And I'm glad Nolan noted that the silos are for cement. If it was just another locomotive photo, I would have passed it up. But I'm noticing the pattern that I can't pass up a movable railroad bridge photo.

Bing (below) has a much better 3D photo than Google does in this case. Both the bridge and the silos still exist.

Birds-Eye View
CRSA is Conrail Shared Assets Operation. I know there is a lot of CRSA track in the New York area. This is the first time I have seen it in the Midwest. It means that the route is so important that NS and CSX agreed to share it when they split up Conrail.

When Michigan Central and Lake Shore and Michigan Southern built these tracks, they were bitter competitors. In fact, that competition was the cause of the "crossing war" in Chicago. According to the SPV Map, after NYC bought them both, MC+B&O tracks were used for southbound traffic and the LS&MS+B&O tracks were used for northbound traffic.

Update:
Peter Dudley shared
"J-3a No. 5411 at the River Rouge (MI) drawbridge on May 13, 1952, heading the CLEVELAND MERCURY toward Toledo (OH).
Photo by the late Ernest L. Novak." (slightly-edited, with a glaring mistake in the caption left intact).
Actually, the train was headed NORTH (from Toledo, toward Detroit). The location of the 1921 bascule bridge's pivot point (on the NORTH shore of the Rouge River) tells the tale.
When someone asked if this was the former Wabash Bridge, Peter responded:
Peter commented on his posting
This bridge was built for Michigan Central Railroad (M.C.R.R.) in 1921. It replaced an older swing bridge on the same site. It's currently operated as part of Conrail Shared Assets // Detroit.
The former - Wabash bascule bridge (currently owned and operated by Norfolk Southern Railway) is located farther upstream, near the Fisher Freeway (I-75) Rouge River Bridge, west of Forman Park. That bridge replaced a swing bridge, which crossed the Rouge just downstream from the future freeway bridge site. A siding, running east toward Delray (paralleling the northbound I-75 lanes), still defines the original (1881) Wabash mainline right-of-way.




A 2017 Flickr photo that includes the G-Style (tight triangular color lights) Signal Heads and the bridge control tower.


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