Thursday, June 20, 2019

CREATE: WA11 - Improving Dolton Junction

The Feds are paying $19m to improve Dolton Junction. [CBS (source)]

Unfortunately, the number $19m was about the only useful info in that CBS news report. Fortunately, ProgressiveRailroading identified the project as CREATE WA11. Unfortunately, CREATE's home page doesn't have WA11. Fortunately, they do have a WA11 fact sheet.

WA11 Fact Sheet (satellite)

125 freight trains (UP, CSX, IHB, NS, CN) 2 Amtrak (Cardinal Service)
Scope of Work
Upgrade and reconfigure the CSX/IHB/UP connections at Dolton Interlocking including the replacement of an NS connection between the IHB and CSX. Construct a third main line with direct access from CSX and Barr Yard to the UP mainline. Construct crossovers between two mainline IHB tracks. Upgrade connection between IHB and UP. Automate Dolton Tower for remote control.
The project will increase freight train speeds for multiple routes from 15 mph to 30 mph, including routes accessing CSX Barr Yard, UP Yard Center, UP Dolton Intermodal Yard, a CSX mainline route, and all mainline connections between IHB, CSX, and UP. The increased speeds will enable this location to handle increased freight train throughput. Due to increased freight train speeds the potential for delay to Amtrak trains will be reduced.
Several months ago I read a comment that one of the reasons they tore down the interlocking tower before any preservationists could do anything with the contents was that the location was needed to make room for a connecting track.

A "before" image:

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