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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:31 pm 

Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 2:54 am
Posts: 880
Location: Califoothills / Midwest Prairies / PNW
Stephen,
If it were that simple, to just re-open the line. The previous group used the idea of a downtown train, with the original equipment, as their mission. I know they had considered at least two nearby routes considered instead of the original line. Their honest effort, which did not succeed, tells us we need to abandon the idea of a downtown line.

A large plaza, used by the farmers market, and a museum have been built where the train ran. A major street crossing has been removed. Traffic volumes on all streets are probably 10 or 20 times the amount when the service began. The second street crossing that remains involves track through an intersection on a curve - which is not an ideal layout from a safety perspective. The southwest turntable was removed and the space is used for outdoor dining. Parks have popped up where there was just a stand of trees before. People are actually planting trees between the rails in one area, and some overgrowth is quite significant (and because if features "Madronas" it probably would cause outcry if it were removed).

Other routes had potential, but the area is still crowded with visitors every weekend. Like urban heritage trolley lines that were built to generate interest in a flagging commercial district, they are quite often victims of their own success. Had the line kept running all these years, it might still be faced with eviction due to congestion and competing interests. And insurance requirements which would be challenging to achieve. I think Tommy Thompson probably would have made it work, but it was a different time, a different place, and he died too early to see it through.

And to Rick Rowlands, thank you, I agree - a line that is owned, or has a high potential for ownership by a non-profit group, is the ideal and preferred way to go. Some easement-type land arrangements might yet be considered, but they would need to be very stable.

While this line might be categorized as a park train, it really was not that. It featured some industrial equipment, and track was built to heavy standards used by mines. While it was a free-lanced prototype of its own, it was very much a small railway built with close assimilation of designs used by historic equipment. It falls into a gray area, standing out in bright colors - neither black nor white.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:43 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 26, 2013 2:44 pm
Posts: 10
tomgears wrote:
I wish I could have met Tommy Thompson. Is there any available interviews with Tommy online?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wAKH5zAZR0


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:30 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 1:25 pm
Posts: 5622
crescent wrote:
tomgears wrote:
I wish I could have met Tommy Thompson. Is there any available interviews with Tommy online?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wAKH5zAZR0


One thing I noticed in this video, was the road crossings. At just about the 3:00 minute mark, a log truck and automobile crossed in front of the little 0-4-4RT and I would think that she would come out on the wrong end if a confrontation might happen. Better if any future operation would omit these kind of crossings I would think. I noticed in this video, and the one from 2015 that led off this thread, that there was what appeared to be an abandoned standard gauge line. Is there a place outside of Anacortes where such an old right-of-way might exist?

Les


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:25 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:19 am
Posts: 5686
Location: southeastern USA
You could conceivably dual gauge the Mt Rainier Scenic Railroad....... if the track owners would go for it. I think the extent of the operation on the 0-4-4T would be limited to inside the yard limits, however. Mineral Yard is pretty large and impressive.

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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:36 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 882
I can't think of any reason the City of Tacoma or Mount Rainier RR would want to get involved with this. They have an extensive 7.5" gauge road that may or may not be in use.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:28 am 

Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 8:04 pm
Posts: 123
Thanks for shedding some light on this mysterious railway. I remember finding those tracks in the late 90's and wondered what was going on with the railway. It sure looked like a fun ride. Back then that area was pretty run down and you didn't need to worry about traffic as there wasn't any. I went back around 2008 and still could not get any answers from the locals.

Along the same topic I remember from my many trips to Vancouver, a small railway that went around the perimeter of a mall parking lot. The scale seemed to indicate a CP Huntington type train although I never saw any photos of it. It had a artificial rock tunnel to house the train near the highway. Tracks were there a long time and never saw a train. Anyone know anything about this train? Here was the location if my memory serves me right.


https://www.google.com/maps/place/Birch ... 22.6662548


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:42 am 

Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2007 2:54 am
Posts: 880
Location: Califoothills / Midwest Prairies / PNW
I had heard about a Birch Bay WA 18" gauge railroad at a shopping mall. It was built by some Canadians, and they retrieved their train and abandoned the track when exchange rates and markets fluctuated, as they do in this region.

Some of the track lives on elsewhere.

Olin


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 10:22 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 882
I remember the tracks at that shopping center north of Bellingham. Here is a miniture train still running near there: https://www.miniatureworld.org/miniature-train


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:15 pm 

Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:26 pm
Posts: 403
Location: Pure Michigan
Breaking on Facebook:

Anacortes Railway wrote:
Dear Friends,

We, the Anacortes Railway Non-Profit group, have concluded that, due to many factors, we will no longer be pursuing, as a group, the operation or maintenance of the Tommy Thompson Train / Anacortes Railway.

It is our understanding that the Anacortes Museum will be taking control of the locomotive and cars and putting them on permanent static display.

We thank you for all your efforts and energy spent working with us to make the railway operational.
We have taken down our website, and the name of this page will be changing soon.

Sincerely,

The Anacortes Railway Board of Directors.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2019 12:52 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2601
o anderson wrote:
I had heard about a Birch Bay WA 18" gauge railroad at a shopping mall. It was built by some Canadians, and they retrieved their train and abandoned the track when exchange rates and markets fluctuated, as they do in this region.

Some of the track lives on elsewhere.

Olin


I was the project engineer on the track installation for that job. It was a nice project and they did everything properly, no cutting corners. Unfortunately, it was about the least compelling park train in existence. It was a giant oval at a strip mall, one side bordering the stores, then the other 3 sides circling the large parking lot. The far side of the oval had a scenic view of... Interstate 5 and a drainage ditch. You got pretty much an identical experience when you parked the car. Granted, it was intended for kids, and the pre-teens probably thought it was cool, but it was pretty sad. It also went at a snail's pace at least the time I rode, between dodging pedestrians entering the mall, stopping several times in a short distance at various stores, and then looping through the lot at a subdued pace.

I'd be interested to know where some of the track went. Glad to hear it lived on.


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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2019 1:49 am 
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Location: King County, Washington State
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 Post subject: Re: Anacortes Railway Test Run
PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:19 pm 

Joined: Mon Jun 24, 2013 1:14 pm
Posts: 156
Would anyone remember or know which issue of the Narrow Gauge Gazette had the article on the railway with scale drawings for the engine

Thanks

Chris


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