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 Post subject: Michigan Turntables/ Roundhouses still with us
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2004 3:42 pm 

Just occurred to me over the past few days of reading articles here and reading Dale Berry's pages again on Michigan Railroads.com that there are turntables and roundhouses left here many do not know about. Some that fit the bill:

TURNTABLES STILL IN EXISTING LOCATIONS

Ann Arbor --- Ferry Yard (Ann Arbor Railroad) 65'
Gladstone --- (CN/Soo) Unk.
Grand Rapids -- Hughart Yard [PRR] Unk. Electric
Pontiac Yard --- [GTW] 100'
Port Huron --- [GTW] 100'
Saginaw --- [PM] 100'
Sault Ste. Marie --- [DSS&A] Unk.
Wells --- [E&LS] Unk.

TURNTABLES MOVED FROM ELSEWHERE

Greenfield Village --- [PM] 70' (moved from Petosky)
Mayville --- [PM] 85'(moved from Port Huron)
Owosso --- [PM] 110' (moved from New Buffalo, now lengthened to 110' long)
Poland (Carsonville) --- [C&O] 90' (moved from Ottawa, West Virginia, in 1960, re-used as a bridge over the Black River to strengthen Sandusky Branch.)

TURNTABLES MOVED OUT OF STATE

Jackson Jct. --- [MC] 100' TT donated to museum in Indiana

TURNTABLES LOST RECENTLY (last 10 years)

Durand --- [GTW] 85'(cut up in early/ mid-1990's or so)

ROUNDHOUSES STILL WITH US

Adrain --- [LS&MS] 8 stalls, brick
Alpena Jct. --- [D&M] 5 stalls (of original 11), block
Bay City (Wenona) --- [MC] 30 stalls, no idea how many remain, brick
Calumet --- [C&H] 15 stalls, brick
Greenfield Village --- [DT&M] 6 stalls, brick, moved from Marshall, Michigan
Hancock --- [Q&TL] unknown, brick construction
Holland --- [PM] 2 stall remains, wood
New Buffalo --- [PM] unknown on remaining; 8 originally, brick
Plymouth --- [PM] 1 stall of original 7, brick
Port Huron --- [PH&D] 3 stalls, block
Tawas --- [D&M] 12 stalls, brick, comes down this year for a #$%& Walmart
Wells --- [E&LS] 6 stalls of original 8 poured concrete walls

ROUNDHOUSE LOST RECENTLY (10 years)

Kalamazoo --- [LS&MS] 3 stalls, brick came down 1996.
See Tawas --- Eminent destruction coming.

This is not meant to be absolute, and most of it comes via MichiganRailroads.com, PMHS website, or personal experience ("I seen it") How long these will last is another story, though. Only two turntables and one roundhouse are really preserved so far, with another turntable at least out of harms way (Mayville) all the rest I think could be considered "endangered", with maybe the exception of the Wells Roundhouse/ Turntable.

TJG



tjgaffney@phmuseum.org


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Michigan Turntables/ Roundhouses still with us *PIC*
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2004 4:10 pm 

Hello all,

Three things,

The roundhouse list leaves off Niles, Michigan which appears to be relatively intact in the photos below - and it still has its original turntable in place. Also missing from the list, probably because it is so obvious, is the former PM roundhouse at Saginaw which is leased from CSX by the Bluewater NRHS.

Also, In Re:

> Ann Arbor --- Ferry Yard (Ann Arbor)

This Armstrong turntable was primarily used to turn boxcars loaded with lumber for Fingerle Lumber in Ann Arbor, which was the third largest shipper on the AA back in the day. While the AA did assign a switcher to Ann Arbor until the late 1960's, I do not know of it being used for either steam or diesel locomotives.

Finally,

There is a similar (and a bit more extensive) list of roundhouses at the Michigan Internet Railroad History Museum site at: This is a great site that isn't mentioned much on this board or other places.

Best,
Tom



Michigan's Internet Railroad History Museum
[img]http://www.michiganrailroads.com/RRHX/imagesRRHX/Stations/MCRRNilesRoundhouse2003[ChelseaWhite].jpg[/img]
rrhistorian@hotmail.com


  
 
 Post subject: Tawas City Roundhouse to be Demolished soon :-(
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2004 4:22 pm 

Hello all,

Via michiganrailroads.com I also learned that the Detroit and Mackiac roundhouse at Tawas City will be demolished soon to make way for a new Wal-Mart (see link below) Reports of the property sale were first reported in the fall of last year, however these reports said that the roundhouse would not be demolished. I think this would be one of the most intact roundhouses in the state - I wonder if its machine tools are intact?

Tom

Tawas City roundhouse to be demolished
rrhistorian@hotmail.com


  
 
 Post subject: More on Niles *PIC*
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2004 5:09 pm 

Hello again,

Google provided some more information on the Niles Roundhouse. A group wanted to establish a "National Railroad Shrine" near the depot (current Amtrak station). Their website (which can be from a link from the page linked below) has the following statement about the Niles roundhouse and yard:

"With the outbreak of World War 1, the National Railway Administration made the decision to re-locate the West Division Terminal point eastward from Michigan City, Indiana to a more equidistant location in Niles. In doing so, they approved construction of what was said to be, the largest rail freight classification yards in the world, with more than 75 miles of trackage in the Yard Limits. The move included a new, 30 stall roundhouse, a large stores department, a terminal hotel and a large erecting shop, where later diesel yard engines were rebuilt. These structures all remain, now in commercial use. At one time, nearly 1400 men were employed in the Niles facility, in almost every trade and craft known in railroading, including blacksmiths."

Presently there is a natural gas fueled powerplant proposed for part of the former yard. It does not seem as though they will demolish any of the surviving buildings (roundhouse, concrete ice house, erecting shop) but they may demolish some parts of the hump. A website with plans can be found at:

There is another site (see link below) which has a few more photos of the remaining structures and yard - the facility seems more intact than I had initally thought!

Tom

Photos and description of Niles, MI site
Image
rrhistorian@hotmail.com


  
 
 Post subject: Re: Tawas City Roundhouse to be Demolished soon :-
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:38 am 

> Hello all,

> Via michiganrailroads.com I also learned
> that the Detroit and Mackiac roundhouse at
> Tawas City will be demolished soon to make
> way for a new Wal-Mart (see link below)
> Reports of the property sale were first
> reported in the fall of last year, however
> these reports said that the roundhouse would
> not be demolished. I think this would be one
> of the most intact roundhouses in the state
> - I wonder if its machine tools are intact?

> Tom

Tom-

First thank you for Saginaw. Bluewater was still there last I knew, and I did list the turntable --- slipped my head on listing the roundhouse.

As many who read MichiganRailroads.com know, the Walmart transaction has been ongoing for over a year and a half now. The current lack of interest of the Lake States and the Cities of East Tawas and Tawas (as well as Walmart) in preservation, pretty much meant this was going to happen. Last I knew, Tawas roundhouse was a museum, with most tools intact. A "museum train" of sorts moved much equipment stored in there over the last few years out about three or four months ago, which many fealt sealed its fate, which indeed it seems to have done.

This is the sad culmination of about 15 years of decline of an almost perfelectly preserved shop complex until the early 1990's, complete with vintage equipment. The first sign things were going bad is when the original D&M headquarters stations (just to the South of the Roundhouse) came down, followed by the torching of a couple of pieces of equipment, namely some wonderful outside braced boxcars of D&M and MC origin. Most of the cabeese stoired there have survived, most being ex-Pennsy cars.

"this is the way the world ends....."

TJG

tjgaffney@phmuseum.org


  
 
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