[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

PC: What if?

Three things:

First of all, I made a minor update to the freight cars Photo Gallery
on the PC web site. Some guy named Feldmeier send me a bunch of 
freight car pics, and I was able to finally post some. :-) More might 
go up tonight or tomorrow. Tonight's update is gons and cabooses,
located at http://prozac.cwru.edu/jer/pc/pics/equip/pics.html
I've checked the page, but please let me know if you have 
any problems.

Secondly, the server which hosts the PC pages has been equipped with
automatic SPAM defenses. It's like a Patriot missile for SPAM. :-)
Anyway, if your ISP appears in the list at 
http://spam.abuse.net/spam/rogues.html , you might have some problems
with email to and from the list. I checked the subscriber list, and
nobody should be affected right now, but this list is subject to
change. This has been put in place by the administrators of the server
to protect the users of the server and the server's mailing lists from
spam or junk email, which I am completely against. 

Anyway. enough of the admin stuff. Thirdly, I thought I would 
throw this out for discussion....

I'm assuming that most people are aware of the circumstances that
formed Conrail, namely the bankrupcy of our favorite worm railroad
and the others in the northeast. One problem that came about when
Conrail was formed was the lack of competition in the northeast,
as the competition that the Delaware & Hudson was supposed to provide
never quite panned out. Consequently, it was this lack of competition
in the northeast that resulted in the carve-up of Conrail after NS
and the government showed that a merger of CSX and CR would make
competition in the east worse. This is why CR is being cut up like a
pie today.

Let's go back 30 or so years, and assume a couple of mergers that
didn't take place, did. For example, the Nickel Plate and the
Lackawanna were rumored to be discussing merger, but nothing came of
it, and the EL was born. Assume that the Norfolk & Western (NKP's 
successor) merged with another Buffalo-NYC line, the Lehigh Valley.
This would have given another competitor in the Chicago-New York 
market, and the NY/NJ area as a whole. (While the EL was a competitor
too, it fared no better than PC, RDG, etc.) This would have meant 
that PC, EL, Reading, CNJ, PRSL, and L&HR would have all gone into 
Conrail, and the new CR would have had to compete with the 
"Norfolk Valley." Today, that would be NS.

Or assume that the proposed merger of the Reading and/or Jersey Central
with the B&O (Chessie) went through, and today, we would have CSX 
coming into New York City and New Jersey from the south. All the other
fallen flags then went into Conrail.

Or, as a third scenario, go out on a limb and say that the Erie 
Lackawanna survived, and long enough to make it into the double
stack era, where it could make some money with it's spacious
clearances. Might it have provided enough competition with a
Conrail formed from everybody else?

These are just my ideas. Feel free to use any or all of these scenarios,
or come up with your own. The point I'm getting at is: how would the
rail situation in the northeast US look today if any or all of these
things happened, and what would we be seeing going on between CR,
NS, and CSX today?

I was discussing this same topic with some friends a couple weeks ago, 
and it made for an interesting conversation. I'm just curious on what 
you all think on this. And if either this is over your head, or I'm 
way into this, that's OK too. :-)


Jerry W. Jordak               The boxcars and flatbeds, whistle blowin' steam
mailto:jer@smellycat.com      That was yesterday
http://prozac.cwru.edu/jer/   Now those big trains don't come anymore
Acts 16:31   <><                  -- Restless Heart, "Big Iron Horses"

Home | Main Index | Thread Index