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Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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   Author  Topic: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail  (Read 518 times)
firstbelt
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Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
  2160a_CR_RS11_4-16-1978.jpg - 135971 Bytes
« on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:08pm »
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Thought I'd post some photos of the Pennsy Rochester branch and right-of-way now part of the Genesee Greenway (website link below).
http://www.fogvg.org/
 
The PRR ran up through western NY along the Genesee River, along the Letchworth gorge area to Rochester.  Predecessor Western NY and Pennsylvania (not the LA&L affiliate) had a passenger station at 357 West Main Street, according to "When Rochester Rode By Rail."  No trace left of it today.
The line split on the south side of Rochester near the airport, running up to the New York Central mainline to connect with the B&O along West Ave.
 
A Penn Central local at the end of West Ave. in 1978 heads south under the B&O trestle over the Central main:


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/2160a_CR_RS11_4-16-1978.jpg
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firstbelt
Historian
Posts: 707
Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #1 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:12pm »
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The line crossed the B&O main trackage above Chili Ave.
 
A PC local waits to cross the B&O in 1974.  An oil tank farm was served just south of here.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/2130a_PC_SW1500_1-1974.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #2 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:16pm »
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The line crossed Scottsville Rd just south of the Monroe County airport.  I encountered a local once in a while in the early 1970s when I commuted to RIT.  Here a local is heading north with a PC RS1 on a dreary day in 1973, brakeman flagging the crossing.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/2128a_PC_RS1_5-1973.jpg
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firstbelt
Historian
Posts: 707
Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #3 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:21pm »
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The line served a couple customers along Scottsville Road that dealt in construction materials.  Here, a PC SW1500 switches in 1977.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/2158a_PC_SW1500_4-17-1977.jpg
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firstbelt
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Posts: 707
Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #4 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:25pm »
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Looking south from the Greenway Trail recently toward the above scene, just north of I-390:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0189a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #5 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:28pm »
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A little farther north on the trail, with some signage:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0188a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #6 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:35pm »
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The Pennsy ran north from this point also along the Genesee River to connect with the Erie near downtown Rochester.  A trestle over the Erie Canal remains:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0185a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #7 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:39pm »
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The right-of-way continues through Genesee Valley Park.  In 1972, the transportation authority arranged to display some New York MTA commuter cars here.

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0173a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Posts: 707
Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #8 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:50pm »
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A small piece of trackage remains to serve 84 Lumber, south of the airport.  In the 1970s, Scottsville Rd crossed the branch via highway bridge.  As I drove to and from RIT, I recall seeing the battered remains of a Pennsy position-light signal.  The Genesee Greenway trail has a short gap from there to Ballantyne Rd, no doubt to keep folks away from railroad activity at Genesee Junction (CSX, RSR, and LA&L).
 
Next community heading south is Scottsville, where a trestle stands at Oatka Creek.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0241a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #9 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 10:56pm »
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View from the south end of the bridge above:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0240a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #10 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:00pm »
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Route 251 crosses the Greenway trail just south of Scottsville.  The former Erie branch is on the east side of the river, not far from here.
 
View north at Rt.251:


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0239a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #11 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:06pm »
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A little farther south was Wadsworth Junction, now marked by a sign at the junction of the Greenway Trail and Monroe County's Lehigh Valley Trail.
http://www.monroecounty.gov/parks-lehighvalley.php
 
It's about a 20 minute walk from the parking area at East River Road to the Genesee River and the remains of the Lehigh Valley trestle here.  The trail also crosses over the LA&L (former Erie) branch.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0707a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #12 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:15pm »
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I decided to walk a bit of the PRR right-of-way near Portageville in 2012, to see what I could of the ex-Erie trestle from below.  There is a small area to park on the east side of the Genesee River at Portageville.  In the 1970s, I recall a road up to the EL main at the east end of the trestle from there; the road is long gone.
A remnant of the PRR line over the river here:


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100-0230a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #13 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:18pm »
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The rougher part of the path joins the PRR right-of-way here:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0871a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #14 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:21pm »
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Plenty of discarded crossties lie along the hiking trail:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0872a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #15 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:26pm »
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If you look closely, you can spot coal and cinders along the trail:

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0881a.jpg
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firstbelt
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
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« Reply #16 on: Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:32pm »
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Just below the NS (former Erie) trestle, a small path runs down near the footings in the river.  A bit of the trestle is visible just left of center of the photo.  A plate at the base reads 1875.
In case you're wondering, it's not a good vantage point to see traffic on the NS mainline.  It was fun checking out the path and a different vantage point for the trestle, though.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/100_0873a.jpg
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Charlie Ricker
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
 
« Reply #17 on: Jan 4th, 2013, 5:15pm »
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Wow, this is VERY cool! Those are some fantastic rare shots!  
 
As a young child back in the mid-1970s I vaguely remember that crossing on Scottsville Road by the airport, but those memories are "faded" at best.  
 
Thanks for sharing these photos!
 
Charlie


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~Charlie Ricker

dj_paige
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Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
 
« Reply #18 on: Mar 10th, 2013, 6:16pm »
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Firstbelt -- these are impressive photos. I enjoyed seeing them. I have followed the Greenway from close to downtown Rochester to south of Scottsville, so it helps to read your descriptions.
 
I seem to recall bridge abutments where the PRR and NYC Peanut crossed south of Scottsville. I don't have pics though. Is my memory correct?


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Paige
"It's nothing until I call it!" -- NL Umpire and native Rochesterian Bill Klem
firstbelt
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Posts: 707
Re: Pennsy Rochester branch/Genesee Greenway trail
  Rochester.jpg - 43618 Bytes
« Reply #19 on: Mar 10th, 2013, 10:28pm »
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on Mar 10th, 2013, 6:16pm, dj_paige wrote:       (Click here for original message)
...
I seem to recall bridge abutments where the PRR and NYC Peanut crossed south of Scottsville. I don't have pics though. Is my memory correct?

 
Glad you enjoyed the photos.  I didn't really get to travel around to railfan until 1972.  By then PRR and the NYC Peanut Line were long gone.  I couldn't tell you if there were or are bridge abutments.  That would make sense, since railroads generally avoid crossing at grade.  The first line in place would have to grant permission for a crossing, so easiest way to go is over.  Stone or concrete abutments have a way of hanging around, so they may still be there.  Witness bridge abutments at Wadsworth Junction and Portageville.
 
I did a Google search and found a Wikipedia article on WNY&P 1895-1955
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_New_York_and_Pennsylvania_Railway_%281895%E2%80%931955%29
 
Another web page is "History of the Rochester Branch, Pennsylvania Railroad".  No map or mention of the area in question, but an interesting read anyway.  The writer would be the kind of person to ask.
http://crookedlakereview.blogspot.com/2008/09/history-of-rochester-branch.html
 
Here's a snip of the Rochester zone map from US Secretary of Transportation report of February 1974 (planning stages of Conrail).  Lines in existence didn't include the PRR or NYC Peanut.  Lesson here, I suppose, is track down what you're interested in while you can - people, railroads, whatever.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/PRR/Rochester.jpg
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« Last Edit: Mar 10th, 2013, 10:29pm by firstbelt » Logged
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