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Archive: ‘Train/Railroad Stuff’...

Toast Our Region on the Niagara Wine Train

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

A new way to enjoy Rochester's wine trails, Niagara Wine Trail Train Excursions will begin on September 27. [PHOTO: Mike Dorofy]
The Niagara Wine Trail—right in our backyard—features 20 wineries and stretches from Lewiston to Rochester, along the Niagara Escarpment and the Lake Ontario shore. This region has been quickly gaining national attention for the variety and quality of its wines, including late-harvest, ice, and traditional vinifera. Now you can experience the Niagara Wine Trail in true style; via train…

(more…)

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014
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Posted in Art + Culture, Events, Rochester Destinations, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff | No Comments »

Rochester Subway Tunnel To Be Sealed Off By Luxury Apartments

Monday, September 8th, 2014

This proposed luxury apartment complex by Morgan Management could permanently close off one of the last remaining entry points to Rochester's old subway tunnel. [IMAGE: Morgan Management]
Several years ago the west end of Rochester’s abandoned subway tunnel was filled as part of the Broad Street Improvement Project. Now a planned downtown development could permanently close off one of the last remaining entry points to Rochester’s old subway tunnel. Morgan Management is waiting for approvals to build a five-story luxury apartment complex at Court Street and South Avenue, right smack on top of the subway’s east entrance and the former site of the Court Street subway platform…

(more…)

Monday, September 8th, 2014
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester News, Rochester Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Development | 26 Comments »

New Exhibit Honors the Hojack Swing Bridge

Monday, April 28th, 2014

The control room of the Hojack Swing Bridge has been recreated at the NY Museum of Transportation. [PHOTO: Flickr, M J M]
Rochester’s beloved Hojack Swing Bridge has been gone for more than a year, but now a new exhibit at the New York Museum of Transportation will honor the history of the former Rochester landmark. The exhibit is a re-creation of the bridge’s control cabin and contains the original steam engine, control devices, and a working model of the bridge…

(more…)

Monday, April 28th, 2014
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 3 Comments »

Rochester Subway Tours This Weekend

Friday, October 4th, 2013

A tour of Rochester's abandoned subway tunnel. [PHOTO: RochesterSubway.com]
I often get asked if there are tours of the Rochester subway. The short answer is no. The longer answer is while there is no official tour of the “subway,” every October there is usually a tour of the “historic Erie Canal aqueduct.” And it’s coming up this weekend…

(more…)

Friday, October 4th, 2013
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Posted in Events, Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Exploration | 5 Comments »

All Aboard The Ontario Car Ferry!

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Station, Rochester, NY. [PHOTO: Provide by Al from Wolcott, NY]
I get a ridiculous amount of email here in the Rochester Subway. Most of it isn’t really worth sharing but occasionally I get a diamond in the rough. So here’s one from the mailbag…

Al from Wolcott, NY sent me this great photograph today along with a question. He writes, “Someplace on the internet I recently ran across a comment that the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburg Railroad terminal was the place where people boarded a passenger train for Charlotte and then got on a boat for a trip to Cobourg, Ontario. Can you confirm this?” Yes. Yes I can. But first, let’s look closer at this photo…

(more…)

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 15 Comments »

LEGO Travel Adventure at Strong Museum

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

LEGO Travel Adventure exhibit at The Strong, National Museum of Play. Now thru May 12, 2013. [PHOTO: RochesterSubway.com]
I took a few hours to have some fun this week at The Strong, National Museum of Play. They’ve got a killer exhibit going on right now, through May 12. A history of transportation built entirely out of LEGO! I haven’t geeked out this bad since Norm Abrams came to Chase-Pitkin for a “This Old House” book signing. Check this out…

(more…)

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013
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Posted in Art + Culture, Events, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | No Comments »

Happy Birthday, Grand Central Station

Friday, February 8th, 2013

A view of the interior of the grand concourse of New York's Grand Central Terminal with Kodak Colorama in the background. Some time after the morning rush hour. January 9, 1968. [IMAGE: AP Photo]
Lots of stories about Grand Central Station have been flying around the internet these past few weeks. The station first opened its doors on Feb. 2, 1913. And no matter how grand it may be, 100 years is nothing to take lightly. Especially considering how many “grand” stations have fallen to the wrecking ball before. In 1968, the New York City’s Landmarks Commission denied a developer permission to demolish much of the upper level concourse and the Vanderbilt Room. A 55-story tower was planned to take its place. That Landmark Commission was formed in 1965 after the demolition of Penn Station – which was equally as beautiful. The photo above was taken just after the morning rush hour, on January 9, 1968…

(more…)

Friday, February 8th, 2013
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Posted in New York City Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 2 Comments »

New Aerial Photo of Hojack Swing Bridge

Friday, January 18th, 2013

Old site of the Hojack Swing Bridge near the Port of Rochester. [AERIAL PHOTO: Bob Biakowski]
Today’s Fun Foto Friday may not be very fun for rail fans and admirers of the old Hojack Swing Bridge near the Port of Rochester. This is an aerial photo of where the bridge used to be. The shot was taken just a few days ago, on January 14, by Bob Biakowski. Here’s what it looked like before it was dismantled…

(more…)

Friday, January 18th, 2013
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Posted in Rochester Images, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff | 4 Comments »

Saving Car 60: The Last Passenger Car From Rochester’s Subway

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

The last remaining Rochester subway car... #60. [PHOTO: Christopher Hauf, Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum]
Hopefully you caught yesterday’s story, “Rochester’s Adventure in Optimism” about the defunct Rochester subway. If you missed it give it a read. Originally published in the City Newspaper in 1983, the article mentioned the sole surviving subway car, car #60, and the effort to bring it back to Rochester and restore it to working order. Yesterday I received a more detailed explanation of those restoration efforts from Otto M. Vondrak, one of the trustees of the Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum in Henrietta, NY. Here’s the story of subway car #60 from Otto…

(more…)

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013
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Posted in Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester News, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 2 Comments »

The Rail Bridge over Letchworth Park: Should it stay or go… or both?

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

The Portageville Bridge over Letchworth State Park looking south from the Middle/Upper Falls Picnic Area. [PHOTO: RochesterSubway.com]
The Portageville Bridge which carries the Norfolk Southern railroad over the Genesee River in Letchworth State Park was built in 1875 after a fire destroyed the former wooden bridge. The steel frame bridge, which towers over the river gorge and its waterfalls, has become a beloved feature of the park and is now on the National Register of Historic Places. But a 2008 inspection external link by Modjeski and Masters external link revealed structural deficiencies, and it was determined that the current bridge should either be rehabilitated or replaced. The question is what to do with the old bridge once a new one is built. State officials are now soliciting comments from the public on three different options…

(more…)

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013
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Posted in Rochester Images, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 15 Comments »

Left for Dead: Rochester’s Union Depot

Friday, November 9th, 2012

Rochester's NY Central (Bragdon) Station half demolished, c.1970? [PHOTO VIA: John R. Stewart]
I know I keep coming back to this over and over and over again. But I just can’t believe we intentionally reduced this once world-class rail station to rubble only so we could pay tens of millions 50 years later in an attempt external link to build a much smaller and less impressive imitation of what we once had.

I’m not going to say much more about it. I just wanted to share these recently found photos of Rochester’s half-demolished NY Central (Bragdon) Station. Like a decapitated, rotting corpse left to rot in public as a reminder of a brutal ‘auto’cracy. Most of the building was torn down in the 1960′s but one section stood like this for over a decade before it was finally removed altogether and replaced with the current Amtrak building in the mid to late 70′s. Oy, how painful…

(more…)

Friday, November 9th, 2012
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Posted in Rochester History, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Development | 9 Comments »

State Takes Rochester Rail Station Project From City

Friday, October 26th, 2012

New York Central Railroad Station c.1905-1914 [PHOTO: Detroit Publishing via Library of Congress]
First, a little bit of history. The building shown above was one of Rochester’s earliest rail stations. Make sure you click to see all the great detail in the photo. It was located on Central Avenue between St. Paul & Clinton near the site of the current Amtrak Station. This view is looking west from Clinton Avenue, sometime between 1905-1914. In 1914 this station was replaced by the great Bragdon station in 1914, which was demolished in 1965…

(more…)

Friday, October 26th, 2012
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 11 Comments »

Rochester’s Miniature Polar Express

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

This model railroad display at the Garden Factory features three trolleys and four loooong trains; over 100 train cars in all.
If you’re looking for something to do with the kids while they’re off from school for the holidays, grab your conductor hats and head out to the Garden Factory [mapexternal link]. They’ve got a 60′x20′ model railroad on display thru the end of the month that you won’t want to miss.

(more…)

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011
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Posted in Art + Culture, Train/Railroad Stuff, Video | 4 Comments »

Today, August 25, in Rochester History: Railroad Disaster Claims 29; Injures 62

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Scene of terrible disaster on Lehigh Valley Railroad near Rochester N.Y. on August 25, 1911. [PHOTO: A. Newman, Copyright 1911]
One of the deadliest accidents* in our area’s history took place exactly 100 years ago today. 29 people were killed and 62 injured when a Lehigh Valley Railroad train derailed about 20 miles east of Rochester. According to investigators at the time, it was a defective rail on a 400 foot bridge in Manchester, NY that shattered into seventeen pieces and sent at least 3 of the cars into Canandaigua Outlet. Newspaper reports described the scene as a “twisted and splintered mass of wreckage.”

(more…)

Thursday, August 25th, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Train/Railroad Stuff | 17 Comments »

Clang Clang Clang … Went the Trolley

Friday, July 8th, 2011

A reader's photo of a bell her family has had for a REAL long time. Now she knows it's from the Rochester City and Brighton Railroad Company (c1860-1890).

Recently I received an email from a local woman asking for help identifying an old bell with some strange letters. She states quite simply, “I have an old bell with these letters RC&BRR. Can you give me any information on this?” Right away I recognized those letters…

(more…)

Friday, July 8th, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Train/Railroad Stuff | 11 Comments »

55th Anniversary of Rochester’s Darkest Day

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

These notices were posted in anticipation of the end of passenger service in the Subway on June 30, 1956. [Image from Railroad.net]

As we look back on 55 years without our subway, the U.S. Highway System celebrates its 55th birthdayexternal link. Coincidence?

Some old photos of Rochester’s lost subway after the jump…

(more…)

Thursday, June 30th, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 7 Comments »

Caution: This McDonald’s Ad May Offend You If You’re From Far Rockaway

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

McDonald's pulled this ad because it may have offended residents of Far Rockaway. [PHOTO: NY Daily News]
This recent ad on the NYC Subway caught my attention. I grew up riding the L.I.R.R. between Manhattan and my home town of Valley Stream on the south shore. Far Rockaway is the eastern terminus of my line, and where I suspect many LIRR and Subway riders over the years have found themselves after a little in-transit catnap. So to me, this McDonald’s ad is pretty funny. Residents of Far Rockaway didn’t see the humor and demanded that the ad be pulled. Mickey D’s gave in. I still find the ad funny.

Hey, is it just me, or does anyone else think there are far too many McDonald’s ads on mass transit? I’ll have to do a post on that.

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011
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Posted in New York City Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 3 Comments »

A New Intermodal Station For Rochester, New York.

Monday, May 16th, 2011

A New Intermodal Station for Rochester, NY. Conceptualized by the volunteers at Reconnect Rochester. Email them to find out how to pre-order this print.
The folks at Reconnect Rochester have been busy. They’ve come up with a pretty nice concept for a new Amtrak/Greyhound/Trailways intermodal station. Share it around. Maybe we can get it built!

> Check it out at ReconnectRochester.orgexternal link

Monday, May 16th, 2011
Posted in Rochester News, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Development | No Comments »

Today, February 18, in Rochester History: Abraham Lincoln’s 10 Minute Pop-in

Friday, February 18th, 2011

On February 18, 1861, Abraham Lincoln addressed over 8,000 Rochesterians from his train's observation platform. He was traveling thru to Washington D.C. for his inauguration. [Cartoon from 'Mr. Lincoln and New York' © 2002-2011 The Lincoln Institute.]Here’s a fun fact you can impress your friends with on this glorious Friday in Rochester… Today is the 150th anniversary of perhaps the most famous tour stops in Rochester’s history. On February 18, 1861 good ole’ Abe Lincoln popped in to say ‘Hey dudes!’.

(more…)

Friday, February 18th, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Train/Railroad Stuff | 4 Comments »

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