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Cost of Repairs - NWP Track North of Windsor

At the NCRA Board of Directors meeting today, NCRA will be presented with an estimate to repair the rail line from Windsor to Redwood Valley, which is North of Ukiah.  In the report, NCRA will be presented with four different scenarios, and will decide which repair scenario is the most economical for them to proceed with.

  1. Windsor - Redwood Valley (59.4 miles)
    1. Estimated Cost from NWP - $20.7 million
    2. Repairs line to North end of siding, MP 122.3
      1. Replace 52,004 ties
      2. Repair/Replace 52 bridges, 326 culverts, 5 tunnels, 27 crossing surfaces, & 23 grade crossing warning systems
      3. Assumes repairing grade crossing warning systems, not replacing them.
  2. Windsor - Ukiah (52 miles)
    1. Estimated Cost from AndersonPenna Partners - $45.8 million
    2. Repairs line to central Ukiah
    3. Assumes replacing all grade crossing warning systems, not repairing them.
  3. Windsor - Cloverdale (27.7 miles)
    1. Estimated Cost from NWP - $5.1 million
    2. Repairs line to south end of Cloverdale tunnel, MP 85.6
      1. Replace 12,258 ties
      2. Repair/Replace 24 bridges, 94 culverts, 0 tunnels, 16 crossing surfaces, & 8 grade crossing warning systems
      3. Assumes repairing grade crossing warning systems, not replacing them.
  4. Cloverdale - Redwood Valley (36.7 miles)
    1. Estimated Cost from NWP - $15.6 million
    2. Repairs line from South end of Cloverdale tunnel to North end of Siding, MP 122.3
      1. Replace 39,746 ties (estimated)
      2. Repair/Replace 28 bridges, 232 culverts, 5 tunnels, 11 crossing Surfaces, & 15 grade crossing warning systems
      3. Assumes repairing grade crossing warning systems, not replacing them.


It looks like they are going to try for option 3, which is repairing the line to Cloverdale (apx. $5 million).  A more detailed repair analysis can be seen here:

Just thought I'd post this for everyone, in case they hadn't seen it yet.

James Bradley, Jr.

Oakley, CA

Views: 1166


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Comment by James Bradley, Jr. on June 10, 2019 at 4:55pm

I actually didn't know anything about the Eureka Southern.  Now that I've read the history of the line, and of the Eureka Southern, it makes sense why UP wasn't included.  For some reason, I thought the line passed straight from SP to NCRA, and much later (1990's) than it actually did.  In reality, SP hadn't owned the line north of Willits since before 1981.

Since the derailment was a Eureka Southern derailment, and not SP, I now understand how it is NCRA's liability to clean up the mess.  Thanks.

Comment by Dave S. on June 10, 2019 at 4:02pm

Mr. Bradley:  didn't SP sell all the assets north of Willits to Eureka Southern, and by doing so completely washed their hands of any and all liability?  Then when Eureka Southern went bust the NCRA was created and took over, and now owns all liability?  (Something like that anyway.)

Comment by James Bradley, Jr. on June 9, 2019 at 11:18pm

I didn't say "no action on the part of NWP", I said "no action on the NWP", meaning no construction, trains moving, etc.  There has literally been no action on the NWP.

I am well aware that NCRA is at fault for not restoring the line, and that they are solely responsible for the condition of the line north of Healdsburg.  I am also aware of their funding issues.  One thing I never understood...why did the "Friends of Eel River" sue NCRA when it was Southern Pacific who made all of the environmental messes in the canyon?  Shouldn't they have sued Union Pacific?  When Union Pacific acquired (merged) with Southern Pacific, they absorbed all assets and liabilities of that company.  Those liabilities should've included the need to do an environmental cleanup of the canyon.  I am sure this has been discussed previously, but it just seemed strange that FOER didn't pursue action against the company that actually caused the environmental issues instead of bankrupting an already cashless organization.

I realize that this is a fan-site for those who love the NWP.  I, too, would love to see freight rolling again along the NWP.  However, it doesn't appear realistic that we are going to see that any time soon.  I, for one, would rather see the green and silver bugs zooming back and forth between Cloverdale (and maybe even Ukiah) than nothing at all.  If SMART is able to get things moving again, than I fully support them in their endeavors to get some sort of rail traffic moving again along that corridor, even if it is passenger only.

Comment by Richard C. Brand on June 9, 2019 at 10:16pm

Thanks Emilio for asking as there is an NCRA meeting in Healdsburg this week.


You wrote " action on the NWP...." but it is not within the NWP's pervue to rebuild the line north.  Presently this is the responsibility of the NCRA which is basically bankrupt.  But while State Senator Mike McGuire has a bill pending in the State Senate to turn over the NCRA ownership to SMART.

But I have attended many of the SMART Board meetings and it is obvious to me that SMART has neither the funds nor the expertise to take on control of this part of the line.  Also SMART is funded by a sales tax in Marin and Sonoma counties and not Mendocino county which is north of Cloverdale. 

So I would not expect any progress within the next 10 years.

Comment by James Bradley, Jr. on June 9, 2019 at 8:49pm

I don't even remember posting this, or where I got the information from.  No...there has been no action on the NWP, which is why the legislature is pushing for SMART to take over control of the line.  If SMART decides to build north of Cloverdale (which is doubtful), the line will require a complete reconstruction.  There is much more damage to the line now than there was even 5 years ago.

A few crossings had new signals installed several years ago, but that is the only work that has been done north of Healdsburg.

Comment by Emilio Galo on June 9, 2019 at 6:30pm

Correction: 5 years.

Comment by Emilio Galo on June 9, 2019 at 6:28pm

Is this plan still in motion? I know it has been 4 years since this post was originally posted but has anything happened for this proposal?

Comment by Mike Cook on March 31, 2014 at 1:35am

I know one thing, trains running again to Ukiah, Redwood Valley and Willits can't come soon enough!

Comment by Mike Cook on March 27, 2014 at 3:02am

I got a reply from Doug today-



The Board has decided to request a TIGER VI planning grant as opposed to a construction grant.  There is a $60 million allocation in the current TIGER VI program for planning grants. The intent of the planning grant is to fund the necessary analysis that goes into the restoration grant which we are targeting for next year’s TIGER VII grant program.


Doug McCorkle

Comment by Richard C. Brand on March 26, 2014 at 11:03am

In reading this chain I'm hearing some whining about PGE, politics etc.  My city has their own utility system so luckily we don't have to rely on those killers, but for those of you that do, don't complain.  Send a note to pge in your utility bill telling them to SUPPORT our local railroad, not fight it.  Same with Alexander Valley Vineyards.  I know those folks and they are still family (locally) owned.  Send them a note as I will.

The more radical approach is to threaten to boycott products although tough for you others to do with pge.  Citizen boycotts are a powerful thing.


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