Shortline Profile: Kendallville Terminal



Shortline Profile: Kendallville Terminal

The Kendallville Terminal Railway Company is owned by Pioneer Railcorp of Peoria, Illinois. The line operates a half mile of trackage in its namesake town in northern Indiana. The line was originally built as the Grand Rapids & Indiana (GR&I) which later came under control of the Pennsylvania Railroad. The line became Penn Central in 1968 and was conveyed to Conrail upon its creation in 1976. Being of secondary importance to the new railroad portions of it were abandoned over the years with this segment in town being seperated from the rest of the line. The KTRy was formed in the late 1990s when the industrial trackage in the city was purchased from Conrail by the operators of the nearby Michigan Southern and became known as the Kendallville Divison of that road. Eventually the Michigan Southern system was purchased by Pioneer and the line was granted its own operational autonomy.

The line's only long-time customer is Kraft Foods, who recieves granular sugar and corn syrup for the manufacture of marshmallows. Kraft recieves cars every day, usually three or four cars of corn syrup and one or two of sugar. Recently an unidentified industry in town began recieving bulk shipments of salt by rail, usually two or three a week. This if offloaded at a small facility recently built on the passing track just south of Rush Street.

The line's locomotive is an EMD SW8 originally owned by the Ludington & Northern in Michigan. The unit could be easily modeled with a repainted Life-Like model and some custom decals. Rolling stock on the line consists of modern corn syrup tankers from a variety of sources and two-bay Airslide covered hoppers mostly painted for BNSF and its predecessors. Just recently the line began recieving 3-bay cylindrical covered hoppers of salt for another industry in town.

Operations are based near the Kraft plant on Ohio Street on the south side of town. The line's office is in a former Norfolk Southern MoW caboose located next to the tracks. When not in use the locomotive is kept on the lead to Kraft adjacent to the office.

The Kendallville Terminal would be a wonderful prototype for the modeler short on resources. It's small size would mean a fully prototypical layout could be operational in short order. The limited variety of freight cars needed for operation would also simplify matters. For the modeler looking for more variety, a spur in the yard could be designated as a team track and could in theory recieve cars for other industries not located along the railroad itself. The possibilties for this are endless.

Further Reading:
Kendallville Terminal Webpage
Kendallville Railfan Page
Pioneer Railcorp
Looks like a prototypical version of John Allen's Timesaver. :) Would certainly make for a great shelf switching layout.
I just took a closer look at the caboose photo, and noticed that it's "less trucks and couplers" :)

I hadn't read closely enough the first time to see that it was the yard office, rather than being in service.