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At 65th St. in Emeryville, this is the look of the former Red Train route just a few years ago. The cars are spotted at the LSI plant. A hopper car is rare here, usually just corn syrup tanks. Although most of the tracks still exist as of this date (12/7/

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Guest   [May 07, 2004 at 04:13 AM]
Thanks for the great photos, I worked this industry job for many years, starting in 1965 for the SP, it was called the ninth st. job, the foreman back then was a man named John Pinkerton, there was a few more industries beyond the sugar house back then, but not many, this industry had a flop over switch, that when it rained would fill with water, a new employee would allways get a soaking the first time he would throw this switch... thanks again.
Guest   [May 03, 2004 at 03:19 PM]
I'd say about 50% of this line has already been ripped up north of Powell. From Powell to 61st is totally gone now. They're redoing the street between 59th and 61st and the rest to Powell was taken over by yet more condos. The track is still there between 59th and Ocean but its days are numbered. Id say by next year it will all be gone. Sad. I worked right around the corner in the 80's and saw these syrup trains almost on a daily basis.
Guest   [Oct 31, 2003 at 10:10 AM]
As a young teen-ager in the early 1960's, I used to frequent this area watching the local switching crew switch the numerous industries along this busy lead line. I remember the former Diamond Alkali facility here and the spur track where 1920-1950 era corn syrup tank cars were unloaded. Not too far from here on the east side of the lead line, there always seem spotted an old wood-sided box car on a spur. The last time I visited this area about the late 1980's returning to relive childhood memories, I saw an old wood-sided with steel ribs box car on Andrew trucks spotted at the same siding! It appears to be very recently spotted there at the time of my visit as the wheels and rails were still shiny. One day, the conductor waved my brother and I on board the tiger-striped Alco S1 switcher, and took us for a ride from the Shellmound Yard to 59th Street, where we were dropped off next to the Intenational Harvester(?) assembly plant! Frank Fong
anonymous   [May 03, 2004 at 03:45 AM]
Thanks for posting this picture and description. I have lived in Emeryville since 1996 and used to walk by these tracks all the time. The other day I was telling a friend about the syrup train. I took him for a walk to show him, but was surprised to see that the tracks and factory were no longer there. Of course my friend teased me to no end about the imaginary syrup train, asking me "where's the pancake train?". So, thanks for the picture - I was able to prove I wasn't making it up :)
Anthony A-train Flores   [Feb 06, 2005 at 08:38 PM]
This is a cool photo! Hopper cars were rare at LSI. For my job I used to paint the outsides of corn syrup tanks and always tried to time it so I had an "aerial view" of the switching operations.
cuzzy   [Apr 01, 2008 at 11:37 PM]
As an SP/UP Engineer I had the opportunity to work this industry. It was a challenge to avoid vehicles parking on the ROW, or driving with no regard to our train. We used a SW1500 out of West Oakland.
Sam   [Apr 02, 2008 at 12:34 AM]
Yes I've seen that happen with my own 2 eyes. I worked a block away and would sometimes hop in the car when I'd see the train cross Powell. One time I saw the train for a car that was parked with just a bit of the car on the tracks. I saw the train crew (probably you cuzzy) get off and look around for the owner. When nobody came along, I watched them push up and down on the corner of the car and during the upstroke of the car, gradually slide it away from the tracks. With all the small industry around there, this scene must have occurred often. The tracks are now all gone, the road has been reconfigured with new streetlights, curbs, and paving. Another piece of Bay Area rail history gone.

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