March 1920, No. 265 Canadian Railway and Marine World (Toronto) Page 124, col. 1

Grand Trunk Railway construction, betterments, etc.

Work Done in 1919—The length of the G.T.R. maintained and operated under corporate control, and exclusive of lines under the United States Railroad Administration, during 1919 was 3,618.05 miles. On lines in Canada, 289 miles of new 85 lb. rail were laid during 1919, of which 121 miles were laid on lines east of Toronto and the balance west of there. Seventy-three miles of 100 lb. rail were laid, where there is very heavy and fast traffic on the main lines. Partly worn 80 lb. rail was laid to replace rail of lighter sections, on the more important branch lines, and 15 miles of partly worn 100 lb. rail were relaid on the St. Thomas Division, joint section between Fort Erie and Welland Jct., Ont. Approximately 250,000 cu. yd. of ballast were put under the track on Ontario Lines, west of Toronto, and about 310 miles on the Eastern Lines, east of Toronto, were lifted, surfaced and dressed with new ballast. During the year 2,287,000 cross ties were renewed, this quantity being about equally divided between the Eastern and Ontario Lines. The company bought and applied 296,000 rail anchors and about 234,000 tie plates for all lines in Canada.

At Gravenhurst, Ont., important work was done in connection with track changes, and in constructing a new brick and wood station, concrete platform, restaurant and freight shed, immediately adjacent to the main street and a short distance from Gull Lake summer resort. A mechanical coal chute has been practically completed at Muskoka Jct., about half a mile south of the new station at Gravenhurst. A coal chute was built and put into operation at Victoriaville, Que.

A shop for fabricating steel bridges was built at East Toronto. The locomotive house at York, near Toronto, which had been closed for a number of years, was repaired, remodelled and reopened.

A new yard was constructed at Port Colborne, Ont., containing 3 1/4 miles of track, to serve the Canada Cement Co., the Maple Leaf Milling Co., and the Dominion Government elevator. The locomotive house at this point was enlarged to take care of additional locomotives.

One mile of double track was laid through the yard at Welland Jct., Ont., and between that point and Fort Erie the embankment was strengthened by putting in 15,000 cu. yd. of filling. New 100 lb. rail was laid across the Niagara Falls steel arch, the floor system was strengthened and an entirely new deck put on it.

The building of concrete piers on the Narrows swing bridge at Atherley Jct., Ont., was taken in hand, piling was driven and coffer dams completed and, it is ready for cement work, preparatory to the construction of the draw span.

New ties were framed and placed on 6 spans of the Victoria Jubilee Bridge, and the planking on the roadway of this structure was renewed. A number of bridges were renewed.

A pumphouse, with electric pumps, was built at Richmond, Que. A 60,000 gal. water tank was built at Bowmanville, Ont. A 100,000 gal. water tank and extension to freight shed were built at Madawaska, Ont., were erected, this point being a district terminal for the 31st district between Ottawa and Depot Harbor. At the latter point an office building was erected.

The renewal of the ferry dock at Cobourg was completed. From this point a subsidiary company operates car ferry steamships to Rochester, N.Y.

A number of stations were extended at various points and stations were built at Mitchell, Palgrave, St. Agapit and Mille Roches. A heating system is being installed at Stuart St. station and offices at Hamilton, Ont. The track scales at Midland, Ont., were moved to Tiffin, and new scales were installed at Windsor, Ont., at a cost of about $7,600.

A great number of bridges, buildings, water tanks, etc., were painter, culverts renewed, single and double tool houses constructed, ties renewed on bridges, and numerous concrete crossing signs, whistle posts and section posts were built. In the track department, while it was possible to keep regular sections fairly well manned, there was more or less difficulty in obtaining labor for the extra gangs and it was necessary to pay very high rates for this class of labor. On the Eastern Lines there were from 1,500 to 2,000 men employed during the summer, doing extra work, such as lifting in new ballast, laying rail, applying tie plates and rail anchors, etc. In the bridge and building department there was a considerable shortage of mechanics, especially on lines west of Toronto.

The amount of money spent on maintenance and new works during 1919, greatly exceeded that of former years, partly due to the fact that there was a considerable amount of maintenance which it was absolutely necessary to defer during the war period.

Railways: G.T.Ry.