Forest Park Yardgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Central of Georgia Railway Historical Soc : One Thread
Can someone please tell me if Forest Park Yard on the CofG Atlanta to Macon line dates back to pre Southern days or was it put in place after the merger. Also what purpose does it serve and why would they need another yard so close to Industry Yard at nearby East Point. Many Thanks, Warren
-- Warren D. Stephens (email@example.com), January 10, 2000
I read this with interest. My dad, Gary Skeen, designed Forest Park yard in 1970 or 1971 when he was in the Engineering department of the old Southern Railway. He told me that then-Division super Tom Gurley came in and handed him the track profile and said, "put me a yard right here". I was still in Jr. High then, but I remember accompanying Dad to the location where the yard is now and watching the old Alcos run back and forth out of the Market lead. I'm now a regular Conductor on the NS with 27 years of service and I work in this area daily. At present four jobs call Forest Park home, and all of either build the daily cut for Ford, or take it to Ford for spotting.
-- Tony Skeen (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 28, 2004.
With the recent increase of activity on this line, both Forest Park Yard and Industry Yard are busy places these days. The Forest Park yard is primarily used to hold auto parts boxcars for the Ford Plant and a couple of parts distributors in the nearby industrial park. A quick glance at Forest Park yard will show that about 95 percent of all the cars in it are the 86-foot auto part boxcars and other oversized dedicated cars. The tracks between Hapeville and Industry Yard are often clogged with switch locals and transfers, so it appears the railroad finds it convenient to move the parts cars up from Forest Park to Ford as part of the "just in time" delivery preferred by most auto plants. The Ford Plant has always been one of the largest industries in the state and just recently added another 50,000 square feet. I'm probably going to be proven by wiser authorities to be an incorrect idiot on this one, but I believe that the Hapeville plant was the only auto manufacturing plant located on the Central prior to the Southern takeover. I grew up in East Point and should know when the Forest Park yard was developed, but I must have lost consciousness and honestly can't say if it was before or after the Southern takeover. It does seem odd that the railroad would have two yards that close together, but the Central had a huge number of industrial customers in both areas at various times. Most of the factories and warehouses in East Point are boarded up and covered with graffitti now, but in the late 1950s the Central actually had six switch engine crews working that area daily.
-- Rob Richardson (RichDent10@aol.com), January 13, 2000.