Mansfield to Bloomington
This abandoned railway began as part of the Danville, Urbana, Bloomington and Pekin Railroad, chartered in 1866, which built a line between Bloomington and Champaign/Urbana. Before the line was even completed, the DUB&P itself merged with another line to become the Indianapolis, Bloomington and Western Railway 3 years later on July 20, 1869. The line was completed shortly thereafter.
The line went through many owners over the years as railroad companies merged and bought out others. Previous owners include the CCC&StL, NYC, PC, and Conrail; it eventually came under the control of the Peoria & Eastern, and finally of the Norfolk Southern, who filed for abandonment for this portion of the line west of Mansfield in March of 2004.
Today, the tracks are still present along the route, but are in disrepair and overgrown with vegetation. The remainder of the line between Mansfield and Champaign is seldom used for local freights of the Norfolk Southern.
that should be the line from mansfield to urbana sees quite a few locals during a week, especially during harvest moving grain from the andersons @ rising. the ic/cn has trackage rights from champaign out to the andersons and usually run at least twice a week
Actually the company ran further west to Pekin Il. See http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/map_item.pl
Actually, where did you get your info that the line was abandoned in 2004? There is a very high-end fiber optic cable
buried under the right-of-way. I thought this is why NS mothballed and railbanked rather than tore up and sold the land? Thanks.
The line is NOT Abandoned, but does have a discontinuance of service over it. NS explored abandonment, including an environmental study, but dropped the idea in order to keep CN out.
Norfolk Southern has filed for abandonment as of spring 2017. The process is expected to take a few months, and I could easily see track being removed in the near future. A few communities along the line are talking about a possible trail on the old right of way.
The Rail has been removed at this time between Bloomington and Downs, and the Crews are working to remove the rest between Downs and Mansfield.
I e-mailed the website commentator three pictures all taken at the Hamilton Street crossing looking North on Conrail's former Peoria & Eastern in Bloomington, IL.
It was sad to see the tracks pulled, but understandable.