Old 08-02-2019, 02:45 AM   #1
Joe the Photog
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Default Corman Gets A New Property in South Carolina

It's been six or eight months, but RJ Corman took over the switching ops at the old Bowater plant in Catawba, South Caroluna that had until then been handled by the two Class 1 carriers in the area, NS and CSX, and before them their predecessors since opening in 1959.

This is not hard news what I am about to share, just some rumors I heard from trusted sources. I never would have gone with this is my news journalist days. I heard there were several bidders including Gulf & Ohio. My understanding is that a few of the guys from the nearby L&C were already planning to move to the new territory when Corman came in and undercut their offer.

It always intrigues me when a new operator moves in. I don't know if railroads work like this or if I just think they do. But the next logical step would be for Corman to get the track into Rock Hill. Right now, NS brings the trains down and corman does not stray out of the yard. Meanwhile, the L&C technically has track right up to the Bowater plant including the Catawba River bridge even though they do not currently use it much north of AmeriSteel in Lancaster other than storing some cars. (And I have not rode that way in a while to see what is along Riverside Road in Lancaster since moving back to the Columbia area.)

It stands to reason to me (again, maybe not to them) that getting the track to Rock Hill would be the next step. On the other hand, I have heard that Corman may be having a few issues with working the plant so there could be a new contract to come up to a bid soon.

In the meantime, RJC sent two SW1500s too work the plant which I have not yet been able to shoot.
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Old 08-02-2019, 02:58 AM   #2
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I do not believe the Corman Catawba operation has made it to RP yet, but Travis Mackey shared this shot on flickr --

RJCS 94585 at Bowater Yard by Travis Mackey, on Flickr
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Old 08-07-2019, 01:44 AM   #3
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Cool shot of a couple of unique units!

These industrial switching contracts are cut throat, Joe. RJC has gone after them aggressively over the past couple of years.

A big turnover is coming soon, with Watco taking over terminal switching operations in Savannah, GA from Genesee & Wyoming. G&W seems to focusing less on these contracts as of late. There just not be enough money in it for them anymore.
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