The Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor resulted from a struggle among the three major railroads in Los Angeles in the early 20th century to establish a location of its choice as the major port in the area. Southern Pacific’s long pier at Santa Monica and Santa Fe’s harbor at Redondo Beach both lost out politically to facilities in the area around Terminal Island between San Pedro and Long Beach. Union Pacific predecessor San Pedro, Los Angeles & Salt Lake was the big winner in this political struggle, since it owned most of the facilities and local access in that area. Its win turned out to be even greater when oil was discovered on Terminal Island, since it owned not only the land but the mineral rights on the whole island and much of the surrounding area.
Once the decision on locating the harbor was settled, all three railroads had to have lines to the harbor. Santa Fe developed its by building an extension from its existing line to Redondo Beach that split off from that line in El Segundo and headed to a new yard at Watson, just north of the harbor area in Wilmington. Union Pacific continued to use its San Pedro branch, heading south from Hobart Tower, which provided direct access to all of the harbor area facilities.
Southern Pacific had two lines to the harbor area: a ‘steam’ railroad down Alameda Street and the Pacific Electric line south of downtown LA, through Watts. After the cessation of passenger service on the Pacific Electric line to Long beach in 1961, SP operated these two lines as if they were parts of a single operational facility. The Alameda Street line was known as the “SP side” and the former PE line as the “PE side”. Both lines were capable of taking trains from the harbor to SP’s yards in downtown Los Angeles, and both had branches heading east from locations south of downtown that allowed trains to reach SP’s City of Industry yard without passing through the congested downtown areas. The line along Alameda Street has since been replaced by the multi-track Alameda Corridor line used by both Santa Fe and Union Pacific.
These routes cover(ed) the following subdivisions:
This line is operated as:
The Alameda Corridor was built in the early 2000s to replace all of the previously-existing railroad lines between downtown Los Angeles and the Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor area. Built on the right-of-way previously owned by Southern Pacific along Alameda Street, much of the line is in a trench depressed below grade level to avoid conflicts with road traffic anywhere along the line. There are three main tracks on the corridor, operated by Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) and dispatched from the joint BNSF/UP Los Angeles Area Dispatching center in San Bernardino.
From CP East Redondo (MP 0.0), where the two tracks coming from the UP Los Angeles subdivision join with the UP-owned connection coming south from the East Bank Line, three tracks head due west, crossing the Los Angeles River on a bridge newly-built with the corridor construction project to replace one that carried only a single track. On the west side of the river, the line passes under the equally newly built flyover that carries Amtrak and Metrolink trains between the West Bank Line and the Fullerton line, and crosses the former location of the Redondo Junction diamond (where Redondo Tower was and its shell remains). The line crosses over Washington Boulevard on a bridge. The tracks coming west from the BNSF Fullerton line join the corridor line from the southeast at CP West Redondo (MP 0.1), directly underneath the Santa Fe Avenue bridge, where the UP’s Alameda Industrial Lead to the J Yard and the remaining trackage along Alameda Street in Vernon splits off on the southwest side of the junction. There are also crossovers among the Alameda Corridor tracks at this point
The six-track J Yard is aligned northeast to southwest across a couple of city blocks, before the Alameda Industrial Lead’s residual trackage, serving Vernon Warehouse Company, turns due south at grade level. On the northwest side of the J Yard, the three Alameda Corridor tracks descend into the trench that will take them to Compton, curving from westward to southward as they do so, with crossovers at CP 25th Street (MP 0.4). Passing under 25th Street and 27th Street while still curving around, the tracks come alongside (but down below) Alameda Street on its east side. For the few blocks on which the Alameda Industrial Lead runs, the Alameda Corridor tracks run in tunnel, with the UP track on the street surface above them, until south of 38th Street. By the time the line reaches Vernon Avenue, the tunnel has become the trench, open to the air above, gradually widening as the last spurs above curve off to the east into the industries they serve, so that first one track is uncovered, then two, and finally all three.
The trench itself has tracks with concrete ties, concrete retaining walls, and concrete beams across the tracks at street level that help keep the vertical retaining walls from falling inwards. All of the major east-west streets cross the trench on grade-level bridges (from which it is easy to ignore the very existence of the trench. The main lanes of Alameda Street run along the west side of the trench all the way to the south end of Compton, while for much of the way there is an additional two-way street also called Alameda Street on the east side of the trench, serving the industries and businesses on that side of the corridor. At intervals along the trench are access mechanisms for Maintenance of Way and/or emergency workers, comprising a small platform at street level next to a gate in the chain link fencing along the sides of the trench, with a folding and extensible ladder attached that can be manipulated to provide a way of climbing down to, and up from, the track level.
The cross bridges are at Vernon Avenue (in Vernon), 55th Street, Slauson Avenue (Huntington Park), Randolph Street, Gage Avenue, Zoë Avenue, Florence Avenue (Walnut Park), a closed private bridge across to an industry where there is no street on the east side of the trench, and Nadeau Street. In the trench at the latter are crossovers at CP Nadeau (MP 4.1) At two of these, railroad tracks also cross overhead: the BNSF Harbor Subdivision at Slauson Avenue and the UP (former SP) La Habra Subdivision at Randolph Street.
The Los Nietos subdivision comes alongside on the east side of the trench just north of Firestone Boulevard (the former location of CP Firestone) and runs alongside on the east all the way south to CP Compton, crossing at grade all of the streets that have bridges over the tracks in the trench. These are Firestone Boulevard (in Southgate), Southern Avenue/92nd Street, Tweedy Boulevard, Century/Martin Luther King Boulevard (Lynwood), Fernwood/Santa Ana Boulevard, and Imperial Highway. I-105 crosses above both Alameda Street and the trench, there are street level bridges over the trench at Lynwood Road, Weber Avenue (Compton), where there are more crossovers in the trench at CP Weber (MP 7.9), El Segundo Boulevard, and Pine Avenue. There is a siding on the Los Nietos subdivision at Pine Avenue. Rosecrans Boulevard passes over both Alameda Street and the trench, after which there are street level bridges over the trench at Elm Street, Palmer Street/Carson Place, Compton Boulevard, Myrrh Street, and Alondra Boulevard.
Greenleaf Boulevard, in Compton, is the southernmost street that crosses over the tracks in the trench (and the Los Nietos subdivision at grade). The last concrete beams above the tracks are just north of the Greenleaf Boulevard bridge. South of that bridge, the three tracks in the trench rise up to the surface alongside the Los Nietos subdivision. The tracks then pass under the Route 91 and frontage road bridges. At CP Compton (MP 10.6), the Los Nietos sub connects into the Alameda Corridor, and there are crossovers among the three tracks, all signaled with signal bridges crossing the tracks.
UP’s Dolores Industrial Lead runs along side the tracks to the east from this point south. The Blue Line passes overhead on a flyover. The whole formation crosses over Alameda Street (from the east side to the west side of the street) just north of the latter’s intersection with Santa Fe Avenue There are more crossovers and signal bridges, and the Wilmington subdivision joins from the west side at CP Alameda (MP 11.7), located approximately where Southern Pacific’s Dominguez Junction once was. UP's Del Amo Industrial Lead, to the east, serves spurs for Universal Warehouse, McCarthy Draying, International Truck & Transfer, World Express-CFS Inc., Trade West Hardwood, Taoco Chemical, Witco, Quaker State, Southwest Plywood & Lumber, Paco Engineering, Nationwide Distributing Service, Western Sunset International, Carol Cable, Simmons USA, Lash, Strolle of California, CRW Warehouse & Distribution, Marchem, and Starkist.
The three tracks of the Alameda Corridor now run at grade along the west side of Alameda Street. There are more crossovers and signal bridges at CP Del Amo (MP 12.1). Del Amo Boulevard passes overhead on a bridge that crosses the track formations and Alameda Street, as does Dominguez Street. There are crossovers and signal bridges on tracks 1 and 2 at CP Tyler (MP 12.8), across Alameda Street from Tyler Street, just north of the UP locomotive stabling area once known (and perhaps still known) at the Dolores Roundhouse, on the west side of the main tracks, with the eleven tracks of the former SP Dolores Yard alongside to the east (between main tracks and street). There are detectors on all three main tracks at this location (MP 12.9).
UP's Carson Industrial Lead starts on the west side of the Alameda Corridor at Dominguez Street, with a spur to its west serving Commonwealth Carson Poli, Flex Corp., Ancon Transportation, Cal West Galvanizing, Nalco Chemical, Brookvale International, Fletcher Challenge Canada, Hunter Woodworks, Penberthy Lumber, Pacific Metals Service, Mark VII Transportation, State Iron & Metal, Alpert & Alpert, Niklor Chemical, Western Tube & Conduit, Rhodia Inc., Somerset Distributing, Bayer Corp., Ca. Reed/Westvaco, Barton Brands, EJS Lighting, Western Zinc, Diversified Products, Ortho Mattress, and behind a gate, Shell Chemical Company, and Burke Chemicals.
Carson Street bridges overhead, and there are signals on track 3 at CP Carson (MP 13.4), approximately where the two ICTF (Intermodal Container Transfer Facility) yard tracks leave the Dolores Industrial Track and cross Alameda Street on a bridge taking them to the seven track ICTF on the east side of the street (south of 223rd Street), with three tracks heading for the ICTF support yard between them and the Dolores Industrial Lead, east of the Dolores Yard. I-405 and 223rd Street pass overhead on closely adjacent bridges crossing all tracks and Alameda Street, with the nine tracks of the ICTF Support Yard alongside to the east of the Alameda Corridor (and west of ICTF) as all tracks cross a bridge over the Drain Channel.
Between I-405 and 223rd Street, a spur heads west serving Markstein Distributing, Mayfair Plastics, Lesbro/Fritz Transportation Services, International Paper Company, Crucible Steel, Good tables Inc., Color Tile, JW Carroll Chemical, Kraft food Service, Metro International, Sankyo, NipponDenso, Pioneer Video, Porteous Fastener, Parabam, Riken-America, Metro Warehouse, and Pacer International.
South of 223rd Street, a spur heads west to various spurs for Praxair, Geon Company, Witco Chemical, and Ventura Lesbro, while another spur heads west to sidings for Arco and the north end of the Arco refinery. There are four spurs east of the Carson Industrial Lead, switched by the industry they serve, ten spurs on the west side, switched by the industries they serve, and four spurs on the west side at the Arco refinery, crossovers and signal bridges at CP Dolores (MP 14.4), where Sepulveda Boulevard crosses overhead on another bridge that spans all tracks and Alameda Street. On the east side of the Dolores Industrial Lead are five spur for Ventura Transfer Company, and on the west side of the Carson Industrial lead, west of the Alameda Corridor tracks, are a connection from the Arco refinery, north of Sepulveda Boulevard, nine spurs for the Tosco (Union Oil) refinery, and west of them, four spurs for the Shell Oil refinery
There are more crossovers at CP Channel, near to the place the tracks bridge over the Dominguez Channel. At CP Sepulveda (MP 15.5), there are more crossovers and a junction with BNSF trackage from the north end of Watson Yard, beyond which, on the Carson Industiral Lead, are three spurs for K Pac. The line then turns southeast and at CP West Thenard (MP 16.1), ownership of the line passes to Pacific Harbor Line.
The remaining lines in the harbor area are now all owned by Pacific Harbor Line and cover the following subdivisions:
PHL takes ownership of the Alameda Corridor line at an end on junction at West Thenard (MP 16.1), where the UP Dolores Industrial Lead also rejoins. The line is CTC-controlled over its whole length. After crossing over Alameda Street) on a bridge, the line turns south again. Pacific Coast Highway (Route 1) crosses overhead on a bridge that was still being built in early 2004. The three main tracks reduce to two where the PHL Long Beach line splits off to the east at Long Beach Junction (MP 16.8). At Anaheim (Street), MP 17.3, (where the eponymous street crosses overhead on a bridge), the PHL San Pedro line departs to the west and the (former UP) Mead Transfer yard lies to the east, followed by spurs for Toyota and then spurs for Hanjin. At Dominguez (MP 17.5), the main tracks rise up on a series of bridges to crossover Henry Ford Avenue while lines at grade level connect to the San Pedro line to the west and the PHL Manuel line past the west end of Mead Transfer to UP’s Manuel Yard (at the end of the UP San Pedro subdivision) to the east.
At Badger Bridge (MP 18.2), the overhead lines and the grade-level lines come together and cross the Cerritos Channel onto Terminal Island via a bridge with a central lifting span, with the Terminal Island Freeway bridge immediately to the east. On the island, tracks separate to the east (to piers S and T, with spurs for Fremont Forest Products and Pacific Coast Recycling), west (Dow Chemical), and south (to the 22-track Global Gateway South on Pier 400, which has on-pier, ship-to-train container transfer facilities) at Mole (MP 18.7). A single CTC-controlled track continues west to the Los Angeles Transfer facility (the mothballed helical coal transfer operation) at LATX (MP 19.3) and the 31 APL/TICTF/NYK/Evergreen storage tracks to its north.
The Long Beach line heads east-southeast, away from Long Beach Junction (MP 16.8), with CTC-control as far as the diamond crossing with the PHL Manuel Subdivision at Crucero (MP 17.0x), after which there are two main tracks within Yard Limits. The line then passes the ends of six streets at grade in quick succession, in an industrial area just north of Anaheim Street. There are signals adjacent to Perry Avenue (MP 17.5x), and the Terminal Island Freeway (Route103) and Anaheim Street pass overhead. There are more signals at Gaspur (MP 17.7x), the east end of Mead Transfer connects in from the west, there are spurs on the south side for National Gypsum and Toyota Motor Sales USA, and there is a nine-track yard alongside to the south at Pier B Yard (MP 18.0x), with a spur for JH Baxter Company on its south side. The line crosses Pier B Yard Street at grade and turns due south on the west side of the Long Beach Freeway (I-710), crossing Pier C Street and Pier D Street at grade and passing a spur on the west side for Domtar Gypsum America.
There are more signals as the line passes under the elevated Ocean Boulevard (MP 19.2x), and past the Cal United Lead (California United, Pier B and Pier C, and Baker Commodities), as lines diverge to Cooper Steverdore, Hiuka America, Steverdore Service of America, and Fritz Maritime, and then Metropolitan Stevedore (Piers D, E, and F), and crossovers at Pier G Yard (MP 19.6x). At ITS (MP 20.4x), the lines to Agrex Inc., Ocean Salt/Chemoil, Metropolitan Stevedore, and California Sulfer (Piers F and G) diverge from the line to Pier J, which reduces to single track and turns east and then curves southeast and southwest around the Southeast Basin. At Switch 38 (MP 21.0x), two tracks resume, past spurs for Sea-Land Service to the east and International Transportation Service to the west. At PCT (MP 22.0x), the line heads momentarily westward, past spurs for Westway Trading Coropration, to the west/north, and spurs for PCT to the north, then curves around to the south and finally east onto Pier J at Maersk (MP 22.2x). There are on-dock container ship-to-train transfer facilities at all of the berthing locations on Pier J. Maersk no longer handles its containers here, their operations having moved to Pier 400.
The San Pedro line diverges from the main line to Terminal Island at the wye at Anaheim (Street) (MP 0.0) and heads southwest along the north side of the Dominguez Channel and the East Basin, with three spurs for Southern California Tank Car to the north. It is entirely single track within Yard Limits. There is a vacant spur on the north side. At Transfer Junction (MP 1.0), the PHL McFarland subdivision, coming down from its G Street end-on connection with the BNSF Harbor line from the south end of Watson Yard, and running alongside Alameda Street to the west, trails in from the north, and the line turns west, with the Avalon Team Track to the north. PHL has its main facilities at Pier A Yard (MP 1.5), at Fries Avenue, west of Avalon Boulevard. From this locations, various lines head south and southwest onto the various arms of Pier A, including the one where steel coils is loaded onto unit trains for transfer to steel finishing facilities elsewhere in Southern California.
The San Pedro line continues generally west, along the south side of Harry Bridges Boulevard to Figueroa (Street), MP 2.4, where there is a grade crossing into the West Basin Area, the line turns southwest, along the east side of John Gibson Road (with the Harbor Freeway, I-110, beyond that). There are spurs for Cargill to the east, the Department of Water & Power to the west, and for Union Ice & Cold Storage, Berths 136-142, Pasha Maritime Services, Toyota Autoracks and Berth 127 on the east side. At Tosco (MP 2.7), a spur to the west crosses John Gibson Road and passes under I-110 to reach the huge Tosco (Union) oil refinery located west of the freeway, with a passing track and vacant spur on the east side, and spurs for Amerigas Propane, Crescent Warehouse Company (passing under the Interstate) and Petrolane on the west side, further south. To the east of the line is the large American President Lines container terminal, with its on-dock ship-to-train container transfer facilities (three spurs). The south end of the APL facilities is reached at MP 4, also the end of Yard Limits and the end of normal daytime freight operations.
Here, the line is curving around to the south then east, and then south again, alongside Front Street. It passes under the Vincent Thomas Bridge, a massive suspension bridge crossing over the Main Channel to Terminal Island, as it turns south for the second time. There is a sand track, a vacant spur, and a spur for Westway Storage on the west side of the line, seven track for General American Transportation, two vacant spurs, and a yard track, on the east side of the line. The track from the Cruise Terminal, just south of the bridge, past First Street (MP 4.8) to San Pedro (MP 5.2) is used by the San Pedro trolley operation during the daytime. PHL operates freight trains along this section at night to Berth 49 (MP 6.0), the end of the line. Prior to the development of the coal transshipment facilities at LATX on Terminal Island, there had been a simple coal transshipment facility at the Berth 49 location, using a primitive-looking rotary car dumper for unloading the coal hoppers, where there are still twelve spurs for Kaiser International.
The UP San Pedro Subdivision has peddler freights serving local lineside industries (especially those using tank cars), plus trains of autorack cars apparently headed to a yard too far north to be served conveniently from the Alameda Corridor. This line, a single track initially within Yard Limits, leaves the UP Los Angeles subdivision on a wye at Downey Road (MP 2.8), west of East Yard. Both legs of the wye cross Washington Boulevard on concrete bridges, after which the single track line crosses the BNSF San Bernardino subdivision on a diamond at San Pedro Junction, MP 3.1, (formerly controlled by Hobart Tower on the northwest corner of the diamond) and crosses 26th Street, Vernon, at grade, after which, at Riddle (MP 3.2) connections from the BNSF line trail in to permit BNSF access to industries in Vernon served by the Los Angeles Junction Railway off this line. There is a crossing with the LAJ at MP 3.6, just on the south side of the bridge across the Los Angeles River.
Downey Road runs along the west side of the line as far as Slauson Avenue. Along this stretch, the line crosses Bandini Boulevard at grade, and passes a spur on the east side that serves spurs for Baker Commodities, Sweetheart Cup, Bettermaid Plastic/Koppers, Judson Steel, Bandini Fertilizer, West Coast Rendering, Estech General Chemical, Pehrig Pacific, NL Industries, Santa Fe Trails, National Can, Tomco, Clorox, F&S Distribution, Fortifibre, Kimbull Office Furniture, Agrashell, and Potlatch.
The line crosses the LA River on a girder bridge immediately preceding a spur on the west side for Clougherty Packing Company (Farmer John), and the LAJ diamond (MP 3.6) with northeast quadrant connector, passes spurs on the west for Kal Kan Foods, Continental Commodities, American Maize Products, Johns Manville, Packaging Corporation of America, Smart & Final, and Plastic Chemical Western, and then crosses Charter Street, Exchange Street, District Boulevard, Fruitland Avenue at grade, passes a spur on the west side serving Lubricating Specialty, Ladish Pacific, Alcoa, Norris Industries, BW Norton, Sandburg Furniture, Trojan Distributing, Huntington Park Storage, Crown Poly Inc., Norman Fox, WW Henry, Joe Levin Realty, Scott sales, Quality Wood, Howard Manufacturing, and Tonys Express, and crosses Slauson Avenue at grade.
At MP 5.1, the line crosses the La Habra sub. at grade, followed immediately by crossing Randolph Street, Huntington Park, at grade. There are signals protecting the diamond both north and south. South of this location, operational control switches to Track Warrants, issued by the joint LA Area dispatching office in San Bernardino. The line crosses Gage Avenue and Bell Avenue at grade. South of Gage, Salt Lake Avenue runs along the west side of the line, which slowly curves from south to southeast.
There are signals at Bell (MP 5.4), the line crosses Florence Avenue at grade, and a second segment of Salt Lake Avenue starts running along the east side of the track to go with the first segment on the west side. There are signals, a Team Track and a 3,740 ft. siding on the west side at South Bell (MP 6.2) and grade crossings at Otis Avenue and Santa Ana Street in Cudahy. At the latter, the western segment of Salt Lake Avenue ends. There is lineside industry with many tank cars on the west side of the line south of Santa Ana Street (Stauffer Chemical, Titan Terminal & Transportation, Owens Corning Fiberglass, Grace Davidson Chenical), and the Southgate Team Track to the east. There is a grade crossing at Ardine Street, a diamond with the Los Nietos sub. at MP 7.4, adjacent to Patata Street (which does not cross the line, but does end Salt Lake Avenue’s presence on the east side of the line), and a grade crossing of Atlantic Boulevard, South Gate, immediately south of the diamond.
The line crosses Firestone Boulevard at grade, as it turns south-southeast, and passes spurs on the west for McLeod metals and Dial-Purex, and on the east for Bell Foundry, followed by grade crossings of Rayo Avenue and Southern Avenue. There is another short segment of Salt Lake Avenue alongside to the west, after which the line crosses the Los Angeles River on a long multi-span through-truss bridge, passes spurs for WA Woods to the west, passes underneath I-710, and then crosses the Rio Hondo on a two-span girder bridge and turns due south. There are signals at Workman (MP 9.3), where there is a spur for A Finkl & Sons and a Team Track to the east, and grade crossings of Imperial Highway, Garfield Avenue, Gardendale Street, with the Hollydale Team Track to the east, Main Street, and a minor segment of Century Boulevard. Immediately south of the latter, the line enters Paramount and crosses over I-105 on a concrete bridge that also spans the MTA Green Line in the freeway median.
South of I-105, the line crosses the now empty right of way of the former Pacific Electric line from Watts to Santa Ana, part of which is now overlaid by I-105 itself, but becomes the Paramount Industrial Lead to the east. The UP branch then passes spurs for The Jankovich Company, to the west, crosses Rosecrans Boulevard, Somerset Boulevard and Jefferson Street at grade. There is a 5,915 ft. siding from Paramount (MP 12.5) to Rioco (MP 13.8), and in this span there are many tank cars parked at lineside industries on both sides of the line (the Paramount Freight House, ECOC Environmental, Western Consumers, Pacific Chemical and Master Processing, plus some vacant track, to the east, and the Foundry Track to the west).
The line runs through an industrial area, with street access only at the major street crossings at intervals of a mile (or half mile, in some places). The line passes over Alondra Boulevard on a bridge. Entering Long Beach, the line passes under Route 91 and crosses Artesia Boulevard, passes spurs for George Gunther and an old passing track to the west, a new passing track, Monsanto Chemical, Toyota Motor Sales and Eddington Oil Refinery, to the east, and crosses South Street at grade. At Douglas Junction (MP 14.6), the San Pedro sub. turns west-southwest while the Lakewood Industrial Lead continues straight ahead for 2.8 miles to its end near the Boeing (former Douglas Aircraft) manufacturing facilities at the west side Long Beach Airport. Both lines cross Market Street at grade within the same road crossing facilities.
The San Pedro sub. crosses over Cherry Avenue, Orange Avenue, Atlantic Avenue, Del Amo Boulevard, and Long Beach Boulevard on overhead bridges. It crosses over the Los Angeles River on a multi-span through girder bridge, there is a private grade crossing on the west bank of the river, the line passes under the elevated structure carrying the Blue Line tracks overhead, crosses the road entrance to the Blue Line Shops at grade and crosses over the Long Beach Freeway (I-710) on a multi-span through girder bridge. The line crosses Dominguez Street at grade, passes a spur on the west side serving a Foreign Trade Zone, Pacific Coast Container, Watson Land Company, Indio Production, the US Post office, NED Warehouse, and Cypress Land Company, and fifteen vacant spurs, and crosses Carson Street at grade, turning south-southwest in the process, passes the Carson Team Track to the east over Santa Fe Avenue on a bridge, under I-405, and across Wardlow Road at grade.
With high sound walls to its east (and west, at least for part of the way), the line turns due south alongside the former Southern Pacific ICTF to the west of the line, which has a connection to the Manuel Three storage track. There are signals at Carson (MP 17.7, the line crosses over Willow Street on a through truss bridge, and the Track Warrant Control that has persisted since the La Habra sub. crossing ends in favor of Yard Limits at the storage and passing tracks Manual One/Two (MP 19.2), to the west. The Terminal Island Freeway (Route 103) runs alongside to the east as the line passes through a floodlit area that includes the storage and passing tracks Manuel Three (MP 20.6), to the west, and Manuel Yard (MP 20.8). At the latter, ownership changes to Pacific Harbor Line and becomes the latter’s Manuel subdivision.
The line passes under Pacific Coast Highway; there are signals and a right-hand crossover between the two tracks at CP Farragut (MP 21.4), the line curves west towards the Dominguez Channel, turns west-southwest along the east side of that channel, and crosses the PHL Long Beach sub. at Crucero (MP 21.7). The now CTC-controlled line then passes beneath the Anaheim Street overbridge and connects with the west end of eight-track Mead Transfer (MP 22.1). The latter is filled with autoracks, but this locations isn’t enough of a backhaul from the Alameda Corridor to be responsible for autorack train still using the UP San Pedro subdivision. Beyond Mead Transfer, the line continues through Dominguez (MP 22.4), with spurs for PAC III and Chem Service to the west, and Arco and Dow Chemical to the east, to its junction with the Alameda Corridor line at Badger Bridge (MP 23.1), coming adjacent to the east side of that line as it does so.
The BNSF Harbor Subdivision still sees service three days a week from Watson Yard as far as the Chevron exchange sidings in El Segundo, and perhaps a little further north. From the north end, there is service as far as a lumberyard and the DWP pole yard near the Blue Line. In early 2004, there appears to be no service at all between the DWP pole yard and the vicinity of Los Angeles International Airport. The entire line from Harbor Junction (MP 0.1) to Watson (MP 26.6) and either West Thenard (MP 27.6) or G Street (MP 28.0x) is operated under Restricted Limits.
Immediately west of the bridge over the Los Angeles River, the Harbor Sub. splits away from the BNSF connection to the Alameda Corridor on its south side, crosses Harriett Street at grade, and then turns due south between warehouses and other industrial buildings. It crosses 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 37th and 38th Streets in Vernon, Vernon Avenue, Pacific Boulevard, 49th Street, Fruitland Avenue, and 52nd, 53rd, 54th, 55th 56th and 57th Streets at grade. South of the latter, the track starts to curve towards the west, crossing 58th Street and Santa Fe Avenue in the process, and comes long the north side of Slauson Avenue, heading due west. It now crosses 2nd Street in Vernon, enters Los Angeles again and crosses the UP Alameda Industrial Lead at grade, the Alameda Corridor on the Slauson Avenue bridge, and Alameda Street and Holmes Avenue at grade. The line then crosses the UP Wilmington sub. at grade, passing under the Blue Line bridge at the same location.
Continuing west, the line crosses Compton Avenue, Naomi Avenue, Central Avenue, McKinley Avenue, Paloma Avenue, Avalon Boulevard, Towne Avenue, San Pedro Street, Main Street and Broadway at grade. Interstate 110 passes overhead on its conrete bridge, and the line then crosses Figueroa Street, Hoover Street, Vermont Avenue, Budlong Avenue, Normandie Avenue and Denken Avenue at grade. Angling west-southwest, the line crosses Slauson Avenue itself at grade, then cutting across residential areas, crossing Western Avenue, Van Ness Avenue, 4th Avenue, 6th Avenue, 11th Avenue, 67th Street, Crenshaw Boulevard, Victoria Avenue, Brynhurst Avenue and West Boulevard at grade.
Entering Inglewood, the line crosses Redondo Boulevard, Centinela Avenue, La Brea Avenue, Ivy Avenue, Eucalyptus Avenue, Cedar Avenue, Oak Street, and Hyde Park Boulevard at grade. The line then turns due west and crosses I-405 on a through girder bridge sandwiched between two concrete bridges. After crossing La Cienega Avenue and Hinday Avenue at grade, the line turns due south, crossing Manchester Avenue at grade in the process, then crossing Arbor Vitae Street at grade. Entering Los Angeles again, and running adjacent to Los Angeles International Airport (to the west) and Aviation Boulevard (to the east) the line rises on a concrete bridge to pass over a parking lot entrance and then Century Boulevard, descending to cross road entrances to airport facilities across from 104th Street and 111th Street at grade, then crosses Imperial Highway at grade as it passes under the I-105 bridges and the Green Line bridge.
There are industrial-facility grade crossings at Northrop Gate 3, a passing siding at Lairport starts across from 114th Street, and there are more industrial facility grade crossings along the siding at Northrop Gates 4 (120th Street) and 5. South of the siding, the line rises to cross El Segundo Boulevard on a concrete bridge, then turns away south-southwest from Aviation Boulevard, crosses the ex-SP El Segundo line on a diamond, crosses Douglas Avenue at grade, and has a wye with the Chevron refinery oil tank sidings at the junction where the line down to Redondo Beach ran until the early 1980s. On its east leg of the wye, the Harbor sub. turns southeast, comes briefly under the overhead structures carrying the Green Line’s Douglas Avenue station, and then climbs onto a massive through truss bridge to cross the intersection of Aviation Boulevard and Rosecrans Avenue adjacent to the slender Green line bridge there. (Until the mid 1990s, the Santa Fe had used a smaller through truss bridge, here, until it was replaced to facilitate a road-widening scheme for Aviation Boulevard that has yet to be advanced at street level, in mid 2004.
Now in Hawthorne, the line continues southeast across Marine Avenue and Inglewood Avenue at grade, turns due south crossing Manhattan Beach Boulevard in the process, enters Lawndale and crosses 159th, 160th, 161st, 162nd and 170th Street at grade. The line enters Redondo Beach and crosses Artesia Boulevard and Grant Avenue on bridges, and crosses 182nd Street at grade. It then turns southeast into Torrance and crosses Hawthorne Boulevard and 190th Street on adjacent through-girder bridges. In an area of industries and petrochemical refineries, the line passes under Prairie Avenue. At Alcoa (MP 20.1), a spur track diverges due east to run alongside Del Amo Boulevard to a point east of Western Avenue. Alcoa is also the start of a 7,900 ft. siding to Torrance (MP 21.7). The line passes over Crenshaw Boulevard on a concrete bridge, turns due south and crosses Torrance Boulevard at grade. Running between two segments of Madrid Avenue in a secluded residential area, the line crosses a pedestrian grade crossing at El Dorado Street and crosses Sonoma Street and Carson Street at grade.
South of the latter, near a location called Ironsides (MP 23.3), the line turns southeast again, crossing Washington Street, Arlington Avenue, Cabrillo Avenue, Border Avenue and Sepulveda Boulevard at grade. There is a bridge over Western Avenue as the line enters Los Angeles (the strip connecting the city to the port at San Pedro). And a pair of bridges over the former right-of-way of a Southern Pacific branch south from Torrance and the immediately adjacent Normandie Avenue, in Carson. The line now turns due east and passes under Vermont Avenue and I-110 before crossing Figueroa Street at grade. It then passes over Main Street on a bridge and crosses Avalon Boulevard at grade. Turning southeast, the line crosses Broad Street, East Street and Wilmington Boulevard at grade.
At Watson (MP 26.6), the line splits into two, one leg turning east to run along the north side of Lomita Boulevard to Rolling Junction (MP 27.1), where one leg once went straight ahead to the SP line at Alameda Boulevard and the other still extant leg turns southeast to join the PHL Alameda Corridor and/or Long Beach line at West Thenard (MP 27.6) The other line at Watson turns south, crossing Lomita Boulevard at grade and joins up with an east leg of the wye that also crosses Lomita Boulevard at MP 26.2x. This line head due south to Watson Yard (MP 27.0x) and an end-on connection with the PHL at G Street (MP 28.0x), crossing under Pacific Coast Highway and crossing L Street, Denni Street, Grant Street and Anaheim Street at grade in the process. From the latter, its MP 0.0, the PHL McFarland subdivision’s single track Yard Limits line connects through McFarland (MP 0.6) to a connection with the PHL San Pedro subdivision at Transfer Junction (MP 1.2).
The UP (ex-SP) Wilmington Branch (the “PE side”) sees considerable traffic to Torrance and El Segundo, including the Robertson Ready Mix rock train to Hawthorne and tank cars to and from the Chevron Refinery in El Segundo, all of which must travel over the northern part of the Wilmington line. There is not much traffic on this line south of Watts. The line starts out on the north side of the Alameda Corridor line adjacent to the six-track J Yard (across the corridor tracks), heads due west across Alameda Street at grade, turns southwest, crosses 24th Street at grade, with a spur on the south side for Downtown Metals and several vacant sites, and the Santa Monica Branch departing on the north side, turns due south, crossing the eastern side of Long Beach Avenue in the process, and comes along the east side of the Metro Blue Line in between the two halves of Long Beach Avenue. There are numerous signals along the stretch from east of Alameda Street to the crossing of Long Beach Avenue.
For the next several miles, as far as Slauson Avenue, the line runs along the east side of the Blue Line light rail tracks, crossing 41st Street, Vernon Avenue, and 45th Place at grade in the same crossings as the Blue Line, passing under a pedestrian bridge at 54th Street, passing spurs on the east side for Cereal Food Processors and Container Recycling Alliance, with various Team Tracks, and crossing 55th Street at grade. North of Slauson Avenue, the Blue Line tracks rise up on an elevated section, which will descend on the east side of the Wilmington subdivision tracks, south of Slauson Junction. There is a 10,032-foot siding (making the line appear to be double tracked) all the way from CP “Nadeau”, before the line comes alongside the Blue Line tracks until just north of the BNSF Harbor Line diamond on the north side of Slauson Avenue. The south end of this siding is under the Blue Line elevated track structure at Slauson Avenue
The line crosses the BNSF Harbor Subdivision on a diamond signaled as part of the Slauson Junction complex, and then crosses Slauson Avenue at grade. Immediately south of the street, the north leg of the Slauson Junction wye turns east, and a little further south, the south leg of the wye joins from the east, comprising the connection with the La Habra branch. Now on the west side of the Blue Line, the Wilmington sub. crosses 60th Street, Gage Avenue, and Florence Avenue at grade. There is a pedestrian overbridge at 75th Place, and a grade crossing at Nadeau Street. There is a signal bridge just south of Nadeau Street, with a spur on the east side for Vargas Furniture Manufacturing, after which the line crosses Firestone Boulevard on a bridge. There are grade crossings at 92nd Street, Century Boulevard, and 103rd Street. From Florence Avenue to Nadeau Street, and again from Firestone Boulevard to Century Boulevard, Graham Avenue runs along the east side of the various lines. There is a 15,259-foot siding (named “Carson”) from the south end of the Slauson Junction complex to the north end of the Watts junction area, again giving the appearance of having double track through the area.
The old Pacific Electric depot at Watts still exists on the east side of the line (actually, east of the Blue Line) immediately south of 103rd Street. There is a pedestrian overbridge at 104th Street. The El Segundo Industrial Lead leaves the line and turns away to the west at Watts, just south of the 103rd Street road crossing. Also at this location, the Pacific Electric line towards Santa Ana used to depart towards the southeast, along a right of way that still exists, shorn of track, in the immediate vicinity of Watts and for much of its length. From 103rd Street south, Willowbrook Avenue runs alongside the lines to the east. The line crosses 108th Street and Wilmington Avenue at grade, and then passes underneath the Imperial Highway overbridge and the bridges carrying I-105 and the Metro Green Line overhead.
South if I-105, a second segment of Willowbrook Avenue runs along the west side of the tracks all the way to Greenleaf Boulevard. The line crosses 119th Street, 124th Street, El Segundo Boulevard, 130th Street, Stockwell Street and Rosecrans Avenue at grade, mostly in the same crossings as used by the Blue Line. There are signals to the north of Rosecrans Avenue, underneath another section of Blue Line elevated track. The line crosses Elm Street, Compton Boulevard, Myrrh Street and Alondra Boulevard at grade. There is a pedestrian overbridge at Caldwell Street, and a grade crossing at Greenleaf Boulevard.
The line then passes spurs on the west side for Brookville/Fritz, Charlton, Vigon Lighting, Cambridge Distributors and Lash Distributors; for Continental Candle, Midas Express, Southbay Public Warehouse, LIgholier, Delta Tire, Cal Pac Terminal, Rolling Hills Plastic, Scandiline Industries and Exotic Woods; and Orange Plastics, beneath the Route 91 bridges, past a spur on the west side for Fina Oil & Chemical, KG Distribution, CCC Steel, Florence Filter, and Ralphs Grocery, crosses Manville Street at grade, Passes the spur on the east side serving Chem-Tanner, Cal-Metals, and Felix Magnet Company, on the east side of the Blue Line, and joins with the Alameda Corridor line at CP Alameda, the former Dominguez junction.
The UP (ex-SP) Los Nietos branch leaves the UP. Los Angeles subdivision at Bartolo on the east bank of the San Gabriel River, continuing south along the river bank and across the BNSF San Bernardino via Fullerton line on a diamond directly beneath the Slauson Avenue bridge at DT Junction (MP 3.4). The line then swings east, maximum speed 15 mph, onto the continuation of the La Habra subdivision and passes under I-605. It then crosses Pioneer Boulevard (MP 3.9) in Santa Fe Springs at grade, and at Pioneer (LN039) splits off from the Brea Chemical Industrial Lead (which continues straight ahead across the Los Nietos (BNSF)/Santa Fe Springs (UP) diamond with the BNSF main line) and turns south across Los Nietos Road into the small (nine-track) Los Nietos yard (MP 4.2), with spurs for All Pure Chemical, California Corrugated Iron, Crockett Container Corporation, State Pipe & Supply Company, Angeles Welding & Manufacturing, and Primary Steel. At the south end of that yard, maximum speed `10 mph, two tracks cross Smith Avenue at grade, headed due south, and then crosses Telegraph Road on a through girder bridge.
The line then turns southwest, crossing Pioneer Boulevard (again) and Florence Avenue to the northwest of and adjacent to their intersection, passing under I-5 into Norwalk, across Orr & Day Road at grade, past the Studebaker Passing Track (MP 6.3), and under the Firestone Boulevard bridge. Immediately southwest of this bridge is the Studebaker wye, with the Los Nietos branch using the west curve to turn northwest, while the east curve turns onto the Anaheim Industrial lead, which is also accessible in a direct southeastward direction (inline with the continuing Los Nietos branch) from South Studebaker. (The wye is laid out like this because the former SP Santa Ana line that became the Anaheim Industrial Lead was worked as a single line from Firestone Junction to Santa Ana; latterly, the Anaheim Industrial Lead is worked from the Los Nietos Yard.) Immediately west of South Studebaker (MP 7.3), the Los Nietos branch (aka Patata Industrial Lead), maximum speed 10 mph, crosses Studebaker Road at grade, and then crosses Hoxie Avenue at grade before passing under the I-605 bridges (including at least one adjacent street). There is a signal just east of Hoxie Avenue, facing east.
West of I-605, the line crosses the San Gabriel River in Downey on a multi-span through girder bridge, and then crosses Regentview Avenue, Stewart & Gray Road, and Woodruff Avenue at grade, passes a vacant spur on the north side, crosses Lakewood Boulevard at grade, passes spurs on the south side for BCI Coca-Cola Bottling, crosses Patton Road, Brookshire Road, Dolan Avenue, and Downey Avenue at grade (MP 10.2), passes a south-side spur for Leach Grain-Milling Company, crosses Paramount Boulevard and Rives Avenue at grade, paralleling Firestone Boulevard just a half block south of that street all the way. Firestone Boulevard turns due west and crosses the line at grade at its intersection with Old River School Road. The line then turns gently west-northwest, crossing the Rio Hondo on a multi-span through girder bridge, crossing Garfield Avenue at grade just south of its junction with Eastern Avenue, passing a north-side spur for General Cold Storage, crossing I-710 on another through-girder bridge and then crossing the Los Angeles River on a multi-span through-truss bridge.
Before reaching Atlantic Avenue, there are spurs to the south for Schultz Steel and north which are vacant, Patata Street comes alongside to the north at the Patata Team Track (MP 12.9). At Atlantic Avenue, the line crosses the street and then the UP San Pedro subdivision on a diamond (MP 13.1) on the west side of the street. There is an industrial complex on the north side of the line (serving LA Chemical/Triton Chemical, US Gypsum, PO Corporation, and Key Container), and spurs on the south side for Ameron, Minerals Research, Pabco Gypsum, and Southgate Storage, after which Independence Avenue runs along the north side of the line all the way to Long Beach Boulevard. There is a grade crossing at Otis Street, after which Ardmore Avenue runs along the south side of the line all the way to Santa Fe Avenue. There are grade crossings at San Juan Avenue, California Avenue, and State Street, the State Street Team Track to the south, Long Beach Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue.
West of Santa Fe Avenue at the former location of Firestone Junction (now Firestone Park, MP 15.9), the line curves around to the south and runs along the east side of the Alameda Corridor trench and then surface line all the way to CP Compton (MP 21.7) where it ends. The line crosses at grade all of the streets that cross over the trench on bridges. North of 92nd Street, a spur on the east side serves Westside Distributors. South of Lynnwood Road, a spur to the east serves Goldenburg, Cargill Corn Milling, and McWhorter Technologies. North of Myrrh Street, a spur to the east serves Contractor Cargo.
From the south end of the Los Nietos sub., the Reyes Lead crosses the east part of Alameda Street and serves spurs for Porter Warner Industries, Boise Cascade, Scholle Corp., Westinghouse, Metal Clad, National Indoor Swap Meet, Apple Plastics, Geon Automotive, Crossfield Products, Compton Container Corp., Cal Style Furniture Manufacturing, Allied Upholstery, Harold Ledward, Pioneer Plastics, Torn & Glasser Inc., Wincpu Inc., Advance Manufacturing Corp., American Racing Equipment, Brookville International Corp., Everyday Products Inc., Willamette Industries, Anco Fire protection, Crain Western, Baker Tanks, Distribution Service/Coast Freight, James River Corporation, Grayson Roberts, and Taylor.
There are no longer any through freights from points east of Bartolo to Dolores and beyond on either of the former SP branches joining the north-south harbor lines from the east. There is still considerable traffic across DT Junction south of Bartolo, since the Santa Ana branch is served that way with peddlers to lineside industries in Anaheim and Buena Park departing the Los Nietos subdivision at Studebaker.
The UP (ex-SP) La Habra branch leaves the Los Nietos branch at DT Junction in Santa Fe Springs, using a balloon track (because there is no space on the river bank for the west leg of a wye) to turn west-northwest (in a direct linear continuation of the line taken by the Los Nietos branch as it passes under I-605 and the Brea Chemical Industrial Lead east of that). The line crosses the San Gabriel River into Pico Rivera on a multi-span through-girder bridge immediately west of DT Junction. There is a signal east of Passons Avenue, the line crosses Passons Avenue, Serapis Avenue, Rosemead Boulevard and Paramount Boulevard at grade, and passing a south side spur for Lubricating Specialties Company, before crossing the Rio Hondo on a multi-span through-girder bridge into Commerce.
Crossing Telegraph Road at grade, the line then passes under I-5, crosses Gage Avenue at grade and turns almost due west. Passing through the industrial area of Commerce, with the trackage of the Los Angeles Junction Railway to the north, the line passes a spur for WR Grace on the south side, crosses Greenwood Avenue at grade, passes a vacant spur on the south side, a spur for Western Steel Cutting on the south side, and spurs for ICI Paints on the north side, and crosses Garfield Avenue at grade. Entering Bell Gardens (with Commerce and the LAJ just to the north side of the line), the line passes a spur for Southern California Edison on the south side and the Walker Passing Track (MP 4.8) on the north side, crosses Eastern Avenue at grade and then crosses I-710 and the Los Angeles River on multi-span through-girder bridges.
Entering Bell, and running along the north side of Randolph Street (with another segment of Randolph Street to the north side of the line as far as Maywood Avenue, the line crosses Alamo Avenue at grade, passes the LA Junction Railway interchange (MP 5.6) trailing in on the north side, crosses Heliotrope Avenue, King Avenue, Atlantic Boulevard, and Flora Avenue at grade, followed by Gifford Avenue, Maywood, Carmelita Avenue and Maywood Avenue at grade. There is a signal facing east just to the east of Maywood Avenue, protecting the diamond crossing with the UP San Pedro line (MP 7.3) just west of that street. There is a west-facing signal west of that diamond, followed by a grade crossing of Boyle Avenue. Here, Randolph Street splits into two segments, north and south of the tracks, with the westbound lanes north of the track and the eastbound lanes south of the track.
The line crosses Arbatus Avenue in Huntington Park, Miles Avenue, Seville Avenue, Rita Avenue, and Pacific Boulevard at grade in a residential area, followed by Rugby Avenue, Malabar Street, Santa Fe Avenue, Albany Street and Regent Street in a decaying industrial area. The line then crosses both segments of Alameda Street at grade, with the bridge over the Alameda Corridor (on Randolph Street), in between them. There is a signal at Huntington Park, MP 9.4, between Alameda Street and Wilmington Avenue. The line crosses Wilmington Avenue at grade, splits into two legs at the east end of Slauson Junction, and both legs cross Homes Avenue at grade. One leg turns north, with a narrow curving segment of Randolph Street on the northeast side, to meet the Wilmington sub. at the north end of Slauson Junction, under the Blue Line station just south of Slauson Avenue. The other leg turns south, with a narrow curving segment of Randolph Street on the southeast side, to join the Wilmington sub. at the south end of Slauson Junction, just south of the 60th Street grade crossing, again under the Blue Line viaduct above.