Wabash Freight House Demolition

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cjberndt
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Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by cjberndt » Mon Oct 13, 2014 5:30 am

The Wabash freight house at Harrison & Melita Sts. will be gone by the end of Oct. Site clearing began a week ago. The north side (photo 977) is clear and they are working on the south side (974).

The concrete floor of the former buildings west of the remaining building are still in place. I don't know if the contractor will clear that before taking the building down. The intent is to completely clear the site.

I walked through the building with the contractor in mid-Sept. and took photos. There was nothing worth salvaging except a sample of the ironwork on the big doors. No date stone on the building. The second floor is accessible by bucket truck, and it looks like the first floor. The tiny basement at the east end is accessible through a small wall opening on the north side, but no reason to go in it.

Craig
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Wab Frt Hse 09-17-14 int lk E 744.jpg
Wab Frt Hse 09-17-14 int lk W 743.jpg
Wab Frt Hse Harrison lk W 10-12-14 977.jpg
Wab Frt Hse Harrison lk W 10-12-14 974.jpg

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rrnut282
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by rrnut282 » Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:43 pm

Sad to hear it will bite the dust soon. Is there a plan for something to back in the site?
rrnut282
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cjberndt
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by cjberndt » Mon Oct 13, 2014 6:17 pm

AEP bought the site from NS and plans to put a substation on the south part, probably in 2015-2016. There were once a few dozen houses here on several abandoned streets, so there are a few underground utilities to relocate.

This photo was at the west end of the concrete foundations of the buildings that were removed some time ago (foundation visible at right-center). It's about 400 ft. from this end to the original building in the distance.

The buildings on this end were metal pole and Quonset buildings. There was also another brick storage building north of the exiting building, on the west side of Harrison. It was there in the 1950s. I don't know when it was demolished.

Craig
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Wab Frt Hse 09-17-14 W end lk E 927.jpg

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Bob Durnell
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by Bob Durnell » Wed Oct 15, 2014 9:52 pm

Sad to see. I knew the odds of the building getting repurposed were slim, but you always hope. The thing that seems strange to me is, this has to be one of the larger tracts of open land in all of downtown, and using even part of it for a substation seems like an enormous waste of the property. Now for the questions; Which freight house in Fort Wayne was the last to actually be used as a railroad freight house in the traditional sense, and what year did that come to an end?
If my opinions offend you, you should see the ones I keep to myself........

cjberndt
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by cjberndt » Sun Oct 26, 2014 5:45 am

The single story west end of the building was demolished Friday. Most of the concrete west of the building is gone.

The merchandise train in the background had 8-9 locomotives. I missed it at Edsall Ave., and when I arrived in New Haven the front end had passed and it was running east on the NKP.

Craig
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Frt Hse E End 10-25-14.jpg
Frt Hse W End 10-25-14.jpg

Mark
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by Mark » Sat Nov 01, 2014 2:13 pm

The man who pulled most of the datenails around the
freighthouse is wellknown to me.

Mark

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Hotbox
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by Hotbox » Sun Dec 14, 2014 11:30 am

Everybody see the article in today's "Perspective" section of the J-G? I was by there this past Friday, and while I'll say that it is an impressive piece of property now that it's been cleared off, I don't see much demand likely to materialize for it, anytime soon. It's not only a depressed neighborhood, but it is a depressing neighborhood, as well.

It would appear sensible to keep AEP from constructing an impediment to future development (the Substation out on the corner of Lima and Wallen roads being such an example). But at the same time I can't imagine that segment of Town becoming "hot" anytime in the fosreeable future.


http://www.journalgazette.net/opinion/c ... an-3978923

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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by cjberndt » Sun Dec 14, 2014 7:46 pm

The substation location isn't the author's only issue. It sounds like the intent is to make it a very big substation with substantial towers going in various directions (he mentioned the tower planned for the Baker St. PRR station's parking lot), which would not have a positive visual impact on the redevelopment of downtown.

The Lima-Wallen substation was built in 1913 when the interurban line to Garrett converted from AC to DC operation. It shows us that they do remain in place forever, at least in most cases. Clearly, initial site selection is a big deal with respect to future development of an area. Maybe the "freight house" substation should be elsewhere. Downtown can be served without the substation being downtown.

Craig

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Hotbox
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by Hotbox » Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:29 pm

>> Downtown can be served without the substation being downtown.<<

Well, let's not overlook the existing "Webster Street" sub-station right across Melita. Not only does that substation serve much of Downtown, but a sizable residential area (south all the way to Rudisill blvd in many instances) as well.

It is also a point of convergence on the 33.6 KV grid, intercepting lines from the McKinley Substation (via Taylor st) the Petit-Hanna Substation (via Hanna street north to Dewald and then underground the rest of the way to Webster), and the Superior st. substation (via Fulton st.)

As the article states, the substation does not HAVE to be on that specific piece of dirt, but I'd imagine that somewhere in the vicinity will still be crucial because of this. Move it very far and the cost of moving those 33.6 K trunks will be a factor.

'
What I think Mr Bandemer and the rest of the redevelopment goons seem to conveniently overlook is that Fort Wayne is never going to be another Chicago, no matter how much of the tax payer's money he squanders chasing the rainbow.

At the end of the day, Ft Wayne is still going to be a hick town out in the middle of the soybean patch. SO why must we insist upon making it an expensive place to live, to boot?
Last edited by Hotbox on Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Hotbox
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Re: Wabash Freight House Demolition

Post by Hotbox » Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:37 pm

Clarification: I've always seen this "freighthouse substation" as a updated replacement for the Webster street substation, which is a relic from City Light. That way they can build the replacement while the existing continues to serve it's base. The problem being in selecting ANY site for the new substation, what neighborhood full of NIMBYs wants the honor? That might make the freighthouse location best suited, compared to alternatives.

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