Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad

Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad
Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad
Reporting mark CORP
Locale Weed, CA - Eugene, OR - Coos Bay, OR
Dates of operation January 1, 1995–
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) (standard gauge)
Length 330 miles (530 km)[1]
Headquarters Roseburg, Oregon
Website railamerica.com/railservices/corp.aspx

The Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad (reporting mark CORP) is a Class II railroad[2] operating between Northern California and Eugene, Oregon, United States. It was previously a mainline owned by the Southern Pacific Railroad (SP) between Eugene and Weed, California (north of Redding, California) via Medford, Oregon. SP sold the route on December 31, 1994, in favor of using its route to Eugene via Klamath Falls, Oregon and Cascade Summit.

The total length of the CORP is 330 miles (530 km), consisting of 303 miles (488 km) mainline and the 136-mile (219 km) Coos Bay branch, another line once owned by the SP. Traffic, as of 2008, is estimated at 27,000 cars per year, consisting mainly of lumber products.[1] CORP is a subsidiary of RailAmerica, which acquired the railroad in 2000.[1]

On May 17, 2007, CORP was awarded a Silver E. H. Harriman Award in Group C for the railroad's safety record in 2006. This award marked the first time a RailAmerica-owned railroad has earned a Harriman award.[3]


Siskiyou Pass

In December 2007, CORP announced it was cutting shipments over the Siskiyou Pass south of Ashland, Oregon beginning January 15, 2008. Shipments from Ashland and areas north of Ashland would be re-routed north to Eugene before heading south via Klamath Falls. Reduced shipments would continue over the Siskiyou Pass until April 15, 2008 on a bi-weekly basis.[4]

On March 20, 2008, CORP announced plans to keep its Siskiyou line open between Medford and Weed, and to spend nearly $5 million on improvements to the line.[5]

Coos Bay Line

The Coos Bay Line was opened for traffic in 1916 between Eugene and Powers via the communities of Veneta, Noti, Swisshome, Mapleton, Cushman, Canary, Reedsport, Lakeside, Hauser, North Bend, Coos Bay, Coquille and Myrtle Point. Trackage beyond Coquille was abandoned and subsequently removed in the 1980s.

On September 21, 2007, CORP elected to shut down most of the Coos Bay branch. The track is was closed between Vaughn (west of Noti) and Coquille (south of Coos Bay). This action was taken after it was revealed that the nine aging tunnels on the line required repairs that were internally estimated to cost up to $7 million.[6]

On October 23, 2007, the Port of Coos Bay filed a $15 million lawsuit against CORP, in response to its closing of the Coos Bay Branch. The suit claims that CORP failed to provide the required 180 days' notice that it would shut down a leased spur to the bay's North Spit.[7]

On November 21, 2008, the Surface Transportation Board ordered CORP to sell part of the branch to the Port of Coos Bay for $16.6 million. The 111 miles (179 km) segment links Danebo and Cordes. The price was between what RailAmerica, CORP's corporate parent, had desired ($25 million), and what the port had initially offered ($15 million).[8] The Port completed the purchase of the line in 2009 and is currently repairing the tunnels that led to the line's closure.[9] The Port expects to reopen the line late in 2010.


Further reading

  • Robertson, Donald B. (1998). Encyclopedia of Western Railroad History - Volume IV - California. Caldwell, ID: The Caxton Printers. ISBN 0-87004-385-4. 
  • Stindt, Fred A. (1996). American Shortline Railway Guide - 5th Ed.. Waukesha, WI: Kalmbach Publishing. ISBN 0-89024-290-9. 
  • Walker, Mike (1997). Steam Powered Video's Comprehensive Railroad Atlas of North America - California and Nevada - Post Merger Ed.. Faversham, Kent, United Kingdom: Steam Powered Publishing. ISBN 1-874745-08-0. 

External links

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