SAL ATL-BHM line : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

I have seen the earlier discussion about this line. I have a couple ofquestions as I wonder why CSX would not want to at least rail bank this corridor. 1) Is the entire right of way from ATL-BHM preserved in some form? It looks like pieces are still in service, but the rest has had the lines ripped up. (In Cobb Co, near Atlanta, they have made part into a trail. At one point a new road has literally severed the old grade. I bridge would be required there I guess. 2) CSX traffic from ATL to Chattanooga and Knoxville goes through Marietta and splits at Catersville. The old SAL line had a spur from Rockmart to Cartersville, connecting to the both the state owned W&A line and nearby L&N Knoxville line. Looks like CSX may still use this (all the way to Cedartown?). The Question: If the SAL line were restored, would it not be possible to route some of the Chatt-ATL or Knox-ATL traffic off of the very busy W&A line and down a path Cartersville-Rockmart-Atlanta.? It may be a little longer that the W&A through Marietta, but it would seem cheaper to maintain an existing single track corridor than having to upgrade/double track the W&A all the way from ATL-Cartersville as CSX has stated they would like to do.

-- Tom Randall (, December 04, 1998


A recent article in the Atlanta paper said that the roadbed will form the basis of a proposed recreation trail that will eventually stretch from Atlanta all the way to Birmingham. This would indeed be quite the trail if it ever happens.

However, a couple of groups in Alabama and in Georgia are apparently toiling steadily toward this goal. (Good news for would be trail users - this line was constructed relatively recently, after heavy earth moving equipment had come into widespread use, so the profile is supposed to be flatter than most)

A few miles of roadbed near Piedmont, Alabama are paved now. One question not answered by the recent newspaper article is what to do about the few sections where the tracks remain in active service. Parallel the line I suppose.

Sometimes there is also noise made about constructing a new Atlanta airport out near Rockmart and using the roadbed for public transportation to reach this new facility. However, I read recently that Hartsfield is set to add a new runway or two, so it seens the current airport is here to stay.

-- Ron Wright (, December 07, 1998.

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