RAILFAN GUIDES of the U.S.


Todd's Railfan Guide to
TIMONIUM MD

A Northern Suburb of Baltimore in Baltimore County

In General
Sights
Station by Station

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In General

The only thing of real train type interest in Timonium is the light rail, and for half of you, it's probably not a terrific draw to stop in Timonium. 

The only other item of significance are the Baltimore & Susquehanna marble ties, but they were only briefly uncovered during the 2005 double-tracking, so there is nothing to see any more.

The second railroad of Baltimore, the Baltimore and Susquehanna, came through here in 1831-32 heading to York and Harrisburg.  The railroad was re-organized as the Northern Central Rwy after a really bad accident in Ruxton/Riderwood killed 35 people, and the B&S was prompted to reorganize in order to stave off bankruptcy.  The B&S also built the Green Spring Branch, which the Western Maryland used in the beginning before they had their own route out of the city.  They built this route as an alternate way out of Baltimore when the state of Pennsylvania denied the Northern Central access to entering York County.  The R-O-W was double tracked and signaled by WW1.  Local passenger service, known as the Parkton Local, was discontinued in 1959.  Soon after, the line reverted to a single track with passing sidings.

More info at:
     http://www.mdoe.org/north_central_rr.html
     http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Central_Railway
     http://wikimapia.org/7137695/Northern-Central-Railroad-Pennsylvania-Railroad-Abandoned

There are no old NC/PRR depots in Timonium.

There are no fire or police stations in Timonium.  The closest fire station is #17 in neighboring Texas to the north, and Lutherville Volunteer Fire Company, station 30, to the south.  The Towson, and maybe the Cockeysville precinct handle trouble in Timonium.

Just north of Padonia Road, across from the Lowe's, the Glen Burnie/Cromwell trains "turn around".  During the double-tracking project, the MTA put in this really nice pocket track station like arrangement (like Camden Station), and the turn-arounds wait in the pocket track.

More info at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baltimore_Light_Rail


Maps

 

 


Sights


the Baltimore & Susquehanna RR Marble Ties

These fine examples of marble railroad ties date back to when the Baltimore & Susquehanna, precursor to the Northern Central, was heading north out of Baltimore in the 1834 time frame. 

When the MTA Light Rail was double tracking the northern section in 2005, they "uncovered" many of the ones still left in the old right-of-way.  There were two sections that we saw, one was under Padonia Road going several hundred feet to the south, the other section was at Industry Lane.  I tried like a bandit to get some of them saved, but neither the MTA nor the Maryland Historical Trust wanted to do so, stating that they should be preserved for the future when "we" will know more about discovering their secrets.  The letter I received also asked me if I knew anything about extracting historical artifacts out of the ground without damaging them, but a couple of days after I received that letter, people doing the R-O-W worked came along and scraped the top of several dozen of them while clearing the way for the new track - so much for the state being good guardians of our past.  So, they all got buried and none of us will ever see them again :-( 

 

The two aerial shots below show where the stones were uncovered and could easily be seen during 2005.




Light Rail - Station by Station


The Baltimore Light Rail system starts/ends on the northern part of the map in Hunt Valley, at the mall.  Too bad for riders, but by the time the current owner of the Mall told the MTA that they would love to have the Light Rail come into the Mall, the MTA already had started on building the station as it is now. 

There is only one stop in Timonium, which is the Timonium station, next to the fairgrounds. 

In addition, there is a pocket track adjacent to Lowe's where trains not going to Hunt Valley "turn around". 


Timonium Turn Around

My guess as to why they use the middle track as the turn-around track, is because there is only one crossover on the northbound side to go anywhere.  "They" unfortunately didn't place the switch for the third outside track after that crossover, it is "before " it.  The picture below illustrates this - the switches that are aligned for a crossover move are for the next NB train to move into the pocket track.  If this crossover had been placed further away, on the other side of the distant switch, then they could have used the outside track as the turn-around track, and let the SB trains run straight through..... just a thought..... less wear and tear over time.





       NB trains passing the pocket track.

      NB going into the pocket track.

       In the pocket track.

           SB trains passing the pocket track.

  Picture from the adjacent medical building and my doctors office, they think I'm nuts when I show up for an exam with my camera :-)

              Signals and signs.

               More signals and signs.

    Ductwork used for running the cables in, instead of running them overhead and/or on poles.

 


Padonia Road Overpass

One of the very few places where the road goes over the ex Pennsy right-of-way, built way before anyone even thought of having a light rail system.  Too bad there aren't more of them! :-)

  Looking south/1996.

  Looking north/1996.



Timonium

Timonium used to the be the last stop before the Hunt Valley extension was finished in 1997.  The three pictures below are from (about) 1995 when they were started working on the extension track.  The first two are looking north towards Cockeysville, the last one is looking south.







 



the Timonium Road crossing



Timonium Road when they were originally building the light rail system in 1989.  Years earlier, when they put a new grade crossing in, they at least planned for the future, but as things goes, when the line was double tracked later on, they wound up tearing the 1989 version out and rebuilding it - so why bother?  The siding going off to the left went into what used to be Saco Lumberyard, which is now in Cockeysville off Cockeysville Road, next to the tracks, but no longer has a siding going to it.



 

New 09/04/2007
Last Modified: 05/08/2016