MÄRKLIN & RAILROADS
www.trains-and-trains.dk : A personal view by Christian Vinaa
USA : Ohio : Durand
Michigan might not be the state that have the most rail-traffic and rail-fanning places, but there are quite a few nice railfanning opportunities - Durand Union Station - Michigan Railroad History Museum being one of them.
As I've indicated, Durand is worth a detour. The actual traffic is not so heavy, much less than i.e. Fostoria, but Durand is on the main line between Canada / Detroit and Chicago. There is also a few AMTRAK trains actually stopping at Durand each day.
There are three main attractions, as I see it.
While getting to the Durand Union Station will require some navigating through local streets, once there you get free parking and plenty of foto-spots on the platform.
There is an annoying metal fence between the platform and the rails. Since the station is within the city limits the trains can not sound their horns, so you have to be a bit alert. Luckily the trains are not allowed to pass the small diamond at full speed, so they have to slow down to about 30-40 MPH.
There are some nearby crossings that might be helpfull in warning you.
Durand is also one of the few stations left that have a AMTRAK service; the Chicago-Port Huron line.
The station building is truly one of a kind. Beautiful architecture and a lot of well-kept details from when it was most used.
To quote :
"During the early 1900's when the railroad industry was at its peak, 42 passenger trains, 22 mail trains, and 78 freight trains passed through Durand daily. Durand Union Station handled approximately 3,000 passengers per day, making it a prospering hub of the industry."
Sadly there is only little evidence left of these days in Durand.
Next to the police station there is a locomotive ( GTW # 5632 ) and a GTW baggage car ( # 8812 ) on display, and an old signal box has also been allowed to remain.
You can support the Durand Union Station - Michigan Railroad History Museum by becoming a member of the "Durand Union Station Inc.". Download the 2013 application form.
One www.durandnow.com you can read more about the railroad in Durand in the RR POV ( Railroader Point of View ) section where there are many links, fotos, videos and comments.
Durandnow.com also has its own Youtube Channel - but there is not a lot of railroad videoes - mostly local news.
Copyright © Christian Vinaa
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