Once a Road, now a Bike Path

In Madison, Wisconsin (before 2006), there used to be a road called Thornton Avenue. It had 2 railroad crossings. One used Gates and Flashers. The other used Wig-Wags. Both crossings were used by the Wisconsin and Southern Railroad.

Unfortunately, I could not find any pictures of the Thornton Avenue #1 Gates and Flashers anywhere on the internet. So I just have some pictures of the crossing #2 Wig-Wags down below.

MadsionWig-Wags

MadisonSingle

Down below is a photo of the Wig-Wags in action.

Thornton Avenue in Action

But then, in the summer of 2006, for reasons unknown, the road was narrowed, and was renamed as Yahara Parkway. The photo down below shows some photos of the new Yahara #2 crossing. The first 2 photos are showing the main path views of the crossing. The next 2 show the track views. The last one shows the relay case for the Wig-Wags.

MadisonView

MadisonSignals

TackViewNorth

TrackViewSouth

RelayCase

Strangely, the Relay Case still reads South Thornton Avenue, and the rails on the crossing are still as wide as they were when the line was Thornton Avenue.

These pictures were taken in very late 2006 (December 29 to be exact), when the Yahara Parkway just opened. Unfortunately, the new crossing #1 pictures were unavailable at the time, because they were still upgrading it. Down below of the pictures of it taken on August 8, 2009.

Yahara1View

Yahara1Signs

ThrackView1South

TrackView1North

The bridge shows that he line used to be double-tracked.

Yes, the Gates and Flashers were torn out, and replaced with crossbucks and tiny stop signs on wooden posts. The Gates and Flashers’s Relay Cases and Concrete Pads are also gone. Unlike crossing #2, the rails through the crossing are now the same width as the path.

Okay, now I’ll go back to the Wig-Wags since that’s what we like more. Down below is another photo of the Wig-Wags in action, this time as Yahara Parkway.

WigWigsinMadison

However, in the spring of 2010 (I think the month was April but I’m not sure), the railroad made a further upgrade to the Yahara #2 crossing….

NewYaharaParkwaySigns

Yes, both Wig-Wags were torn out, and replaced with crossbucks and yield signs on wooden posts. The railroad gave this crossing more adequate pathway crossing signs. Nothing signal-related remains on this pathway anymore, although the Relay Cases and Concrete Pads are still here.

In 2011, the stop signs on the crossing #1 were removed, but shortly afterward they are put back on. Down below is a photo of the train crossing through them in 2015.

TrainAtYahara1

Notice little “Progress” words have been written on the stop signs (maybe that’s way they were taken off).

Perhaps when I grow up, I could make a few changes to this pathway and even a few of the stuff around it (It’s too much to explain for right now, but when they’re made, you’ll see what I mean). Well, I should probably join the City of Madison before I can do that.

Well, that’s the end of this post. My next one will be in 2 weekends from now. Stay tuned!

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