THE MAIN STREET UNDERPASS

100_1893

100_1894

MAIN STREET INTERSECTION BEFORE THE UNDERPASS. THIS AND ALL PHOTOS IN THIS POST TAKEN BY NEAL RANAURO. THEY WILL ALL ENLARGE IF YOU CLICK ON THEM.

The intersection of the railroad and Main Street near Brooks Blvd must have been a nightmare in the 1940’s. With business booming over at Johns Manville and an increasing number of automobiles in town the lines must’ve been backing up for a half a mile to cross town. At the time the railroad industry was still a preffered means of shipping goods with Johns Manville being no exception, boasting 9 frieght line bays for loading cargo. If you go over to the My Manville page and look at the areal photo they have posted you’ll see what I mean. Nine freight launches plus 4 regular frieght line tracks including Passenger service probably produced a train every few minutes. So Manville did what any logical town would do… they built an underpass. This must’ve been an enginieering nightmare since you can’t just close down part of the railroad network for a few weeks so you can build a bridge. What they could do was build the underpass next to the tracks, and then just move them over, which is what they did. Eventually the old site of the tracks became a driveway pulling up to the new train station. Here is seemlingly ground being broken on the project.

100_1885Im not sure how long the bridge took to build, but this next photo appeared in the Manville News in 1949

Here are some more photos of the construction process100_1906 100_1907 dsc04027-1 dsc04031

By the time the bridge was said and done the old train station sat on a hill in the corner of the Chester House parking lot, and Manville was fitted with a new, modern brick station, which stayed there until the 70’s when passenger service through manville was shut down.

dsc04019100_1888

The opening of the bridge was a major town even complete with a ribbon cutting ceremony.  Here are some photos of the celebration… you can see here that it was a pretty big deal in town… if you didn’t think traffic was an age old problem, well these photos show differently.

dsc04022

dsc04025

dsc04023

dsc04024

100_1912

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “THE MAIN STREET UNDERPASS

  1. Wow – that’s some great stuff. My sister sent me a link to this and I’m glad she did!
    I spent some time at the Manville Library looking through photos and included a few of them on my family tree website. If you take a look at http://www.CarmonSandusky.com and click on the bottom left “Other Pictures” button, you will find them.
    Particularly, I am interested in finding photos of Camplain Road School. I went there from 1970-1975, and then it was torn down. I have always wanted to see images of the school again, inside and out.
    I don’t live in Manville any more. I am 2 hours away in PA, but I do plan on visiting the library again to look through more pictures.
    If I ever get the time, I would love to expand on my family tree website and add more Manville images from the past.
    Gary

  2. The man with the shovel near the train tracks and in a later photo holding scissors at the bridge opening ceremony looks like Alexander Batcho, former mayor of Manville and long time Board of Education member. He worked at Johns Manville Research. Manville middle school was named in his honor.

  3. Pingback: Manville News, December 12, 1941 | Manville, NJ … Revolution on the Millstone

  4. Pingback: I’m fixing stuff again | Manville, NJ … Revolution on the Millstone

  5. I never thought of the underpass as attractive but seeing these pictures really brings out the design. I guess part of it is covered today with extra protection from tall trucks. Not only is the design of the underpass walkways apparent in these construction and grand opening pictures but also the color, which really pops out, compared to the very dark color that it has become over the years. I wonder if anyone wold consider a public project to power wash the concrete to possibly restore the concrete back to or close to the original color?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s