CHENANGO COUNTY – Although the train tracks spanning Chenango County have been inoperable since 2006, recent flooding in the region has born reports of further damage to the railroad, leaving local residents wondering what will become of the line now.
Further damage to the tracks has recently been reported in the areas of North Norwich, Sherburne and Earlville. Photos of washed out banks that once supported the railroad circulated on online social media sites in the wake of this month’s flooding, one of them showing a large section of tracks left suspended in the air in Earlville after floodwaters washed out the ground beneath it.
The latest damage has caused some concern over the county’s recent effort to revitalize the tracks. However, according to local officials, the $5.9 million rail revitalization project will move forward, despite unanticipated damage not included in the original proposal.
“As we have seen in the past few weeks, things happen that we do not plan on,” said Steve Craig, president of Commerce Chenango. However, the Chenango County Industrial Development Agency (CCIDA), a subsidiary of Commerce Chenango, has not put the brakes on the project, he said. “We’re optimistic that because this additional damage occurred in Chenango County, we can reconfigure the project and fund some of the repairs with other awards.”