Wichita Yard!!!

Discussion in 'Operations' started by FRISCO4503, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. FRISCO4503

    FRISCO4503 FRISCO4503 Frisco.org Supporter

    I am wondering, if someone can tell me EXACTLY WHERE in Wichita was or is the old FRISCO yard? I know when I worked for the SK&O I was close to it many times, but never got the chance to go to it, nor could I, on my days off, find it in my car. I have always wanted to go take a look around, if it is still there, but alas, I could walk all over the city and Not know what I am lookin at. Call me Geographically Challenged if you will. I would just like to go take a gander at it provided I get the opportunity to make my way back up to Kansas one of these days.
  2. bob_wintle

    bob_wintle Member Frisco.org Supporter

    It was located on the North End of Wichita just to the west of I135. It is just north of 29th street, 29th stree runs east and west. Ohio street is just to the east of it. Ohio street runs north south. Google map Wichita, you can still see where the Diesel shop stood. You can clearly see the cement pad and where the inspection pit was.
    Hope this helps.
  3. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 20, 2011
  4. mark

    mark Member

    Will and Ethan,

    The Frisco's "new" yard in Wichita is west and north of the pointer in Ethan's post.

    The yard's south end starts at East 29th street and runs to the north to East 37th Street. The yard runs on a north to south axis. It is east of the Consolidated Flour Mills elevator near the south end. The yard had the main track on the west side and seven body tracks to the east. The yard marked the division between to Frisco's Wichita Sub (railroad east) and the Burton Sub (railroad west).

    The mechanical department facilities, including the diesel shop (now gone), were on the southeast corner of the yard. If you zoom in you can see the diesel shop foundation, several tracks with turnouts removed and with the yard body tracks to the north. Immediately northeast of the Diesel shop were two tracks for the RIP and wash tracks and a freight house track.

    Immediately west of the diesel shop, east of the main track, was the scale track. Just across the main track was the caboose track. This helped to keep all the mechanical facilities closely consolidated. At the far north end of the yard, also on the east side, was the TOFC ramp.

    The yards to the southeast of the pointer that Ethan referenced are the Rock Island (north of the elevator) and the Missouri Pacific (south of the elevator) yards. These yards lie on a northeast of southwest axis. The Frisco crossed both of these railroads at grade southwest of their yards between 21st Street (to the south) and 25th Street (to the north).

    Hope this helps.


    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 20, 2011
  5. SteveM

    SteveM Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Wouldn't it be great to have such aerial coverage in other eras? It's great to study the cars in the yards--gons with scrap, UP hoppers with coal for smaller customers. Are those wind turbines in the old RI yard? Some flats with one, some with two and idler cars between. Always amazed at what those of us away from the mainlines don't get to see.
    Was that the Santa Fe yard to the west, running from 25th to 32nd or so?
  6. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

  7. mark

    mark Member


    Yes. The main yard for the Santa Fe is west of The Frisco's Wichita Yard, immediately easy of North Broadway Street. It is bisected by East 29th Street.

    Wichita would make for interesting modeling with large elevators, a refinery (now gone), street running and a good deal of interchange. Frisco's industrial areas in town were broken down into 4 zones. The yard and at least 12 other industries were located in the northern part of the city in zone 3.

    Frisco in Wichita basically formed a "T" shape laid on its side, with the bottom of the vertical stem pointing east. The vertical stem of the Wichita sub came in from the east, through a wye, turned north and ended in the yard on the right top stem. From the wye south was Wichita Union Station and the southern connections with the Rock Island and Santa Fe Railroads.

    Zone 1 was an area mostly along North Washington Street north of Douglas Street (Zone 4), through the wye (Zone 2) to East 29th Street (Zone 3). Zone 2 extended east of the wye (Zone 1) to the 17th and Oliver Team Track. The team track sat just east of Oliver Street. Zone 3 extended north on the Burton Subdivision from East 29th Street (Zone 1) to the Wichita Heights Passing Siding (MP 510.7) industries at the North Broadway Avenue crossing, just north of East 53rd Street. Zone 4 extended mostly along South Mosley Street south of East Douglas Street (Zone 1) to the Santa Fe connection south of East Lincoln Street.

    Hope this helps.


    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 20, 2011
  8. Friscotony

    Friscotony Member

    At the time of the merger with BN, All Frisco interchange connections to other railroads were made in the north end. The Frisco on the south end used the tracks of the Rock to enter the Union Terminal tracks, ran past the Union Station and then ran down the Santa Fe for a short distance so that they could then switch the area south of Douglas Street. The line was cut at Douglas street when Union Station was built in 1912 or so. The new north yard was opened about 1954 and prior to that, there was a yard located south of Kellogg . The north yard did not ever have a turntable or roundhouse. If anyone seeks additional info, let me know and I will respond.

    Tony L.
  9. yardmaster

    yardmaster Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

    Steve -

    The "Historic Aerials" website sometimes has older aerial photos:


    It looks like portions of Wichita/Sedgewick County have aerials for both 1938 and 1950. However, there's then a 50-year gap until the next aerial photo that is available online.

    Best Regards,
  10. Rancho Bob

    Rancho Bob Member

    As long as we are on the subject of Wichita. I just bought the new book on the ORIENT. No, not a FRISCO line for sure, but guys, this is a wonderful book if you're pondering a book purchase these days.

  11. diesel shop

    diesel shop Member

    What's the name and who wrote it?
  12. Rancho Bob

    Rancho Bob Member

  13. slsf580

    slsf580 Member

    I put together a map with labels for the various railroad yards in North Wichita. Enjoy! WichitaKSGoogleEarth.jpg
  14. SteveM

    SteveM Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Thanks for clarifying the layout. Things may make a little more sense next time I get in that vicinity, plus I may have Frisco friends to show me around. Of course there's more (or was?) in Wichita.
    Which led me think....in the 90's I bought the Railfan's Guide to KC and St. Louis with maps and directions to railfan spots. Actually used them some to get out in the weeds of the metro areas. With the mergers, 9/11 road construction and other changes those are getting out of date. Maybe, if we were up on the software methods, folks could put together maps of Frisco Railfan Guides for various cities or subdivisions. Then by printing out some maps (or being on-line like some of our erstwhile folk) a Friscophile could have more luck finding things to railfan. Would those go in the Division folders or a separate folder with cross-references?
  15. pbender

    pbender Member Frisco.org Supporter

  16. Not much is left of the old 29th st yard anymore. Most trks have either been pulled up or placed out of service. Built in 1953, the yard offically closed in 7/98 after the BN yard was combined into the SF yard. After 31 yrs it now can be stated that the Frisco in Wichita has offically come to an end. During March the last Wichita trainman w/ Frisco senority retired. He had been working in the SF yard ever since the yards were combined. The last Frisco Wichita roster, which he was on, RB 82 now will be phased out.
  17. The first yd in Wichita to be built in the north end was Mopac 25th st yd in 1906. When Wichita Union Stn started to be built in 1912 both SF and RI were required to vacate their downtown yards. Rock did first in 1911 moving to its new terminal next to the Mopac yd. Up to the end in 1980 it was known as Cline yd--named after EW Cline who was the rr land agent who managed the effort in getting the rr to purchase the land site. SF was next in 1913 when its yd & roundhouse were opened on north Broadway. Since SF operated three yards in town for many yrs, each yd was named after the phyiscal location it was located--north yd, south yd & west yd. The SF roundhouse was taken down sometime in the 70's but the turntable remained in use until atleast 1989 until it was removed. The sharp looking two story yd office was built in 1964 replacing a boxcar on blocks which had been used as an office several yrs prior.
  18. El Freesco

    El Freesco Member

    The BNSF still uses the Sfe - Frisco interchange track and Frisco yard to service a storage warehouse North of I 235 . The warehouse sits on the west side of the Ellsworth branch.

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