Letter: Rail history killed by trail to nowhere

Editor,

The awarding of the use of the Nickel Plate tracks to Arcadia Arts & Heritage Depot and Atlanta Pacific Railroad LLC as the rail’s new operator as reported in local media is a travesty of the public trust in the use of the historic railroad and its legacy. Our examination of the competing proposals suggests that an excursion line only from Arcadia to Tipton, based on our studies and past experience, isn’t financially feasible.

Once again, the cities of Fishers and Noblesville have persisted in their plans to not consider alternatives to the proposed route or listen to the public outcry against this trail to nowhere. We are disappointed, but not surprised.

For more than two years, they have tried to discredit and seek ways to destroy the Indiana Transportation Museum’s educational, cultural and economic benefit to these communities and rob our citizens of the opportunity to experience rail history.

Their dealings behind closed doors are why they chose an operator that serves their own interests. We are not surprised they chose this approach. We believe the northern operation not only destroys the Nickel Plate Line, but wastes the potential of the line by cutting out the heart of this community asset. The people of Fishers and Noblesville are forfeiting the future opportunity to ride trains from their own communities to attractions in Indianapolis and other central Indiana cities.

We continue to believe this is not what our communities want, and the museum will continue to fight while seeking to meet the needs of all by considering alternatives that do not wipe out our past.

John McNichols

Chair of the Board of the Indiana Transportation Museum

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