New trains to run through Milford starting Monday

    Alison Bosma
    The Milford Daily News
    January 27, 2021

    Grafton and Upton Railroad trains will begin running through Milford to Franklin starting next
    week.

    MILFORD — Grafton and Upton Railroad trains will begin running through Milford to Franklin
    starting next week.

    “I’m thrilled, to be honest with you, to see the tracks back alive,” Selectman Michael Walsh
    said. “It’s just a great thing. I’m with them 100%.”

    The railroad company will take over the former CSX line through town beginning Monday,
    with trains moving through about twice a week, railroad President Michael Milanoski said.

    More:Hopedale, railroad end fight over West Street land

    Trains will be going about 10 mph, he said, in an area that has not seen rail traffic recently,
    pulling “a handful or two” of rail cars. The company is moving plastic pellets and lumber,
    according to a letter to Milford selectmen.

    In speaking with Hopedale officials this week, Milanoski said the work is for Garelick Farms,
    and is part of the Franklin company’s expansion.

    “Reactivating the rail lines here in Milford, as well as neighboring communities, now you have
    trains going through people’s backyards where for many, many years, the people that lived
    there never expected it,” Selectman Thomas O’Loughlin said, “and now it’s there.”

    Though the company is not restricted to any particular hours, Milanoski said he expects
    trains to run during the day, and characterized the company as a “daytime railroad” in his
    letter to selectmen.

    The railroad has been open and working since the 1800s, Milanoski said in an email to the
    Daily News, but the last loads to Milford were a couple of years ago, when the glass bottle
    plant on National Street was operational.

    That building is now occupied by Amazon.

    “Although Amazon Prime has not reached out to GU,” Milanoski wrote in his letter to
    selectmen, using an abbreviation for his company, “GU would be willing to deliver a
    supplemental means of providing freight service to Amazon in an effort to reduce some of
    the tractor-trailers they anticipate bringing products into their new building over local roads in
    a more environmentally-friendly manner.”

    Milanoski said the railroad upgraded and rebuilt the rail bed from Hopedale to Milford last
    summer.

    “It’s amazing to see and hear the trains coming through town, and they’re going to be getting
    more and more visible,” Board of Selectmen Chairman William Kingkade said.

    There will be nine railroad crossings in Milford, according to the letter to selectmen.

    Depot Street will have two, by Pinz and the Depot Street Tavern, as will Howard Street, at
    Rte. 140 and Mellen Street. The rest are on Rte. 140, South Main Street, Vernon Street,
    South Cedar Street and Mellen Street.

    “I think it would be really nice if we had the opportunity to take a ride,” Walsh said this week.

    The railroad also provided selectmen with materials about track safety.

    Alison Bosma can be reached at 508-634-7582 or abosma@wickedlocal.com. Find her on
    Twitter at @AlisonBosma.

                                              
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