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6/01/2016

The Toronto Railway Museum (TRM) Operating Hours

The Toronto Railway Museum (TRM) is open 5 days per week (Wednesday through Sunday)  from 12:00 p.m. (noon) to 5:00 p.m. Admission to our museum exhibits is $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children. Click here for more information.
 
We want to thank the thousands of visitors who visit our museum, enjoy the miniature railway and donate to the Toronto Railway Museum. Your support made it possible for us to continue to celebrate and interpret Toronto's fascinating railway history. Our hard-working volunteers continue to be busy restoring our equipment and preparing new displays. If you wish to join us in this endeavour, please contact us. We are always looking for new volunteers, no matter what your skill level. A desire to contribute is all that is required.

5/27/2016

This weekend - Our annual Train Show & Doors Open Toronto event!

Join us this weekend for our annual two day Toronto Railway Museum's Train Show as we participate in the Doors Open Toronto program. Over 130 buildings across Toronto will be open for you to visit as well.  Everything is open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. each day.

Click here to find out all about this great weekend event.

Posting by Russ Milland 

5/24/2016

First Open House of the Toronto Model Railroad Club in their new location!


We have reported many times before on The Model Railroad Club of Toronto. Our last report was on their last Open House before they were forced to move from their home in Liberty Village.  They subsequently found a great new space in the basement of a modern building in the east end of Toronto and have incorporated many components of their old miniature railway into a new dramatic redesign of their system. Above you will find an announcement of their first Open House at their new location this coming weekend.

For a closer look at the above announcement, visit www.modelrailroadclub.com

Posting by Russ Milland

5/17/2016

Visit to the Niagara Railway Museum

As announced here earlier, the Niagara Railway Museum in Fort Erie held the first of three planned 2 day Open Houses last weekend.  We visited them and captured the images below to share with you.  Like our museum, this museum is being developed by a small group of enthusiastic and dedicated volunteers and the annual progress is impressive.

Posting and photos by Russ Milland

Click on each image for a closer look!

Former Diesel Maintenance Shop
  
Newly acquired GE 50 Ton Diesel
Newly acquired F7 Cab

One of 3 Box Cars
Exhibits in Box Cars
One of several model bridges
Model Railway donated by Niagara Central Hobbies
Steam locomotive




4/27/2016

Minister of Transport Marc Garneau visits the museum



Federal Minister of Transport (and passenger train enthusiast) Marc Garneau visited the Toronto Railway Museum on Wednesday, April 27, to mark Rail Safety Week 2016.

Minister Garneau was at the museum to announce $10.9 million in new federal funding to upgrade over 400 railway level crossings across Canada. He also took the opportunity to tour the museum and see some of our collection of historical railway equipment and artifacts.

The minister was accompanied by Adam Vaughan, Member of Parliament for the local Spadina-Fort York riding; Julie Dabrusin, MP for Toronto-Danforth and Kate Young, MP for London West. Also present for the announcement were Mike Regimbal, National Director of Operation Lifesaver, and Michael Bourque, president of the Railway Association of Canada.

The 2016 edition of Rail Safety Week runs from April 25 to May 1. Throughout the week government and rail industry representatives are promoting increased awareness of safety around railway operations, and how government and industry are working together to make Canada's rail system safer for all Canadians.

This includes programs like Operation Lifesaver, which provides outreach and education about the hazards around railway property and trains. Through these activities, Operation Lifesaver aims to prevent collisions between trains and motor vehicles, as well as deaths and injuries due to trespassing.

Click on each image for a closer look!









4/22/2016

Canadian Council for Railway Heritage Votes to Integrate with ATRRM



The TRHA is a member of the ATRRM (see http://www.atrrm.org/) and a member of the CCRH (see http://www.railwayheritagecanada.ca/ ).  We supported this initiative which is described below.  The CCRH has struggled over the years to operate as those involved typically had significant workloads to keep their own railway museums going.  Don Evans, who is quoted below, was the President (now retired from that position) of the incredibly successful West Coast Railway Association ( see http://wcra.org/ ) who have a wonderful railway museum in Squamish, B.C. which should be on every railfan's bucket list.  I spent a whole day with Don Evans at their museum and he shared an enormous "smorgasborg" of insights into Railway Museum development. I offered to take him for lunch but he refused as he had arranged for a catered lunch in their magnificent restored business car, the British Columbia, served up by their General Manager.

Here is the news release from the ATTRM which explains all:  

"The institutional members of the Canadian Council for Railway Heritage (CCRH) have voted to integrate into the Association of Tourist Railroads and Railway Museums (ATRRM). This move will serve to both strengthen resources in support of railway heritage in Canada, as well as to consolidate ATRRM’s role in serving Tourist Railroads and Railway Museums more effectively on a North America wide basis.

“90% of support activities undertaken by ATRRM are universal to both American and Canadian operations”, says Don Evans – Chair of CCRH and a Director of ATRRM. “This move will add greatly to the resources available to the Canadian members in the heritage railways and museums industry. At the same time, it creates a much stronger body to work with Canadian museums groups and Canadian railway regulators, activities that ATRRM has done very successfully in the U.S.”

Mark Ray, President of ATRRM says, “The Association welcomes the decision by the Canadian Council for Railway Heritage to integrate with ATTRM as this strengthens our bond with our Canadian members. Canada is rich in railway history, and is home to many of the best railway museums in North America. While ATRRM’s membership has included a number of Canadian members, this action by the CCRH and the formation of the Council within ATRRM will give greater voice to the Canadian members and truly make ATRRM a North American organization dedicated to railway preservation.”

Under the new arrangement, a new ATRRM Committee will be formed called the Canadian Council for Railway Heritage – retaining the same name. The committee will be active in museums and regulatory advocacy on behalf of all of ATRRM’s Canadian members."

Posting by Russ Milland

4/17/2016

Our first miniature railway run day of the season!

I think this may have been our earliest ever miniature train run day "season opener" at the museum. The weather was sunny and +14C or so, a perfect spring day. The park was busy with a great many families pushing strollers. In addition to our regular staff, thanks to volunteers Greg, Wendy, Rodney, Derek and Zach for making the day happen. We ran full trains for much of the day using mini-Whit. We also had the Elwell-Parker electric baggage cart out doing demonstration runs.

Posting and Pictures by Michael Guy
Click on each image for a closer look!



3/31/2016

Maintenance of the right of way and other stories


With more hospitable weather and the impending operating season approaching for our miniature railway, it was time to begin to prepare the miniature railway track for the new season. 
In the images below, we see the first work train of the season in action. We worked to replaced the removable track sections and relaid a connecting track section which was disturbed by the NBA event  activities over the winter. Although there is more work to do, the circuit is complete and was quite usable for work train service, a promising sign.
Another image below shows an equipment plate currently nailed to a pillar in stall 31. In the latter days of the roundhouse stalls 31 and 32 were used as a battery-charging shop. We still have the large glass rectifier in the museum and the high-amperage electrical connectors are preserved in their original locations on the wall.
As announced earlier, Leon's Roundhouse store has now closed and the final two photos show store manager Gigi doing some last cleanup and "the red arm chair" in the resulting space. The red armchair was made locally famous by photographer Norm Betts in our early years. During the roundhouse renovations Norm shot the chair in various locations amid the construction. I thought this image (although not to Norm's quality) made a good bookend to the saga.

Posting and images by Michael Guy

Click on each image for a closer look!








3/24/2016

Roundhouse Park acquires a triple expansion steam engine!

 


For many years, a triple expansion steam engine was on display outside the old Marine Museum at Exhibition Place (the CNE). Click here for more information from a newsletter from that era about the engine. It is a triple-expansion marine steam engine from the Niagara II suction dredge which operated on the Niagara River. Before that it had been the "Rideaulite" and later the "Imperial Lachine". Click here for information and photos of it in these roles. 
With major development of a new hotel complex at the CNE, the triple expansion engine needed a new home.  The TRHA agreed that moving it to Roundhouse Park would provide another worthy attraction associated with our museum. Aside for the the need for some new sod around the enclosure, the move is complete. 

We have started to clean up and repaint the engine. In the images below we are repainting the main columns supporting the steam cylinders (the big green lump at the top) and working to free up a stuck entry door. We have also started to de-rust one of the secondary support columns.

Much of what shows as rusty in the images was once polished steel with an oil finish. Some of it is brass, some of it is bronze. The corrosion and "guck" will be cleaned off to restore the bright parts to their proper look and the whole engine will again show in its former glory.
At the Marine Museum the engine was motorized to revolve slowly to show the motion. At present the mechanism is stuck and will not turn but we have plans to carefully free things up so it will turn once again.
Posting and pictures by Michael Guy

Click on each image for a closer look!




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