The Rochester Model Railroad Club recreates the Lehigh Valley railroad in the 1960s, but the club’s HO layout is called the Seneca Valley Lines. The 70 year old club has moved seven times over the years, its current location the basement of the church has been home for 20 years. That’s a long time for a club. A 20 year project takes planning, so the layout is divided into five sections with a supervisor in charge of each. That way quality control is maintained and projects are ready to go on meeting. The club has a cohesive artistic vision for the railroad. The 50 members attribute this to a willingness to compromise.
Allen Keller is with Tom Mccolloch, the president of the Rochester Model Railroad Club, which is located in the basement of a 150-year-old church with some steam pipes banging and heating system around. It’s an old building but it’s a great place for a model railroad. The club models the Lehigh Valley railroad from Jersey City, New Jersey, to Buffalo, New York. The HO Lehigh Valley Line is 40 by 60 feet, and a 2500 square foot space. The minimum radius is 36 inches on open grid benchwork. The railroad is a freestanding island design, and all trains start and end in the massive staging yard. The tour starts at the eastern end of the line, Jersey City, New Jersey.
Watch more from Allen Keller’s Great Model Railroad series in our archives.