IAIS Subdivision 1

Iowa Interstate's First Subdivision stretches the 221 miles between Blue Island, IL, to the yards in Iowa City, IA. Along the way, it runs on trackage rights over Metra trackage for the first 25 miles between Blue Island and Joliet, and then over CSX territory for the next 75 miles into Bureau, IL. From Bureau to the west, IAIS is on home rails. The entire First Sub is the very root from which the entire Chicago, Rock Island, & Pacific system grew, and was some of the earliest railroad built in Illinois and Iowa. The route stayed core to the road until its bankruptcy and dismemberment in mid-1980, and by 1984 was part of the Iowa Interstate's main line. For more on the building and history of this line, see the First Sub History page.

The First Sub Today

Today's First Sub is the hub of much of Iowa Interstate's daylight activity. In addition to hosting both main trains - CBBI and BICB - during daylight hours, the line also has three major yards, one of IAIS's two engine service facilities, connects to the Second Sub at Bureau and the Milan Branch at Rock Island, interchanges with the IC&E at Davenport, and hosts several locals and other trains such as unit coal and grain trains off the Second Sub and locals between Rock Island and Iowa City. (For more detailed information, please see the Operations page.)

First Sub operations are a bit difficult to describe, but once you understand them, they run regular as clockwork. BICB departs Blue Island in the late hours of the night, and meets its counterpart from the previous day (CBBI) somewhere east of Rock Island. That CBBI departed Iowa City in the mid-evening hours the previous day. Exactly where the meet occurs depends on how early or late the trains are running. By sunrise, CBBI is well on its way into the Chicagoland area, and BICB is usually working the RI yard, or just arriving. Sometimes as early as 0700h and as late as 1100h, BICB completes its work and heads west into Iowa City, arriving in late morning or around noon, typically taking about 2-2.5 hours to traverse the distance.

Meanwhile, between CBBI's departure from Iowa City the previous day and BICB's departure from Rock Island back towards Iowa City, a turn runs from IC out to RI and back, known appropriately enough as ICRI/RIIC. This train essentially picks up cars destined for either customers west of Davenport or headed up to the interchange at Cedar Rapids. Sorting is done at Rock Island, since the IC yard is very poorly suited to train-building due to the numerous grade crossings surrounding it. The ICRI/RIIC are intended to shuttle these blocks of cars from the sort location (RI) back and forth from Iowa City. In addition, they also stop to switch customers, such as Cenpeco in Walcott and North Star Steel in Wilton, along the way. Any cars making it to Iowa City on a returning RIIC are typically then just forwarded onto the day's ICCR/CRIC trains, and likewise much of the CRIC freight is forwarded onto the night's ICCR. It's a relay race between these pairs of trains.

The Milan branch shoots out to the southwest of Rock Island. Where the mainline turns to cross the Government Bridge at the west end of the Rock Island yard, BNSF and IAIS share trackage out to the point where BNSF diverges to cross the Crescent Bridge (just south/west of the Centennial Bridge). From this divergence point, IAIS continues out to the end of track in Milan. There are a number of customers on this line, and it's serviced by the 5 day/week Rock Island Switcher (RISW). For more on the Milan Branch, see the Milan Branch page.

Prior to 4-Feb-2006, CSXT controlled the trackage between Joliet and Bureau, and then down to Henry, IL, on the Second Subdivision, as their New Rock Subdivision. On that date, a lease went into effect that gave IAIS control of everything west of Utica and down to Henry, restricting CSXT to Joliet-Utica.

Maximum Speed: 40 MPH on IAIS track Length: 221.1 miles
CTC from MP 15.7 to 39.9, Track Warrant Control elsewhere
Radio: IAIS - 161.220 MHz and 160.305 MHz from MP115.7 to MP 236.8
CSXT - 160.320 MHz and 160.290 MHz from MP 40.2 to MP 115.7
Metra - 161.340 MHz from MP 15.7 to MP 40.2
Station Sidings Other
15.7  Blue Island, IL Yes
IAIS trackage rights over Metra
18.4  Midlothian IAIS trackage rights over Metra
20.4  Oak Forest IAIS trackage rights over Metra
23.5  Tinley Park IAIS trackage rights over Metra
27.2  Hickory Creek IAIS trackage rights over Metra
29.6  Mokena IAIS trackage rights over Metra
34.0  New Lenox IAIS trackage rights over Metra
38.9  EJ&E Crossing Metra territory, EJ&E Crossing
40.1  UD Tower Metra territory, BNSF Crossing
40.2  Joliet East of Joliet is METRA track, west is CSXT
43.5  Rockdale IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
51.1  Minooka IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
60.5  Morris IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
63.4  Stockdale IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
72.2  Seneca IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
77.0  Marseilles IAIS trackage rights over CSXT
84.5  Ottawa BNSF Crossing at 84.9
94.3  Utica East of Utica is CSXT track, west is IAIS
99.2  La Salle
99.8  Peru BNSF Crossing at 101.0
103.0  Spring Valley
109.6  DePue
115.7  Bureau 5290 YesJunction with Subdivision 2
122.4  Tiskilwa Yes
136.5  Sheffield 2720 Yes
145.6  Annawan
151.5  Atkinson 5430 Yes
159.1  Geneseo Yes
169.7  Colona BNSF Crossing
173.7  Silvis 5930 Yes
178.9  Moline 6680 Joint track with BNSF to Rock Island
181.3  Rock Island, IL 2810 YesBNSF & CP/IC&E Interchange
182.0  Mississippi River 3150
183.2  Davenport, IA CP/IC&E Interchange
186.2  Farnam Yes
186.3  Brammer
194.2  Walcott 6520 YesPhotos
199.2  Stockton
202.0  Durant Yes
203.2  Twin States 5360
207.6  Wilton Yes
210.0  North Star 14490 Yes
211.5  Moscow Photos
215.9  Atalissa Yes
221.3  West Liberty 4200 Photos
226.3  Downey Yes
236.8  Iowa City, IA 10000 YesPhotos

Timetable Legend:

    = Station        = Points of Interest        = Abandoned        = Trackage Rights   
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  Last modified on December 04, 2010, at 10:19 PM
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