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Can I own my own train and have tracks on my land?

So let me build you a scenario...

A very well-off individual has plenty of money, (30,000,000+) wants to own a steam locomotive. He finds one to buy and buys it. He builds a garage on his own property, but, how will he get it there? Does Amtrak allow for private connections to the grid?

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  • Jon
    Lv 7
    2 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is certainly possible for an individual with the necessary funds to build their own private railway line and operate a train on it. If they do not use the line for any business purpose or carry any fare-paying passengers they do not need much by way of operating certificates, insurance, etc.

    Because full-size railways are very expensive, most private railways are narrow-gauge or miniature, but there are a few standard gauge ones around. E.g. In the UK multi-millionaire businessman and rail enthusiast Sir William McAlpine had the Fawley Hill Railway built in the grounds of his mansion: http://fawleyhill.co.uk/about-fawley-hill/

    Connecting a amateur-run private railway to a working railway network is much more complex as it raises a number of safety issues. It is sometimes done by semi-professional heritage rail operations who have the funds and engineering expertise (and often have retired senior railway executives on their boards, who smooth the process using their old contacts) but is very rare with amateur lines.

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  • 2 years ago

    Amtrak doesn't control the grid, except for a small part in the Boston-Washington corridor. Most of the grid is opened by freight railroads.

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  • Poppy
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    Amtrak does not own any tracks, lol! But it could be arranged by the owners of the tracks to motivate the engine on them to private property if owner built a spur to their land ( very expensive). Not sure you have enough funds for that. Trucking it in and craning it onto a couple of rails on property would be a lot less money, but still expensive.

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  • 2 years ago

    Hi he can certainly own his own set of rails. however connection would be a whole different game this might be possible if he has enough money and lawyers to get the train company to agree.

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  • Anonymous
    2 years ago

    You will need more than 30M to get a steam locomotive and railroad track on your land.

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  • JetDoc
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    First off... AMTRAK does not own "the grid". In fact THEY don't own ANY tracks at all. The railroad company that DOES own the tracks where the private owner wants to build a siding would have to approve the construction, and probably get paid for the use of their rails.

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  • 2 years ago

    You pay em and you are on the rails schedule.

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  • Anonymous
    2 years ago

    a better option would be to have a "mini" railroad

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OWFnzRWDJhk

    Youtube thumbnail

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  • 2 years ago

    A number of people, communities, institutions and companies own engines and cars on their private property . . . . obviously, it takes a lot of space and infrastructure to keep everything in operating condition - but there's no law (except local zoning) against owning such equipment.

    Most heavy industrial sites have their own sidings/spurs to transport materials in and out of their property and operate their own locomotives on their property. I'm sure you can't operate your own locomotives on AMTRAK lines = everything would need to meet safety/insurance/liability standards = but a number of individuals and companies still own private cars (passenger and freight) which are "tagged onto" regular trains.

    Obtaining the rolling stock would probably be the least expensive part of your proposition.

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  • 2 years ago

    You could probably do this if you had enough money but chances are it'd just be cheaper to find another way to transport the steam engine onto your private track - even if that means having to hire a crew to build the steam engine on-site.

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