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Not surprised, I don’t see any class 1 like NS or CP buying the entire railroad.  I would expect NS to take full control of the Fitchburg line now Pan Am Southern west of Ayer Ma.  The rest East of Ayer, New Hampshire and Maine, I’d bet would be broken up, purchased by many short lines.  Maybe CP now that they run in Maine now.  Who knows

With the ex-CP main across Maine  CP just bought, things could get interesting.  If CP or a third part builds a container transfer facility at the place CP meets the Atlantic Ocean, it would have a way to move containers bypassing rail choke points father south.  And a quick turn arround to New England and the Big Apple.

Another possibility Pam Am is owned by several railroads, but kept in one whole, like little CR is today. Or the right of way could be sold in one piece, and it would be run as a "toll road".  A private version of open access?

If - and that’s a pretty big if - someone buys Pan Am; I have to agree with Jon that G&W makes sense.  He notes their ownership of New England Central but, they also own Providence & Worcester and St. Lawrence & Quebec in the New England region.  And G&W’s owners appear to have the deep pockets necessary to pull off a Pan Am purchase.

My one nagging doubt about Pan Am’s value is the pulp and paper mills they serve.  This industry is slowly dying in North America and currently represents a fair chunk of Pan Am’s business.  If that goes away, I don’t know what would be waiting in the wings to replace it.

Curt

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