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Short-line railroads may not have the heavy schedules of the larger carriers, but most have enough business to be kept quite busy. A casual examination of the types of businesses serviced by the Maryland Midland Railway for example reveals the following types of customers:

Animal & Poultry Feed Distributor Manufacturer
Floor Covering Manufacturer Lumber & Building Materials
Distributor Food Distributor
Fertilizer/Grain Distributor Aggregate Producer
Cement Manufacturer Lightweight Aggregate Producer
Relief Agency/Used Clothing Printing Company
Home Builder Lumber & Building Material

It is also possible for short-line railroads to own their own facilities such as the bulk-transfer facility owned and operated by the The Stockton Terminal & Eastern Railroad. These facilities help extend the short-line railroads services to off-track customers. In the same vein, many also still have team tracks to serve the same purpose. For the model railroader with limited space, these types of facilities offer opportunities to run a wider variety of cars.

Bulk Transfer facility
Updated: 06-28-2001
 Sean Lim 2001