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Philly NRHS - Railfan Pictures of the Week


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The Philadelphia Chapter of the

National Railway Historical Society

Established in 1936


Railfan Pictures of the Week - 06/20/2004

Amtrak Northeast Corridor June 20 2004
Sometimes non-railroad related sources can provide new perspectives to railfans. The Zoo Balloon is one of those sources. Installed last year at the Philadelphia Zoo, it soars to a height of 400 feet, giving a spectacular view of the Schuykill River, center city and, of course, Zoo Interlocking and its environs.
Ground level at Zoo as an eastbound heads toward New York City. Zoological Street, once a public street, is now a parking lot for zoo patrons, but access is still available on foot.
As the balloon starts to climb, Zoo Tower and what appears to be an Amtrak intermodal yard come into view just to the west of the Zoo.
At its apex, the balloon affords fantastic views, such as Fairmount Park, the Girard Avenue Bridge (which may someday see the Route 15 trolley return) and the stone arch of the NEC.
To the west, a lone Amtrak engines reverses toward 30th Street Station. The Amtrak Harrisburg Line is in the background, the High Line freight connection in the middle bracketed by the NEC.
Looking south, a view of the NEC, 30th Street and the High Line.
Of course, what would the zoo be without the elephants, who live in the shadow of the NEC?
Not sure if this is a secret project from Amtrak or SEPTA, but it looks like another valiant effort to put wheels on anything to see what this baby can do! .......... Sorry, couldn't resist.


All pictures June 20 2004 c. 2004 John P. Almeida
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Website created June 12, 2002

Last Updated June 20, 2004