Layout Room

Here is the layout room.  It is approximately 48 feet by 27 feet.  The largest area is approximately 14 feet by 48 feet.  The extension is an additional 13 by 13 feet.  As you can see I have access to all of the basement area so that I can have a connecting track for continuous running.  This continuous running feature is handy for layout tours or times that I just want to have a train running around the layout, track cleaning or breaking in new locomotives.  The layout is built to be a point to point layout with staging yards for each end of the layout.  The staging yard is located underneath the peninsula in the middle of the room and it is large enough to hold more than 12 trains for an operating session.

The Layout Room


Layout room
  1. My layout room is an “L” shaped area. The long part of the L is approximately 14 feet by 48 feet.  The foot of the “L” is an additional 13 feet by 13 feet.
  2. I also have access to other areas of the basement for connecting track or return loops.
  3. One section of the wall on the “L” has a stairway door, utility room door, and a fireplace which are all in a line which does not break up the area but does mean that I can not use that section of the room for an along the wall trackage.  This area is in the “inside” area of the “L”.

Givens:Railroad, Scale HO

  1. The railroad to be modeled is a section of the modern Santa Fe railroad.
  2. The railroad is set in the current era, in the year of the Santa Fe/BNSF merger to use the most current equipment but keep an emphasis on Santa Fe locomotives and rolling stock.
  3. The railroad is designed to facilitate operation of intermodal trains.
  4. The railroad is also designed to manage operation of manifest trains and local traffic.
  5. The railroad is designed to represent point-to-point traffic, but has provisions for continuous running either with a hidden return track or a reversing loop.
  6. Layout is a single level layout.
  7. Minimum radius is 30”.


  1. Track is two track, with a “Main North” and “Main South.”
  2. There are crossovers appropriate for switching from right hand or left hand running.
  3. Areas to be represented are Joliet, Illinois to Streator Illinois.
  4. .I have “fudged” a little to provide additional live sidings at locations along the railroad that were in place 50 years ago but no longer exist today to provide some additional opportunities for operation activities.
  5. The dispatcher controls mainline switches.
    Local switches are controlled on the layout.

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