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Union Pacific in Utah, East of Ogden

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UP mainline, Echo/Weber Canyons to Ogden

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UP Grass Creek Branch

(Read more about UP's Grass Creek Branch, located just north of Coalville in Summit County)

UP Ontario Branch

(Read the AFE accompanying letter for the need to build the Ontario Branch; PDF, 5 pages; 2MB)

August 23, 1926
Union Pacific received approval from the federal Interstate Commerce Commission to operate its Ontario Industrial Spur in interstate commerce, and to establish Keetley as an agency station.

The following comes from the ICC published reports, Volume 111, pages 684-686 (111 ICC 684):

Finance Docket No. 5644

Operation Of Line By Union Pacific R. R Co.
Submitted August 16, 1926. Decided August 23, 1926.

The Union Pacific Railroad Company, a carrier by railroad subject to the interstate commerce act, on July 8, 1926, filed an application under paragraph (18) of section 1 of the act for a certificate that the present and future public convenience and necessity require the operation, as a branch line of railroad, of its Ontario industrial spur extending from a point known as Keetley Junction on its existing Park City branch line in the northeast quarter of section 2, township 2 south, range 4 east of the Salt Lake meridian in Summit County, to a point known as Keetley in the northeast quarter of section 24, same township and range in Wasatch County, a distance of approximately 5.37 miles, all in the State of Utah.

The spur was built in 1923 for the purpose of serving the Park Utah mine through the so-called Ontario Drainage Tunnel, which was then in existence. This tunnel has since been electrified so as to carry the ore from mines in that locality eastward to the southern end of the spur. At present the upper levels of the mines are served by applicant and the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad at Park City, which is slightly over 9 miles northwest of Keetley. Stockyards have been constructed at Keetley, and the applicant represents that the present and prospective traffic at that point requires the immediate establishment of an agency station.

The applicant does not expect that the proposed operation will be profitable in itself, as the rates which now apply to and from Park City will apply to Keetley. It is of the opinion, however, that the effect of such operation on its system revenues will justify the action proposed. It is estimated that shipments of ore destined to Salt Lake Valley smelters, 69.57 miles distant, will increase from 70,443 tons during the first year of operation to 189,609 tons during the fifth year, that outbound shipments of sheep and cattle will increase from 50 cars during the third year to 150 cars during the fifth year, and that inbound traffic will increase from 67 cars during the first year to 121 cars during the fifth year.

It is stated that previous to the construction of this spur the tonnage from the Park Utah mines was about 50,000 tons annually, and that tonnage over that amount included in the applicant's estimates represents business developed and created by the operation of the new line. The applicant handles at Park City about 70 per cent of the ore developed in the upper levels of the Park Utah mines. It states that approximately 50 per cent of the anticipated livestock traffic over the spur and about 10,000 tons of ore annually will represent tonnage diverted from existing lines.

It appears that the operation of the spur in question as a branch line will be of material aid in the development of the mining industry and furnish more accessible railroad facilities for livestock shippers in the vicinity.

Upon the facts presented, we find that the present and future public convenience and necessity require the operation of the Ontario industrial spur, described in the application, as a branch line of railroad. An appropriate certificate will be issued.

Certificate Of Public Convenience And Necessity

Issued August 23, 1926

Investigation of the matters and things involved in this proceeding having been had, and said division having, on the date hereof, made and filed a report containing its findings of fact and conclusions thereon, which said report is hereby referred to and made a part hereof:

It is hereby certified, That the present and future public convenience and necessity require the operation by the Union Pacific Railroad Company of the Ontario industrial spur, in Summit and Wasatch Counties, Utah, described in the application and report aforesaid, as a branch line of railroad.

It is ordered, That the Union Pacific Railroad Company, when filing schedules establishing rates and fares applicable on said line of railroad, shall in such schedules refer to this certificate by title, date, and docket number.


Compiled from handwritten notes, dating from 1978-1988.

Most of this information was transcribed from handwritten notes taken while doing research in the files of UP's engineering department during 1982-1983, then compiled as a computer file in 1988, with additions through September 1994.

The notes from the early 1980s were completed prior to the closure of UP's engineering office in Salt Lake City in about 1984. All files and most personnel were moved to Omaha in 1983-1984. The office was located in the Utah Division offices in the former depot annex building, just south of Union Pacific's Salt Lake City depot. The building was demolished in 1999 to make room for The Gateway Project.