Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad

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Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad
Southshore freight.png
South Shore Line GP38-2s idle near the Michigan City shops
Reporting mark CSS
Locale Chicago to South Bend, IN
Dates of operation 1903–present
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Headquarters Michigan City, IN

The Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad (reporting mark CSS), known to many as the South Shore Line, is a Class III[1] freight railroad operating between Chicago, Illinois, and South Bend, Indiana. The railroad serves as a link between Class I railroads and local industries in northeast Illinois and northwest Indiana.


A former Chicago South Shore and South Bend freight locomotive

The South Shore Line was created in 1903. Freight and passenger service on the South Shore Line were operated as the Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad (CSS&SB) under several owners until the line went bankrupt in 1989. Dispatching and the main line was taken over at that time by the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD) for continued operation of passenger service. The line's freight service and non-passenger track was picked up in 1990 by the new Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad, owned by Anacostia and Pacific.[2] The Kensington and Eastern Railroad (the piece of the railroad in Illinois) was acquired from the Illinois Central Railroad in 1996.

The CSS&SB operates diesel locomotives on the whole line. It also operates the former Indianapolis, La Porte and Michigan City Railroad and Chicago, Cincinnati and Louisville Railroad, once part of the New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate) system, from Michigan City southeast to Dillon (southeast of Stillwell), bought from Norfolk Southern in 2001. Via trackage rights it connects to many other railroads in the Chicago area, with connections to the Port of Chicago, Proviso Yard and Joliet.

The CSS&SB's primary businesses are coal and steel, the coal delivered to the Michigan City and Burns Harbor generating stations owned by Northern Indiana Public Service Company. The CSS&SB also serves many online customers along the line.

See also[edit]

  • South Shore Line – the commuter rail line running over much of the same trackage.


External links[edit]