Westwood Train Layout 2.0 (November 2010) . It's been a year and a half in the making, but VERSION 2.0 is finally here! This heavily updated version of my most popular MOC (Westwood City 1.0) features three new buildings, tons of extra surface detail, and a bunch of new trees. To see how far this layout has come over the past year, compare this page to the 'Westwood City 1.0' one. . FOREWARD:
On January 9, 2009, I tore down my beloved 'Legoville Junction' train layout. Over the next six months, I slowly constructed benchwork and accumulated buildings for a new [far larger] layout. The resulting display, Westwood City, was completed on June 26, 2009. My MOC Pages profile is littered with pictures of this layout.
Over the next year, I began to add more surface detail to the layout. While things progressed nicely, I ultimately concluded that I needed to replace several buildings on the town's South Side. I also became dissatisfied with the unrealistic appearance of Westwood's trees. By August of 2010, I was ready to give Westwood a substantial overhaul.
On August 4th, 2010, I replaced the Westwood General Hospital and the Westwood Police Station (the two worst looking buildings on the layout, in my opinion) with three custom-built tract homes. On September 26, 2010, I replaced the layout's seven unrealistic trees with twenty-two high-realism ones. During this period, a large number of other details were also added.
The results of this overhaul can be found in the gallery below. It is my hope that you enjoy what you see. As always, you are encouraged to leave any compliments, criticisms, or other messages in the comments section below.
This picture gives a nice view of Westwood's southern half. Figuring prominently into the equation is the town's large train station. The station, while unstaffed, is served by Amtrak's 'Red Canyon Special' twice a day. Between fifteen and thirty people use it on a daily basis.
Additionally, Westwood City serves as a crew-change point for both the northbound and southbound 'Canyon' sections. This is because the next-closest 'Canyon' stop, Polystyrene Falls, is nearly one hundred and twenty miles away.
A blue car shuttles along State Highway 171. The highway (known as Upshaw Road within city limits) effectively serves as the town's 'Main Street'. Nearly all of Westwood's commercial services can be found on or near this road. Westwood City is of considerable importance to long-distance truckers, as it is the only town of appreciable size for seventy miles in either direction.
In this picture, customer purchases tickets at the Brixton Theater on a quiet afternoon. The theater, built in 1929, is one of the oldest buildings on the town. It does not currently have 3-D projection equipment, and does not plan to acquire any in the near future. The nearest 3-D cinema is located in Fort Legoredo, which is 178 miles to the east.
From above, even the massive Westwood City train station seems small. Indeed, the station is the town's second largest building (by surface area). Only the Westwood Roundhouse (not pictured on this page) is larger. Notably, both buildings were built prior to the Great Depression.
A BNSF intermodal consist approaches Plunkett Ave. on a Sunday morning. The Plunkett Avenue railroad crossing is notoriously dangerous for motorists, so BNSF (with government funding) plans to construct crossing gates there in 2011. Most of the town's other level crossings are expected to receive similar treatment between 2011 and 2016.
In this picture, a car travels southward on Upshaw Road. The town's government hopes to place a traffic light at the intersection in the next three years. However, money remains tight, so the project may have to be postponed indefinitely. The city's tax base, while fairly large, has remained flat over the past three years due to a nationwide recession.
A WCPD police car responds to a call on a Wednesday Afternoon. It is one of three patrol cars owned by the police department. Westwood City boasts of an outrageously low crime rate, with only sixteen reportable crimes having occurred since January 31, 2010. Notably, the city has remained homicide free since 1989.
This picture gives us a decent view of the town's North Side. In particular, it shows the Brixton Theater and 2112 Heatley Plaza (the blue and white office building) in relation to the rest of the town.
The North Side houses about 40% of the town's 2,578 residents. The majority live in neighborhoods in the slightly newer South Side. Of the roughly 1,000 residents located on the North Side, only about twenty-five live in the seven houses located on this layout.
In this picture, a group of travelers wait for Amtrak's 'Red Canyon Limited' to arrive. The train is generally half an hour late, as traffic has recently surged on BNSF's single-track Westwood Subdivision. Currently, the line sees an average of seventeen freight trains a day (in addition to the two Amtrak consists). BNSF hopes that a series of ongoing capacity-expansion projects along the line will ease congestion by 2014.
Westwood's South Side has a distinctly suburban feel to it. In general, I feel that this picture captures its tone better than any other. The houses seen here were all built between 1951 and 1955. They, along with many other houses in the area, were constructed by the now-defunct Edgemont Properties Group. Most of the houses seen here have retained their 1950's-era appearances.
A street sweeper works it's way down Toozak Road on a cloudy Tuesday morning. The sweeper was purchased in 2002 by the city's Municipal Government. The decision to buy it ranks among the most controversial decisions in town history, as many residents balked at its $117,000 USD price. It is generally stored behind the fire station when not in use.
As always, my gallery ends with a view down the tracks. BNSF's Westwood Subdivision, which once faced abandonment in the 1970's, has become a massively important artery for goods heading from Port Brickton to the Interior.
It is my hope that you enjoyed this gallery. I intend to add more pictures to it in the near future, so (if interested) feel free to check up on it from time to time. Once again, thank you for visiting this page. Keep on buildin', everyone!