When I started planning my present layout there were 6 items, I strongly wanted to incorporate:

 

1.       UNION PACIFIC as my prototype.

A large company that during time has had many different diesel engines.  

The era was from the end of steam to the end of the caboose!  

Then it was changes so there was 2 epoche.
From 1945 to 1970
From 1965 to present.
And still only with diesel engines.

After my trip to USA in 2003 I changes epoch again.
Now we have session every month and changes between mid eighties and present.
We only changes engines and use the same cars.

It's more easy that way because we use switchlist made by computer.
We use a program from Albion Software known as Shipit  which have a support group on Yahoo

It happens we take all the old engines and cars and drive a session or two
 

2        DCC

To avoid a lot of work with wiring and to run multiple diesels simultanous. I also enjoy to operate my layout alone. 

 

3        Double track

         I associate that with main line operation, and it looks great, when 2 long trains
          pass each other.

 

4        Long driving distances.

          Because long trains look better this way.

 

5        Point to point.

          Best arrangement when operating your layout.

 

6        Possible continous running.

          Best arrangement when operating the layout alone.

 

These points became the basis of the Arlington Zuni Railroad.


As things have turned out, I have succeded at most points.
During the planning phase I realized, that having a large station with many tracks to freight and passenger trains, I would need the neighbours basement to have even a fair result. I decided to make a large staging yard at a lower level with a spiral at both ends giving access to the layout. It was named Arlington/Zuni.


Arlington/Zuni is built with a balloontrack at both ends. The spirals give access to stations B and E.  A/Z has till now been rebuilt 3 times because of experiences from operating sessions.
First there were 9 staging/passing trackswith capacity of 7 to 15 cars (1 car equals 50’ in real life, in 1:87 that gives 175 mm (
~ 7” )). That appeared insufficient, and became increased to 8 singleended tracks each with a capacity of 26 cars. Later that was changed to 12 staging/passing tracks with a capacity of 24 to 31 cars.  There is also 3 engine  and a caboose track.


When leaving Arlington through the spiral you enter the surface from a tunnel beside Beer Creek (B), where the train passes below 3 bridges and into a mountain (A) and passes over itself. Shortly after the line is divided, one line through a tunnel (from the time it was a single track line), and the other passing around. Next is Pressure Jct., where you have a level crossing twith the connection to Eastchester Bay & High Western RR. Next station is Crazy Horse, where the side line to Alextown diverges. From there you pass under a bridge and into a mountain, and the line is partly hidden to Smugglers Summit. Next is a 3-span bridge, and shortly after that the tracks part again, because the old tunnel didn’t have clearance for double stack trains. A new track was laid outside the tunnel, and the old line relocated to the middle of the old tunnel. You pass around the room once more and into the adjacent room, where White Water Harbour, the biggest station, is located. Here is a ferry connection to
Yellow Head Northern. Behind Alextown the tracks return tthrough the other spiral into Zuni.

 

This is clearly an imaginary line, the only prototypical part is the city of Arlington, located in the northwest Oregon between Portland and Hinkle.

 

Connections to other model railroads are:

 

Northern Alley & Dry Gulch RR connecting via Arlington.

Eastchester Bay & High Western RR via Pressure Jct.

Yellow Head Northern via ferry from White Water Harbour.