BO Tower in Kalamazoo Razed

BO Tower as seen on July 16, 2016 (Photograph by Craig Sanders)

Another interlocking tower has fallen. On Dec. 28, workers razed Botsford Tower in Kalamazoo, Michigan, after efforts to save and move the century-old structure failed.

Known as BO, the tower was built in 1914 by the Michigan Central to guard an interlocking crossing used by trains of the MC, Pennsylvania Railroad, and Grand Trunk Western.

Until closed in October 2016, BO Tower continued to control a crossing of tracks used by Amtrak, Norfolk Southern and the Grand Elk.

The tower once had a 44-lever interlocking machine. The tower structure itself was owned by the Michigan Department of Transportation, which was not opposed to preservation efforts.

However, Railfan and Railroad magazine reported on its website that the cost of moving the tower to a new location provided to be too much.

MDOT wanted the tower moved because it was too close to the tracks to remain in its current location.

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