Hope you have a Merry Christmas. I am off to Rochester, Minnesota. I will be presenting a talk to the Mayo Clinic Charter House on Thursday on Railroads of the Civil War.
While I'm gone take a look at a tweaked version of V18. I opened up the aisles a bit and shortened the Falmouth peninsula to make access easier by the choke point. Now there are nearly four feet or greater aisles at almost all points without sacrificing 10 car trains with a 36 inch minimum radius.
I also added a continuous run (CR) track across the bottom of the new peninsula. I am really ambivalent about having a CR, but it does add two additional spurs that can be worked in an op session. However, the idea of having to disguise the holes into backdrop really turns me off.
The next bugaboo was the swing section on the office door. I examined the door more closely to determine how it could be built as a swing gate. I concluded that building a swing section with a sky board attached to the door would work very well. This is a case where the low ceiling actually helps, see the photo at the left. Note the low ceiling over Andy's and Tom head (yes, Tom is smiling). I would put a sky board right on the door and paint the corresponding trim molding a sky color.
Overall, this plan solves the cramped Falmouth problem, adds a job to replace the loss of PoLA, and provides a longer siding at Falmouth so that the railroad can handle 10-car trains. It also leaves a lot of aisle space for visitors and operators. Furthermore, it makes taking photos of Aquia Landing easier, as there will be continuous backdrop behind it when shooting across the wharf to south. Finally, it isolates the operators at Aquia Landing from Falmouth, hopefully increasing the feeling of distance. The sky board on the new peninsula would not extend to the ceiling, but only to the level of the window sill, which is about 6 ½ feet high. And then there are the ships. There would be room for Passaic and a large paddlewheel schooner, though I becoming convinced I should covert Passaic to a pond model. I could even add a Baltimore clipper, as you can see several of them in the prototype photos.
....It's looking like a win-win design.