Akron Barberton Belt Railroad becomes part of a railroad cluster owned by Wheeling Corp.

The Barberton Herald: B.J. Minier – July 21, 1994

The Akron & Barberton Belt Railroad (ABB) has been sold to the Akron & Barberton Cluster (ABC) a new company combining Conrail and ABB railroads into a wholly-owned subsidiary of Wheeling Corporation, owners of Wheeling and Lane Erie Railway.

Wheeling Corporation President Larry Parsons confirmed Friday that Conrail and ABB were combining so customers along the rail routes of Kent, Akron, and Barberton could be handled by one railroad instead of two. He estimated the deal to cost under $2 million.

“It is the Conrail properties plus the ABB properties that are being acquired,” Parsons said. “In Akron these properties are interlaced. It makes a lot more sense to put them together.”

Parson also said that combining the railroads would make the operations more viable.

“Putting them together should be better for everybody.” he said.

As of Friday morning, Charles Laggan, ABB’s general manager, said he believes the deal was set to close Wednesday.

At that time he did not know whether ABB’s 10 employees would be retained under the new ownership.

“It’s uncertain at this point,” Laggan said. “There has been no offer of employment at this point.”

Parsons, however, confirmed by phone Friday afternoon that ABB’s employees would stay.

“They will all be offered employment,” Parsons said.

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