The Grafton and Upton Railroad is no stranger to history and has only had 3 private owners since its establishment in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The evolution of the railroad began in 1874 as narrow-gauge steam railroad, transitioning to standard gauge, electrification in 1919 and eventually dieselization in 1946, it’s easy to see there’s been no shortage of continuous improvement throughout our history. To the Grafton and Upton, continuous improvement is our everyday goal and it means providing first class service that not only benefits the customer but provides strong positive economic benefits to the community. This business model became evident in the G&U’s more recent history when Jon Delli Priscoli invested in the revitalization of the of Grafton and Upton Railroad.
Since 2009, Jon Delli Priscoli has led a talented staff on individuals on a quest to transform the Grafton and Upton into a linear industrial park, serving the Interstate 90 and 495 corridors in central-eastern Massachusetts. In this initiative, Jon and his team identified a critical demand for a railroad that can satisfy the needs of all clients, even those located off the mainline. Specifically, he wanted to build a railroad with consistent operating performance that continuously meets the needs of their clientele and become a partner in their growth. Furthermore, Jon recognized the need for private investment within the railroad industry and this was evident in the investment in a state of the art propane distribution facility; among other projects like the G&U’s Envirobulk facility in Upton, MA.
Opening at the end of January 2018, the Grafton and Upton Railroad Liquid Propane Gas Transfer Facility (LPGTF) immediately became a new standard in the industry. Boasting state of the art technologies, quick transfer time and scheduled shipments, the propane facility can fill a demand for propane that has been absent for decades. The LPGTF is sign of G&U’s commitment to safety and continuous improvement operating models.
What is more is that the G&U is well positioned to provide their clients throughout the Northeast with comprehensive supply chain solutions through the integration of logistics services, multimodal freight transportation, door-to-door pricing and single bill shipments. G&U is a complete supply chain solution; seamlessly combining rail, local and regional trucking, warehouse, cross dock, and other value-added services. Our dedicated and experienced staff works closely with our customers to provide tailor-built transportation solutions that are responsive to individual needs. We can say “yes” to just about every client and bring added stability to the client’s business.
G&U is also able to offer value-added services you won’t find at a simple transload. Unique build-to-suit capabilities allow us to quickly update our hub to meet your specific needs. As a 3PL partner, we have the ability to handle any type of railcar and can even accommodate long center-beam lumber cars, high cube boxcars, gondola’s and dry bulk hoppers including cement, fly ash, plastics, aggregates and more. With large storage capacities and unloading capabilities, our Trans-loading and Warehousing services can handle any product. Our teams are trained in loading and unloading railcars safely and effectively to guarantee our client’s products make it to their destination on time. In addition, by utilizing our extensive network off affiliates and 3PL partners, we can add port, customs, import/export and intermodal services to our offerings. We have become a global company with the experience and strength to handle any size opportunity.
JON DELLI PRISCOLI
Jon Delli Priscoli solely owns First Colony Group, a multi-building and multi-tenant commercial property portfolio in the Greater Boston area. Over the past 30 years, Jon has permitted, built, developed, and sold 1,000+ residential units, 3,000,000+ square feet of industrial and commercial space, and 500+ acres of industrial parks. Jon has a 2.2 million square foot permitted development on the Holliston/Milford Line known as New Hopping Brook Industrial Park.
The Grafton & Upton Railroad, one of the companies Jon owns as part of First Colony Group, a freight transportation company located in central Massachusetts that was named one of the country’s fastest growing short line by CSX Transportation. This is no small feat considering that the railroad had been dormant for 20 years when he purchased it in 2009. In his earlier railroad career, Jon owned and operated Quincy Bay Terminal in Quincy, MA an industrial line and he played a key role in launching the Cape Cod Central Railroad.
The railroad Jon has been most passionate in owning and developing is the diminutive one Ellis Atwood built for Edaville in 1947. Like most children raised in southern New England, Jon has fond memories of visiting Edaville Railroad with his family. In 1974, he was hired for a summer job. Fast forward to 2001, in a full circle moment, Jon purchased the Edaville Railroad Park. Since purchase, Jon been actively improving and expanding the park into family-oriented theme park open nine months a year. Recently Jon invested over $20,000,000 for the creation of the only Thomas Land featuring “Thomas the Tank Engine” theme park in the United States with an exclusive license with Mattel. In 2017, over a quarter of a million guests visited Edaville Family Theme Park. Edaville has hosted over six million visitors throughout the years and is featured on Good Morning America for its’s design around children with Autism and other learning disabilities
Jon is committed to the historical preservation of buildings and railway. He is a patron of the arts and an avid collector of American antiques from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries. He also is a Trustee of the historic Wayside Inn in Sudbury, Massachusetts as well as a trustee of the Sippican Historical Society in Marion, MA. In order to be closer to Edaville, he bought and lovingly restored a locally-significant historic property “Leyden Cottage” (circa 1852 gothic revival home) in Carver, where he lives with his wife and four sons. Jon and Jennifer are currently restoring a 2nd Empire-French Stone Mansion “Deerfoot” in Southborough, MA, with a chapel, carriage house
and cottage as a Boutique Hotel, along with restoring the Frederick Law Olmsted 19th century landscape.
Michael Milanoski, President of the Grafton and Upton Railroad, is an executive with 25 years of progressive-change leadership and management of public, quasi-public and private sector organizations. His focus includes strategic analysis and planning, finance and designing and permitting complex infrastructure projects. His demonstrated problem solving expertise includes analyzing multilayered issues while concentrating on critical functions to create innovative solutions in a cost effective and efficient manner. He brings a customer-centric focus that is designed to help the customers of the Grafton and Upton railroad meet and exceed their objectives.
John DeWaele brings nearly two decades of transportation and project management experience to the Grafton and Upton Railroad. His passion for freight railroading is evident through his continued improvement of railroad operations and dedication to first class customer service. He specializes in the development of full logistics models that deliver value-added services to customers located online and throughout New England. His dedication has increased the Grafton and Upton's operational proficiency and developed new business models that offer a full line of railroad services. His drive and dedication for exceptional customer service and safe and efficient railroading is driving new standards in the railroad industry.