Grand Trunk Western Railroad ~
South Oakland Division
The SOC has existed
over 50 years in the Metro Detroit Area!
The South Oakland County Model railroad Club,
Inc. was formed in 1954 and is a Michigan 501c7 nonprofit
corporation. Space was obtained on the second floor of the Grand
Trunk Western's Birmingham Station, and construction of the club's
first layout started in the fall of that year.
After 24 years at that location, the Grand
Trunk Western sold the station, which became a restaurant, and the
club lost its layout room. Development then started on the club's
modular layout, one of the first HO modular designs, that predates
today's standards. The modular layout has been displayed at a
number of train shows and at Greenfield Village's Railroad Days
In 1982 space was obtained in the Baker
Center, Clawson, a former elementary school. Construction of that
layout began in early 1983. Monthly visitor's nights were held
and an Annual Holiday Open House was conducted for the public.
However, the location was needed for other purposes and the SOC had
to vacate the Baker Center in 1997.
A former boiler room was located at the
Madison Community Hospital and after lengthy renovation layout
construction began. A change in hospital management occurred and
notice was given to leave at the beginning of 2001. Round robin
meetings at members homes were held while searching for a new club
The present Hazel Park building was purchased
at the beginning of 2002. Building renovations and layout design
are complete. Layout construction is well on the way. Today the layout
trackwork is complete and many sections have scenery. Operations are
performed using a Car-Card forwarding system. Motive power is DCC
controled using Digitrax. A Dispatch Board utilizing JMRI software is in operation and most trackage is
signaled. Operation using GTW Rules of Operation is in effect.
Effort is made to be as accurate as possible.