Indeed you could make quite a wonderful layout based around the propane dealer at Allan Street. It’s a pretty obvious track plan. Quickly measuring the length of the space you’d need your scale’s equivalent of 650’ (in HO that’s like an eight foot shelf or maybe two four foot UMG modules?)
Looking at the 1990 aerial photo (excerpt above) that the PEI Government share on their site it sure looks like two tanks so maybe I’ve always remembered it wrong?
Most PEI based layouts I’d consider are set in a period before I was on the Island. We lived on Young Street and this crossing was really close to my house. I went to school nearby too and I could cut across a field just east of this crossing. Around 1987-1988 all the trains originated in Borden and would run to Charlottetown and back in a day. In the winter they’d arrive in town around noon and be headed back to Borden by one o’clock – that meant I usually missed my first class. This is one layout that strikes me as being really worth building and setting in 1986-1988. Irving, who owned this propane dealer, remained a strong advocate for keeping the railroad and shipped propane into this terminal until the very end.
Since hazardous materials couldn’t be handled on the same ferry crossings as people propane travelled during the nighttime. We’d see a block of tank cars arrive and they’d drop them in the Charlottetown yard behind the station. In the above photo the crew landed in town with just 1757 and a train that was only the two idler flats from Borden. They turned the train over on the wye then backed into the yard to tie onto a tank car they’d drop at Allan Street on the way out of town.
That’s an operation you could model on the layout. All trains are always staged in Borden (A). They arrive from Borden and just pass through the scene, blowing for Allan Street and maybe (if I was ever lucky) waving to that kid trying to catch his breath from running to meet them. The train could be just as in the above photo and when it’s turned at the yard (B) it reappears with the tank car in tow. How that outbound train is arranged is up to you. They might have to pick up an empty tank car too or not. Schurmann’s had a lumber yard at the next crossing (Longworth Avenue) so maybe the train has an inbound load for their. Up until the end, the other strong customer was A&S Scrap Metal out in Sherwood so your train could have scrap gondolas for them too.
I’d set the scene in winter or maybe that winter-spring season. I remember seeing trains that came into town to work the propane track that were probably run as plow extras so had a plow and flanger in the consist.