This N-scale design is based on the South Carolina Central RR, a class III railway that operates 42 miles of former CSX Transportation trackage in South Carolina, from the CSX interchange at Florence, to end of track at Bishopville. Primary commodities include agricultural products, chemicals, construction materials, fertilizers, minerals, plastics, pulp and paper, and steel and scrap. It handles about 30,000 carloads per year.
Thanks for the good review of the design. When I found the line, I was impressed with how much heavy industry there was in only 41 miles. It hauls 30,000 carloads per year, so there is plenty of switching.
I have been using 3rd PlanIt by El Dorado Software since the mid-1990s. I can't say much about the learning curve since all new features were introduced over a 20 year period and I kept upgrading my software.
I am also willing to help others with designing their layouts (for free of course) since that is how I get to enjoy the hobby at the moment. So anyone wanting help, just send me a PM.