Coal mine/power plant cold be located at the mid point of the east wall. They will be separated by an outcrop from the upper level, with a pass through tunnel. They will be switched from the aisle track, with long turnouts to aide in switching. The empty coal train will be held in the main yard. It will go to the coal mine and swap for the loads. The loads will travel the entire route and swap for the empties at the power plant. It will take empties back to the main yard. Note the loads could also layover at the main yard, so there would be 2 coal trains.
Historically Wellington, on our old layout, was one of the least switched locations. This could be because of how high it was, or the long reach, but I believe people did not like picking up their train, just to start switching at the same spot. This could also be the case on our new layout, and it's main yard location. However, the southwest corner could be modelled after a time saver layout. It would be treated like a branchline, and could be as complicated as we want. I wonder if a Wye could be included? This branch could occupy all of the non-yard area of the west wall and be an interesting and challenging switching area.
The branchline will be continued on 1 side of the peninsula with the sawmill located in the center loop. Besides creating more area for 2 level scenery, the extra length will separate the towns on the branch and allow them to be narrower, leaving more room for the mainlines and industries.
The harbour could also be at the end of a long spur, maybe with a cargo dock along the spur and separate from the harbour itself. This could be used as another separate train, with only 1 or 2 stops on the rest of the mainline.
As a result of all of the above, 1 to 2 operators on the time saver, 1 or 2 operators on the elevated branchline, 1 operator for the coal drag, 1 operator on the harbour job,1 operator for the log train, 1 or 2 passenger trains, and 2 or 3 mainline trains. If we also have an oil train, and an ore train, there could be 15 people operating at one time. Possibly not, but you get the idea. Up to 9 operators not blocking the mainline.
The mainlines, main switching areas, would be located from the east of the furnace, to the end of the peninsula or about 100 feet. But there would still be several, equally spaced, isolated industrial switching areas, along the rest of the layout. All the mainline trains could be multiple drops, at large industries, like Zorra Cement, team tracks, lumber deliveries, ADM and other mills. Switching leads and passing tracks will be a necessity at these locations.
What about an ore train. Well we have no ore mine nor a steel mill (I think the south wall by the fire exit would be a great place for a steel mill). The ore train could arrive via an interchange siding and the steel mill could be represented by photos and background buildings like coal towers, coke ovens, and a warehouse. Lots of traffic.
This is presented as a primary layout and operating plan. As such it is open for debate, changes and welcomes comments to my email, which is email@example.com . This has been developed, taking in to consideration our operating system, congestion, variety in operations and train types.