Some stats on the layout:

Scale: N scale (1:160) US Outline

The layout room (in a garage) is 10.7ft (3.3m) x 18.7ft (5.7m). The first level (lower level staging) is 40.55″ (1.03m) off the ground, the second level (Western Avenue yard and Western Avenue Metra Station) is 54.33″ (1.38m) off the ground, with a 13.78″ (35cm) spacing between these two levels. The third (not yet built) level is 74″ (1.88m) off the ground, with a 19.68″ (50cm) spacing between the second and third levels. The width of the layout boards from wall to front of the boards is 18″ (45cm).

The first helix (between the lower level staging and Western Avenue Yard level) has a height of 14″ (35.5cm) and a diameter of 37.2″ (94.5cm), using Kato Super-Elevated double-track.

I am using the Digitrax DCC system, running an Evolution Advanced System (with DCS210+ command station) with a DT602 throttle, a DT402 throttle & a DT400 throttle as well as two UT4 throttles. I am also using Digitrax BDL168, BXP88 and BD4 block detectors, along with one CML SIGM20 signal controller and two Digitrax SE8C signal controllers which enables me to have realistic operating signalling and block detection.  For turnout control I am using four CML Electronics DAC20 stationary decoders, two Digitrax DS64 quad stationary decoders, a Tam Valley Quad LN servo decoder, and a few DCC Concepts Universal DCC decoders.

I use JMRI OperationsPro for realistic switchlist creation and operations management.  These are relayed to 4 Android tablets around the layout so the engineers have access to switchlists on the go, and the system can be updated on-the-fly as they complete their jobs.

In the future I’ll be running Railroad & Co. software for automatic operation of passenger trains on the mainline thereby enabling me to concentrate on local switching without worrying what is happening on the mainline