There is gap of several months between progress updates, but that doesn't mean I've not been active in my favorite hobby. Far from it. I spent the past several months working on a furniture factory diorama that will be integrated into the far back corner of the layout. You can see the diorama (not yet completed) left of center in the photo below. I have been able to test the new spur. It allows for some basic operations on the layout.
I've also been giving the foreground some thought. I built this "table" to allow me to build the track offline. It is intended to be a switching area. I printed some #8 turnout templates from the Fast Tracks web site (a fantastic resource) and drew out a nice switching track plan onto the "table" surface.