New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

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Re: NH, W MA, VT Commuter Rail Forum Location Feedback Desir

Postby CPF363 » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:35 pm

How about simply re instituting the Baystater that Amtrak ran between Boston and New Haven by way of Springfield with a separate Boston to Amherst train. Modifications to the B&A between Worcester and Springfield could be the following:

- Restore the 2nd main line between CP-60 and Cottage Street in E. Brookfield (the right of way is wide enough for a third track)
- Install a new interlocking and 1/2 cross-over at Cottage Street so that auto trains can exit the auto yard
- Move CP-64 west one mile to make it so that auto trains can exit the auto yard and pull up for meets with eastbound trains
- Install a new interlocking and 1/2 cross-over at the eastern end of the interchange track in Palmer for added flexibility for freight movements between CSX and NECR
- Move CP-79 east one mile to the east
- Re-configure the tracks in Palmer to include a power switch and new connecting track on to the NECR at CP-83

The NECR's line would also have to be updated with welded rail and signals for higher-speed running between Palmer and Amherst. Add a few short tracks to serve as a lay-over facility for trains in Amherst
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Re: NH, W MA, VT Commuter Rail Forum Location Feedback Desir

Postby Rockingham Racer » Thu Dec 03, 2015 7:28 am

There's a post today in the "Commuter Rail to Rhode Island" thread. Put up a "Commuter Rail to New Hampshire" thread, and we're done.
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Re: Commuter Rail to NH Discussion

Postby YamaOfParadise » Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:54 pm

djlong wrote:<snip> One thing I left out is that there IS development going on north of Crown Street - on the other side of Bridge Street, a new 'community' is being built in the area that is basically bordered by the Merrimack River to the east, the Nashua River to the north, Bridge Street to the south and the rail line leading to Manchester and Concord at it's west. This would certainly HELP the viability of Crown Street but I don't think it changes the equation all on it's own.


I was thinking about that, too, but I'm not sure if they would help or hurt. It's a private gated community, and it looks to be rather expensive; if for whatever reason they didn't like the project at a whole or pieces of it, both the development company and its residents would have the resources to hurt the project. I don't suspect they would, though, because the relative closeness of Boston has to be at least some of a draw at a place like that. Having a way for pedestrian traffic to get across the Nashua river from the north would regardless be really helpful to get ridership up in the station, particularly if/when it continues north; that way, it's also generating outward traffic as well as being a destination.

Something else about the Crown Street area; how's the area as far as safety around there? I know there's worse areas in Nashua, but based on the barbed-wire fences around some properties, and industrial areas surrounding a small neighborhood area, it seems like it isn't necessarily the nicest of places... which isn't to say the location for this isn't too bad, and it's certainly better than say, all of Lawrence. I basically just can't tell if it's run-down and unsafe, or just run-down. The constant commuter traffic to and from Hudson certainly helps keep eyes on the place in the day; the station could actually do some measure to improve the safety (and property value) a bit.
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Re: Commuter Rail to NH Discussion

Postby BandA » Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:47 pm

If the layover is near downtown Nashua, and they pay for South Nashua, what is the incremental cost (capital & operating) of a downtown station?

If they can get MA to pay for the South Nashua station by placing it on the MA side of the border (and maybe build the parking garage on the NH side to capture the property taxes ;) ), they might have enough money for the downtown station?
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Re: Commuter Rail to NH Discussion

Postby YamaOfParadise » Thu Dec 03, 2015 5:24 pm

BandA wrote:If the layover is near downtown Nashua, and they pay for South Nashua, what is the incremental cost (capital & operating) of a downtown station?

If they can get MA to pay for the South Nashua station by placing it on the MA side of the border (and maybe build the parking garage on the NH side to capture the property taxes ;) ), they might have enough money for the downtown station?


Not sure overall, but I'd say at the very least layover costs would be lower for both than just for South Nashua; I'd namely just say that because securing space and such in Pan Am's yard should be cheaper than building new space from scratch.
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Re: Commuter Rail to NH Discussion

Postby newpylong » Sun Dec 06, 2015 8:03 am

gokeefe wrote:
djlong wrote:Also, the mayor has been talking about South Nashua as the first spot if the city is forced to "go it alone" - meaning that the state won't help.


The fact that local politicians are talking about doing this without any state help whatsoever is the first big sign that I think something is about to happen. They're sick and tired of waiting and they're going to write their own book. Good for them.


Let's see what happens when voters see the price tag.
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby NH2060 » Thu Dec 10, 2015 3:26 am

newpylong wrote:Let's see what happens when voters see the price tag.

Might not make a difference if folks want it that much. Case in point, when the results of a study RE: a commuter rail line/network into and out of Halifax were released a few months ago showing it to "not be feasible" (which some found debatable) the city still went ahead with the next steps to make it a reality. And one of the 3 main priorities laid out was to talk with CN about using its rails (and perhaps being able to pay a more reasonable access fee).
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby artman » Thu Dec 10, 2015 11:28 am

100 pages and counting, for something yet to come to fruition. That says something right there
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby Jeff Smith » Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:11 pm

That's nothing; check out the Lackawanna Cut Off thread in NJT! Whether the exercise is academic or not, it's still interesting.
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby Jeff Smith » Fri Dec 11, 2015 1:50 pm

Oooh, pretty map! NHBR.com New Hampshire Business Review

Brief, fair-use quote:

Public-private effort pushed for rail project

Supporters see partnership as a solution for funding
SNIPS:
Rebuffed by the NH Legislature, advocates for expanded commuter rail service have turned to a funding concept that has yet to be tried in New Hampshire
...
The Capital Corridor Rail & Transit Alternatives Analysis estimated a $246 million capital budget for station infrastructure and rail upgrades from Boston through Nashua to Manchester. The operating and bond payback costs were estimated at $11 million per year.

An alternative plan would bring the rail service up to Concord, but the 2014 analysis by the NHTRA and NH Department of Transportation said the plan to have two stations in Nashua, one in downtown Manchester and one at the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport would be the most cost-effective in relation to the economic benefit it would bring.
...
Attachments
NH Commuter Rail-Map.jpg
New Hampshire Commuter Rail Routes
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby gokeefe » Fri Dec 11, 2015 1:59 pm

Interesting that the "free market" analyst stated "up to 3,000 riders per day". That's pretty significant ridership. If we assume 261 workdays in a year that yields annual ridership of 783,000. Sounds about right to me.
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Fri Dec 11, 2015 2:29 pm

gokeefe wrote:Interesting that the "free market" analyst stated "up to 3,000 riders per day". That's pretty significant ridership. If we assume 261 workdays in a year that yields annual ridership of 783,000. Sounds about right to me.


Wholly consistent with Lowell Line boardings from the Blue Book counts. If you throw out couple reverse commute trains per day, utterly pointless Mishawum the average daily boardings at the 6 full-time intermediate stops is 874. And that's despite Wedgemere and Winchester Center being in eyesight of each other's platforms and the system-worst example of 2 too-close stops cannibalizing each other's ridership; if it were Winch Ctr. solo it would be 95% the ridership of the combo and Winch would join Anderson RTC, North Billerica, and Lowell in the >1000 daily boardings club.

Manchester, Merrimack, etc. might start off as slower cookers. But I'd absolutely expect each of the Nashua pair to debut at >600 and scale up from there to the upper half of the line's daily rankings, since Nashuans are already accustomed to slamming the Lowell parking garage. North Chelmsford probably starts high too at a Wilmington-ish 500+ because of great walkup and bus route accessibility with even closer proximity and pre-existing routine of driving to Lowell to catch the train. It's a self-starter extension because unlike most others where it takes awhile to get the suburbanites to warm to trying the train, this is already a corridor (south half at least) with longstanding commuter rail on the brain.
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby gokeefe » Fri Dec 11, 2015 3:27 pm

F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:It's a self-starter extension because unlike most others where it takes awhile to get the suburbanites to warm to trying the train, this is already a corridor (south half at least) with longstanding commuter rail on the brain.


I completely agree there. Comparable in some senses to the Brunswick extension of the Downeaster which pulled a lot of riders who were traveling to Portland to take the train.
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby Jeff Smith » Fri Dec 11, 2015 5:18 pm

At a member's request, I split some earlier posts on the Manchester/Lawrence line to cover freight usage. That topic is here: Manchester-Lawrence still in use (Freight Discussion)?

If some of the posts in here concern freight usage, please use the report function and in remarks request they be moved. Thanks!
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Re: New Hampshire Commuter Rail Discussion

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Mar 01, 2016 4:36 pm

Shilling (not Curt, because that would be "Sch") for dollars: WMUR.com

In spite of my little dig, I have no opinion on the project. My complaint is about the statement (my emphasis added) below. Um, I know what they mean, but there's still a cost to taxpayers, although it's spread out across federal funds, not state or local. But I appreciate them being cavalier with my $$$! (/end sarcasm)

Group says NH commuter rail would bring thousands of jobs, millions in development

Supporters say the $4 million needed for this phase of the project is largely federal money and will be of no cost to local taxpayers.

The study will answer many questions about expanding commuter rail from Boston to Manchester, like how much the whole thing is going to cost.

“Bringing passenger rail to Manchester would have a transformative impact on New Hampshire's statewide economy,” said David Preece, of the New Hampshire Rail Transit Authority.

A 2015 study showed that 668,000 riders would use the commuter rail, with four stops in New Hampshire -- two in Nashua, one near the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport and another in the Granite Street area of Manchester.
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