Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, gprimr1, Amtrak67 of America, Tadman

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby dowlingm » Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:51 pm

To be honest, I'm still a little stunned that Ottawa is getting high levels. The chances of anywhere else getting them any time soon is quite remote.
dowlingm
 
Posts: 1074
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:42 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:49 pm

dowlingm wrote:To be honest, I'm still a little stunned that Ottawa is getting high levels. The chances of anywhere else getting them any time soon is quite remote.


It almost would've made more sense to rebuild Quebec City's full-highs as 8-inch lows, installed a couple set of lows at MTL Gare Central alongside the AMT & Amtrak full-highs for VIA (and some low-floor AMT) use...then simply changed their car spec all the way over to 8-inch boarding given the extreme improbability of most VIA-only stops ever having the money to be changed or CN/CP allowing the change. Not to mention the outright impossibility of changing any stop shared with GO Transit, West Coast Express, the Cascades, or any reintroduced Amtrak border-crossers out of Chicago hub that could be running on Superliners. It probably would've been easier that way, because Bombardier built the Superliner II's and would be able to cheaply pump out corridor-configured BLV's fast, plentiful, and probably much sooner than VIA sitting and waiting on AMTK's East Coast procurement to shadow them when the Brightline factory is hot.

But no...for whatever reason they're insisting on 48-inch boarding cars and making quixotic one-offs like that one Ottawa full-high that aren't following any sort of overarching national strategy for improving boarding accessibility. It just means they'll be paying station agents forever at lots of very small stops to help out with boarding and work the portable lifts to achieve accessibility compliance with the law. Given that it was literally only two 48-inch stations on the whole country's intercity network and one of them (Quebec City) has no practical reason to be, national 8-inch boarding (with appropriate $$$ for augmenting Gare Central with dedicated lows) would've been so much more straightforward a national strategy.
F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Posts: 7355
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2005 7:26 pm
Location: North Cambridge

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby bostontrainguy » Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:26 pm

Yes, I agree. It would have been a big hassle for some, but as a national standard we should have gone to an 8" North American standard, period.

Not an easy fix I know but in the long run better for everyone especially as we head to double-deck equipment as train length and station throughput get maxed out.

This is a difficult solution and a big challenge but standardized platforms and equipment would simplify things and save millions nationally overall.
Last edited by bostontrainguy on Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
bostontrainguy
 
Posts: 1266
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2011 11:14 am

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby NH2060 » Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:15 pm

F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:It probably would've been easier that way, because Bombardier built the Superliner II's and would be able to cheaply pump out corridor-configured BLV's fast, plentiful, and probably much sooner than VIA sitting and waiting on AMTK's East Coast procurement to shadow them when the Brightline factory is hot.

Didn't BBD pitch a "corridor-ized" UDTC bilevel to VIA at one time? Or was it Hawker-Siddeley?
NH2060
 
Posts: 1503
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:44 pm

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby east point » Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:21 pm

Again VIA cannot wait for surplus AC-1s . Another problem is we have no idea what loads will be on the NEC by 2024. That appears to be the earliest that enough AC-2s are accepted into full service and proven themselves for at least a year . Then maybe some AC-1s can be released. Who here believes they can predict what is needed post 2025 ? All speculation is fruitless.
east point
 
Posts: 941
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2016 1:50 pm

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Wed Jan 03, 2018 8:45 am

NH2060 wrote:
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:It probably would've been easier that way, because Bombardier built the Superliner II's and would be able to cheaply pump out corridor-configured BLV's fast, plentiful, and probably much sooner than VIA sitting and waiting on AMTK's East Coast procurement to shadow them when the Brightline factory is hot.

Didn't BBD pitch a "corridor-ized" UDTC bilevel to VIA at one time? Or was it Hawker-Siddeley?


Hawker got swallowed by UTDC which got swallowed into Bombardier borg, so you're right with any of those answers. Hawker was the original designer of the BLV coach and manufactured the BLV I & II generations in the 70's, UTDC manufactured the BLV III/IV/V generations in the 80's, and BBD has thus far done the BLV VI/VII/VIII generations (far more numerous than the Hawker/UTDC batches combined) from the 90's to present.
F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Posts: 7355
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2005 7:26 pm
Location: North Cambridge

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby mdvle » Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:40 am

Platform height isn't a simple issue.

Regarding VIA and Ottawa, I suspect the issue is the reality that VIA is stuck with the rolling stock they have for the long term (until it falls apart and VIA is likely shutdown would be my guess[*]). As such putting a high level platform in at Ottawa offers 2 compelling advantages:

1) it works with what they have

2) it is the one market segment that VIA can make a very compelling case for business - high level boarding at Montreal and Ottawa make it convenient and attractive, 2 hour journey and the ability to minimize delay issues given VIA owns a (large?) portion of the route and VIA could dominate that segment with little investment. And while I wouldn't want to get anyone's hopes up/down, all else failing (see [*]) it is the one route where the Acela equipment might work as a "well, there is no other option" fallback.

To get back to platform height, the problem - a very big problem - is that 8" doesn't offer level boarding and for any new service going forward that will be mandatory or that service will be tied up in the courts as disability and senior advocates challenge it.

It is very likely that the GTA will be moving away from 8" platforms, and possibly even the rest of South-western Ontario. Metrolinx and Toronto (for RER and SmartTrack, and longer term the Ontario high-speed to London and Windsor) are currently working on deciding equipment and other standards, and while I won't try to argue it will be high level I would both hope and be surprised if its not some sort of platform height that allows level boarding to the entire train. As the system moves from being a long distance commuter system to a hybrid system there will be more seniors, young children, disabled, or even those with more limited mobility wanting to use the system and the current step boarding will be unacceptable. If the people in charge are doing their job they should be aware that VIA has a consistent track record of losing to disability challenges to their service.

[*] VIA for several years now has had an ambitious plan to move the Montreal - Ottawa - Toronto corridor to high speed with dedicated tracks, and has also made it known that they need to work on replacing their equipment regardless of how accomplished. Despite the election of what would likely be the most friendly government they could have hoped for over 2 years ago now, nothing has happened and thus is unlikely to happen.
mdvle
 
Posts: 130
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 1:48 pm

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby dowlingm » Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:45 pm

mdvle wrote:2) it is the one market segment that VIA can make a very compelling case for business - high level boarding at Montreal and Ottawa make it convenient and attractive, 2 hour journey and the ability to minimize delay issues given VIA owns a (large?) portion of the route and VIA could dominate that segment with little investment.
Bingo. Montreal = VIA Rail HQ, Ottawa = central govt, close together, VIA owns about half the track mileage. I believe though that after ramping up the schedule VIA might be running into issues getting any more slots at CN Coteau.
mdvle wrote:To get back to platform height, the problem - a very big problem - is that 8" doesn't offer level boarding and for any new service going forward that will be mandatory or that service will be tied up in the courts as disability and senior advocates challenge it.
Not sure I would go this far. While the Canadian Transportation Agency has handed VIA some Ls regarding accommodating disabled travellers *on the train* I don't believe there are legislative imperatives on VIA like Amtrak has.
dowlingm
 
Posts: 1074
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:42 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby Tadman » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:30 pm

Mod note: Please try to keep this to Acela. We have a great Via forum that is a bit quiet if you want to discuss Canadian corridor projects. Thanks.
Tadman
 
Posts: 8800
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Fri Jan 05, 2018 12:42 pm

It appears I missed this article when it was printed in The Times. Apparently it appeared in the Metro section that is not included in the National Edition:

http://nytimes.com/2017/10/02/fashion/m ... train.html

Fair Use:

..At the moment, the train is famous less for moving passengers than for sorting them into a cultural set. Not since the Concorde’s last flight in 2003 has a means of transportation given the language such an evocative code word for a way of life — the flitting between cities of Northeastern elites, whose values and habits are said to have been repudiated in the last election.

Sinister cabal or not, the Acela people are an orderly bunch: They march on board in single file, a loose column of pressed shirts and tightly packed totes, rolling luggage and newspapers folded under their arms. When they disembark, they are slightly rumpled, perhaps more than slightly late, agitated by splenetic tweeting and an excess of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee that sells for $3.50 in the cafe car.

Lizzie O’Leary, the New York-based host of the public radio show “Marketplace Weekend” and a frequent Acela rider, shrugs off all the recent train-shaming. Ms. O’Leary, who relies on the Acela to visit her family in Washington, has become an Emily Post-like figure in the Amtrak community

All told, more fortification that when the new equipment enters revenue service in likely 2025, Amtrak would be ill-advised to renaming it's premium Corridor service.

Acela is a household word.
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 13528
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Chicago Sub; MP 18.71)

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby gokeefe » Fri Jan 05, 2018 11:04 pm

Agreed.

FYI ... Revenue service for the first new trainset should be quite a bit earlier than 2025.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 10608
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby David Benton » Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:12 am

Remember the discussions we had when the name was introduced....
Moderator worldwide railfan , Rail travel & trip reports
The only train trips I regret are the ones I didn't take.
User avatar
David Benton
 
Posts: 8166
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 11:29 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby Matt Johnson » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:54 pm

Interesting video from Alstom. If the image at the 22 sec mark is indicative of recent design refinements, it looks like there's a piece of exterior cladding to smooth the transition between the tilt car profile and the slab sided locomotive, whether for aerodynamics or just for aesthetics.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aw8bQsoLEB0
Last edited by Matt Johnson on Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Matt Johnson
 
Posts: 4041
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:57 pm
Location: Hazlet, NJ

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby ExCon90 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:55 pm

On the link, check the comment from Rip Curl.
ExCon90
 
Posts: 3826
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 1:22 pm

Re: Acela Replacement and Disposition Discussion

Postby bostontrainguy » Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:30 pm

bostontrainguy
 
Posts: 1266
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2011 11:14 am

PreviousNext

Return to Amtrak

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: frequentflyer, Railjunkie and 26 guests