New York State Expansion Thoughts

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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby mtuandrew » Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:01 pm

Is passenger service to the Tier (from anywhere) what Tier residents want, or are we just assuming that's the way to their hearts?
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby gokeefe » Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:26 pm

I think the question to ask is whether or not passenger rail service would better serve the public and assist economic development. That is a goal you can be certain the public wants. If passenger rail service supports that great ... If it doesn't then I think you're in trouble.

The case for service remains strong for any community that has significant economic links to New York City.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby east point » Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:12 pm

Now if the interstates in the future require self driving vehicles then the demand for passenger rail ? ? Too expensive for most persons ?
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby gokeefe » Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:26 pm

east point wrote:Now if the interstates in the future require self driving vehicles then the demand for passenger rail ? ? Too expensive for most persons ?


Actually I think self-driving vehicles will only increase congestion due to all sorts of people who will now be able to transport themselves who currently cannot.

They also have the same weaknesses and issues that any car does, specifically that one must stop the vehicle to use the restroom and they don't typically have a fully stocked cafe car attached. :-D

That being said ... I think there are a lot of people who would use their self-driving (and perhaps self-parking) vehicles to transport themselves curbside at the train station where they will then commence the longer distance journey.

These thoughts would point to the possible idea that rail passenger service is only more likely (not less likely) to become important. Also worth noting that for many of these folks transportation to the airport, although easier may not necessarily be any more attractive due to the inconveniences of security checkpoints and the generally cramped conditions in airline cabins.

All of this adds up to the likelihood that demand for passenger rail can be expected to continue to increase over time.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:24 pm

The entire Southern Tier is very close to NY-17 a modern and fast highway in every respect. Binghamton via Scranton would involve more time by train than by bus, the operating costs would be high and probably not more than one daily round trip. The same dollars would be much better spent in support of better express bus services. Hourly bus service would better serve Binghamton than one passenger train a day would and at less cost. I am all for improved passenger train service but in this case I don't think it is warranted and busses would provide better service. As for Binghamton via Port Jervis this would be a total and huge waste of money.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby BandA » Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:29 pm

Just thought of this...a self-driving car could be directed to drop you off then park somewhere that is inexpensive or free. It could also be a shared vehicle or an Uber. Any of these cases could mess with the economics of competing trains, especially in high real-estate areas like NYC area.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby EuroStar » Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:42 am

BandA wrote:Just thought of this...a self-driving car could be directed to drop you off then park somewhere that is inexpensive or free. It could also be a shared vehicle or an Uber. Any of these cases could mess with the economics of competing trains, especially in high real-estate areas like NYC area.

The disruptions coming with self-driving cars are very difficult to predict (as is the timing of their actual adoption). Parking the cars somewhere inexpensive will mean more congestion because for NYC that pretty much means driving to NJ, Long Island or at least the far reaches of Queens. Congestion could go down however because of car sharing where after the car drops you off goes and picks me up (because say my work schedule is different than yours). In the city that could mean fewer cars parked on the side of the streets and more travel lanes available. Reduction in the number of cars might happen naturally if the new cars are more and more expensive and fewer and fewer people can afford to own one (while renting one on demand remains reasonably cheap). If the new self-driving cars are cheap though, the opposite might happen with everyone, including children, having a dedicated vehicle for personal use. In my opinion it is impossible to predict which effect will win out, so it is unknown whether there will be less or more demand for train service.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby Ridgefielder » Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:34 am

Noel Weaver wrote:The entire Southern Tier is very close to NY-17 a modern and fast highway in every respect. Binghamton via Scranton would involve more time by train than by bus, the operating costs would be high and probably not more than one daily round trip. The same dollars would be much better spent in support of better express bus services. Hourly bus service would better serve Binghamton than one passenger train a day would and at less cost. I am all for improved passenger train service but in this case I don't think it is warranted and busses would provide better service. As for Binghamton via Port Jervis this would be a total and huge waste of money.
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Noel,

There's no question that NY17 is a fast highway, or that an express bus would be quicker than a train for say the first 150 of the ~180 miles from Binghamton to NYC.

The problem is that last 30 miles. Past Middletown NY, 17 turns into a congested commuter artery that feeds you into the Eastern Spur of the Jersey Turnpike. Take the route through Scranton on the interstate, and after Parsippany you're on either I-80 going through Patterson or NJ-3 through Clifton-- both perpetually busy. Regardless of whether the bus uses the PA or NY routing, either it ends up at the Lincoln Tunnel and the dreaded Port Authority Bus Terminal: perhaps the only transportation facility in the NY metro area that is more widely-loathed and overcrowded than NY Penn.

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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby scottychaos » Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:52 am

Most people studying the coming revolution of self-driving cars predict that once they are *fully* adopted, and there are no longer any humans driving vehicles at all, then highway efficiency will be increased dramatically and congestion issues will be dramatically decreased..because the #1 cause of accidents and slow-downs is: bad drivers. Take the humans out of the equation, and things improve on a massive scale. Its still 25 to 50 years away for full adoption, but its coming, it will definately happen..an interesting video on the topic:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHzzSao6ypE

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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby Jeff Smith » Fri Apr 27, 2018 2:53 pm

We do have a topic on Tier/Binghamton Service: viewtopic.php?f=46&t=61061&p=1470580#p1470580
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby Paul1705 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:51 pm

One thing to consider is the investment already made in new Empire Corridor stations that could be utilized a lot more than they are today: Schenectady, Rochester, Niagara Falls and soon Exchange Street, Buffalo. Syracuse is fairly new, and there are substantial old stations at Rome and Utica.

With an increase in frequencies (and I hope speed) the next task is to consider new in-fill stops - perhaps Colonie (for the west side of the Albany area), Batavia and maybe one in the Auburn area (Weedsport?).
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby ryanov » Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:28 am

Seems to me the bigger problem is potential contraction. With Amtrak warning about potentially suspending service past Poughkeepsie (I am guessing heading into, not out of, NYC?), expansion seems a little less likely.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby DanD3815 » Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:38 am

I strongly believe that reviving passenger service on the west shore line could be one of the most impactful rail expansion projects in NYS and needs to happen. To give cities such as Nyack, Newburgh Kingston and even Catskill direct service would be a huge boost to those towns along the west side of the Hudson River. Newburgh and Kingston are currently going through a revitalization period albeit a slow one. Giving those cities direct rail access would jump start their progress and has the potential to bring a large number of NYC commuters, tourists and what the region really needs, the attraction needed for bigger cooperations and jobs to see up shops in the region. Having a Newburgh station could be one of the most easy and direct rail connection to Stewart Airport which is going through big upgrades itself, a possible future light rail connection to the west shore line station would be very attractive. Kingston and Newburgh have a large number of NYC transplants and people who want to still commute to the city, but the options aren’t there for direct service. The Catskills are surpassing the Hamptons as a NYC vacation getaway deatination and while it may be too far for a daily commuter run, weekend trains up there could be very successfuL. As I understand it, the new TZ bridge has room left on it for a rail line, connecting the line at nyack where it crosses over 87 to the bridge would connect the line to the Hudson line and into grand central, as the PJL already provides service to NYP, although a connection to NYP could possibly be made where the river line crosses under the NEC and into the new gateway tunnels if they ever get built. You can also have interesting possibilities with a stop in Hihkand to connect to SUNY New Paltz or a stop that connects with the walkway over the hudson. In years past this idea wasn’t feasible with Conrail or CSX but with CSX being so willing to sell off rail lines and if this ever gained enough political steam, it would make for a much needed and very effective passenger line. I suppose this is generated more towards the needs of NYS in general and not necessarily and Amtrak issue, but this is an important topic for the state nevertheless.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby Noel Weaver » Mon Apr 30, 2018 10:00 am

There is absolutely no way this will happen. This line is a very important freight route and no railroad management in their right minds will ever allow passenger trains on it. I was surprised that CSX even allowed the Amtrak specials last fall.
Sorry, reserved for freight.
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Re: New York State Expansion Thoughts

Postby superstar » Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:51 pm

ryanov wrote:With Amtrak warning about potentially suspending service past Poughkeepsie (I am guessing heading into, not out of, NYC?), expansion seems a little less likely.

Say what now? This is news to me. Any details?
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