Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

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Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Mon Jun 14, 2010 3:07 pm

Hello everyone, this past weekend Amtrak has been replacing the crossovers at the north end of Penn interlocking with the new switch going in this weekend on 1 River. This will continue on next weekend as well to replace the switch on 4 River. With the only passable track (4 River) being fouled during periods of the day with the Switch Exchange System track cars, trains had to run over the Berrys track in front of Zoo tower (the Berry track is only 10 mph until you get to the K ladder on one end or Manuta interlocking on the other), and down the 36th street connection in 30th street station. The 36th street connection is the trackage the Harrisburg trains use to access the Harrisburg line. Both saturday and sunday, I had to run the Berrys both ways, but it felt strange for me on Sunday as I had to run Acela 2254 over there. There will be heavy track work in Philly coming up at the south end of Penn interlocking replacing all or most of the switches on the Walnut Street ladder and vicinity. When I find out more, I will post on here.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby strench707 » Mon Jun 14, 2010 6:27 pm

So when they replace the switches are they going to be altering the overall track schematic at all or are they just replacing existing switches?

Thanks

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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby NellieBly » Tue Jun 15, 2010 1:17 pm

Well, there used to be two "Berry Tracks"; sounds like one has been removed. At least they left the wire up.

Zoo is one of those wonderful places where you can seemingly get from anywhere to just about anywhere else. I've been out of 30th Street and down the Belmont Branch to the Reading, for example.

Please do let us know what is planned in the way of track work. I can't really see how Amtrak could do much in the way of realignment of 1 River and 4 River.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby adamkrom » Tue Jun 15, 2010 3:43 pm

deleted
Last edited by adamkrom on Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Tue Jun 15, 2010 4:23 pm

There is only 1 Berry track. The other was ripped out over a year ago. Also I don't think anything will get realigned with the trackwork, just replaced.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby Jersey_Mike » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:14 am

The other Berry track wasn't ripped out, it was just taken out of service. Also ZOO is fine just the way the PRR designed it thank you very much. There are more important projects to burn capitol budgets on.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby adamkrom » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:43 am

I am deleting my post. Zoo is not set up the way the PRR designed it. Amtrak has made extensive changes and CSX/Conrail has as well. Moreover, the basic role of Zoo has changed dramatically. There are no longer large freight yards within the purview of Zoo Junction. There are no longer crack east-west trains bound for Chicago using the subway. Obviously, it was a waste of time talking about managing capacity at this critical flying junction.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby Jersey_Mike » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:29 am

I wasn't aware there was a capacity problem at ZOO. With two flat junctions at North Philly and Shore ZOO doesn't have sole claim on being a bottleneck on the route to Trenton and SEPTA isn't chomping on the bit to really increase capacity.

Anyway, shifting NEC trains to use the Berry would cause conflicts with HBG Line trains that need to hold the high numbered platforms and, if necessary, power change. You also forget that the Berry-NY/Pittsburgh subway-HBG #2 track is the reversing wye for the 30th Street terminal so again you'd be creating conflicts. The situation at Mantua and Girard is also not clear cut as ACL trains will often go out straight 1 and R8's straight 2 to ease congestion at the flat junctions. Finally remember that there is no speed differential between inner and outer tracks between ZOO and Shore and outbound MAS is already close to the 45mph mandated by the cab signal so there isn't much of a speed advantage.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby MelroseMatt » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:31 am

adamkrom wrote:I am deleting my post. Zoo is not set up the way the PRR designed it. Amtrak has made extensive changes and CSX/Conrail has as well. Moreover, the basic role of Zoo has changed dramatically. There are no longer large freight yards within the purview of Zoo Junction. There are no longer crack east-west trains bound for Chicago using the subway. Obviously, it was a waste of time talking about managing capacity at this critical flying junction.



You should have left it anyway, It was an interesting post. Refreshing break from parking garage discussions on the SEPTA forum...
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:03 am

Mike, you are incorrect. One of the Berry tracks is ripped out. The switch and signal on the zoo end is still in and the track from zoo to mantua including the switch at Mantua was all ripped out.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BoilerBob » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:10 am

What are Berrys?
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby Jersey_Mike » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:35 am

Alright, it looked like it was still in over Memorial day, but I was on the ZOO side. When did and why would they do such a thing? I have pictures of it being there in 2008.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:52 am

Jersey_Mike wrote:Alright, it looked like it was still in over Memorial day, but I was on the ZOO side. When did and why would they do such a thing? I have pictures of it being there in 2008.

I have no clue why they did it, but I'm sure they did it mid last year.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby ExCon90 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 10:58 am

The Berry tracks, so called, provide a means for a train for North Philadelphia and beyond to leave 30th St. Lower Level via the 36th St. Connection, used by Keystone trains to Harrisburg, then work its way eastward approximately the way the Pittsburgh Subway comes out (and the High Line used to) to join the center tracks 2 and 3 without involving the River Line; they are occasionally used to avoid the River Line when maintenance is being done. They have been called the Berry tracks as long as I can remember, and I have never known just how they got that name. I think there was a thread on that a while back (maybe on the PRR forum), and nobody knew then. On the subject of the south-end trackwork, for anyone who is in the area the Chestnut St. bridge is the only location I can think of in Philadelphia which provides an unobstructed view of electrified tracks below. Instead of a high barrier there is a horizontal apron extending along the south side of the bridge which permits a person standing on the sidewalk to see almost the entire Walnut St. Ladder and all the rest of it. You can also read the southbound home signals for Tracks 6 through 10, as long as the sun isn't too bright. I'm sure any reports of observed changes would be welcome.
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Re: Into Philly by way of the "Berrys"

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Wed Jun 16, 2010 11:05 am

ExCon90 wrote:The Berry tracks, so called, provide a means for a train for North Philadelphia and beyond to leave 30th St. Lower Level via the 36th St. Connection, used by Keystone trains to Harrisburg, then work its way eastward approximately the way the Pittsburgh Subway comes out (and the High Line used to) to join the center tracks 2 and 3 without involving the River Line; they are occasionally used to avoid the River Line when maintenance is being done. They have been called the Berry tracks as long as I can remember, and I have never known just how they got that name. I think there was a thread on that a while back (maybe on the PRR forum), and nobody knew then. On the subject of the south-end trackwork, for anyone who is in the area the Chestnut St. bridge is the only location I can think of in Philadelphia which provides an unobstructed view of electrified tracks below. Instead of a high barrier there is a horizontal apron extending along the south side of the bridge which permits a person standing on the sidewalk to see almost the entire Walnut St. Ladder and all the rest of it. You can also read the southbound home signals for Tracks 6 through 10, as long as the sun isn't too bright. I'm sure any reports of observed changes would be welcome.

It's called the Berry tracks because its in the Strawberry Mansion section of Philly,although actually I think the actual neighborhood is close by. I have heard that as the only explanation.
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