Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

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Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby theWatusi » Tue Nov 17, 2009 7:53 pm

The improvements will address 16 bridges to allow double-stack trains on 25 miles of existing track near Hunting Park Avenue in North Philadelphia. The route extends to near Wayne Junction, through Olney, and then into the Northeast, said Bill Goetz, a CSX vice president. Trains now run through Montgomery and Bucks counties on a route that accommodates fewer trains and has lower capacity.


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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby QB 52.32 » Wed Nov 18, 2009 9:57 am

This sounds like part of CSX's efforts to clear their route running along the eastern seaboard for domestic doublestack and comes on the heels of a similar project in the Washington DC/Maryland area, including the VIrginia Ave. tunnel in DC. I have not heard of anything involving the Howard St. tunnel in Baltimore, however (or maybe it already has 20'6"+ clearance?). It would make sense since it would respond to NS's Crescent Corridor project aimed to clear from the New Orleans and Memphis gateways across the south and up into the Northeast. If CSX were not able to fully clear their route along the eastern seaboard, then they'll have to resort to an alternative route via Cincinnati but limited to serving the "western" southern states and lower Mississippi River valley, or lose a big competitive advantage to NS in the south-northeast lane. Gaining the capability to doublestack 2 domestic high-cube containers in this lane for either carrier is a big strategic move and will lead to growth from the conversion of traffic from over-the-road to rail between these two regions.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Wed Jan 20, 2010 1:38 pm

So the CSX enlargement of the clearances on the Trenton Line through Philly has begun, with work surrounding CP NICE. Apparently they have removed the southern-most track which they will lower by about 5ft. They apparently-according to a worker I asked this morning-will also be lowering the other main track that approaches from the west that connects to NS' Harrisburg line and goes to CP Belmont and ultimately CP Vine or the "High Line". These two tracks come together to form a single track that goes under SEPTA's mainline out of Wayne Junction. That portion of the project-lowering under Wayne Junction-will supposedly be the hardest part of the project, as there is not a lot of room to build a new track while leaving the original line in place to serve traffice, as CSX has done in other places such as Rhawn Street in NE Philly. They are also building a retaining wall along the tracks to prevent houses from falling down the embankment. According to the worker I spoke to today they will be working onthis project for about 6 months.
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Note the track removed in the far left. This is one of the tracks to be lowered. The track in the center will also apparently be lowered after the 1st track is finished. Note the covered signals on the mast to the left.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Wed Jan 20, 2010 1:53 pm

IMAGE_077.jpg
Retaining wall to be installed in trench in immediate foreground. Trackless roadbed to left of that. Track to left of empty bed is currently in use, but apparently will be lowered in later stages. Took photo of signal mast from the Wissahickon Ave bridge visible ahead.
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IMAGE_074.jpg
Septa bridge under which tracks to be lowered ahead. Going off to left is "The Blue Line" connecting track to Septa mainline; CSX Lansdale locals use this track. Note that trackless roadbed has been lowered to retaining wall trench depth up ahead.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby Chtorr00 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 1:43 am

Thanks for the pictures - and please keep them coming as this project progresses.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby NegativeApproach » Thu Feb 18, 2010 4:56 pm

The old Bergen Tunnel in Jersey City was recently taken out of service, but the workers I talked to said something about falling rocks, not clearance. They also said it would be out for about six months.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby Steve F45 » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:43 pm

the tunnel/national docks in jersey city are beeing worked on for clearence. Its all part of the liberty corridor.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby Chtorr00 » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:33 am

How are Maryland and Delaware doing with their double-stack clearances? Are clearances OK through the National Gateway?
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Feb 22, 2010 12:52 pm

Some photos of the work:
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From Jan. 21st 2010: Note the crews are removing one of the tracks that used to run through the area. A retaining wall will be built on either side of the roadbed. The remaining track-as well as the one already removed on the far left-will be lowered to allow doublestacks. Photo taken from Fox Street Bridge. Large building in background is former Budd plant. While they built railcars in Philly, I believe the building in view made only car parts.
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Another view from Fox Street bridge looking west, towards Tastykake factory. Note the severed rails of the first track removed that is to be lowered. Further up line can see track used to service Tastykake factory. Train is approaching in distance.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Feb 22, 2010 1:50 pm

More from Jan 21st, 2010:
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:42 pm

From Feb 9, 2010:
002.jpg
Retaining wall is forming
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby SEPTAR3kid » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:51 am

Are there any plans for work on the Phladelphia Sub to allow for doublestacks? Also, has it ever been considered to make the philly sub double track or is that just not practical/needed?
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Jul 19, 2010 12:32 am

Are you talking about the B&O? If so that line is already double stack capable; has been since the late 90's. I have a magazine article from a railroad magazine (not TRAINS, R&R or Railpace) showing them enlarging clearances in Darby. The work was done as part of the original clearance enlarging work done in the mid-90's to allow double stacks into PA across the Pennsy mainline. The reason double stacks currently don't use the line is because they have no place to go; clearances through Howard Street Tunnel in Baltimore prohibit stacks from traveling up and down the B&O.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Jul 19, 2010 1:06 am

Here are some recent pics of the project. For the past couple of months the work has focused on the building of the retaining wall and drainage ditches along the roadbed. However, recently I noticed that it appeared they had begun paving the lowered roadbed of the track they had removed; in a previous enlargement project (at Rhawn Street in NE Philly) this was done just prior to the laying of the ballast and installation of the new track.
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Re: Improvements to allow for doublestack trains in Philly

Postby jslader » Mon Jul 19, 2010 1:25 am

013.jpg
To the right of the track in this photo is now paved. The drainage work, at least in this stretch also appears to be pretty much done. Will try to post new pics this week.
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