Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

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Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby MBTA3247 » Sat Aug 25, 2012 9:18 pm

Does anyone have photos of the trolley loop at Reservoir that was located where the busway now is? I've only ever seen one, and it didn't really show what the area looked like back then. I'm also interested in seeing a track chart of the area from the same period.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby FP10 » Wed Aug 29, 2012 5:02 pm

Bumping this, I'm very interested too.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby jonnhrr » Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:24 am

The BSRA published a track chart of the whole trolley system in 1961, if you can get hold of one of those, it has a detail of the Reservoir layout.

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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Disney Guy » Sat Sep 01, 2012 11:34 am

Image
Photo credit: MBTA file photo, from Edward Dana, Transportation Bulletin 65, Riverside Line Extension, published by Conn. Valley Chapter, National Railway Historical Society. Ca. 1961.

Today, the inbound incline from the loop (far left) is a ramp walkway down to Reservoir Station, connecting with the platform at the east (inbound) end. The outbound incline has been removed to put in the current Reservoir short turn platform and tracks on a downgrade, reaching Chestnut Hill Ave closer to Cleveland Circle. I'm quite sure that building the busway up above included lengthening the rail underpass west of the station.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Arborwayfan » Fri Sep 07, 2012 8:02 am

When the loop in the picture was built, was it just a for turning short turns, or did it have some other purpose? Based on Disney Guy's caption it sounds like the loop also provided the connection to the Beacon Street line; am I getting that right? And that would be it, right? There weren't any street-running revenue lines left out that way by 1959, were there? Was there a bus stop up there from the beginning, also? Had there once been a trolley line similar to the current 51 bus?
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby CircusFreakGRITZ » Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:49 am

Disney Guy wrote:Image
Photo credit: MBTA file photo, from Edward Dana, Transportation Bulletin 65, Riverside Line Extension, published by Conn. Valley Chapter, National Railway Historical Society. Ca. 1961.

Today, the inbound incline from the loop (far left) is a ramp walkway down to Reservoir Station, connecting with the platform at the east (inbound) end. The outbound incline has been removed to put in the current Reservoir short turn platform and tracks on a downgrade, reaching Chestnut Hill Ave closer to Cleveland Circle. I'm quite sure that building the busway up above included lengthening the rail underpass west of the station.

I find it weird that there were two platforms, one for the loop and one for the main line. It wouldn't be fun if you were waiting for an inbound train on one platform and it arrived on the other (similar to the JFK/UMASS stop on the red line).
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Rbts Stn » Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:07 am

You'd see the outbound heading up the ramp to the turnaround, though, and that would give you the chance to move on over to the other platform.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby CircusFreakGRITZ » Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:36 am

Rbts Stn wrote:You'd see the outbound heading up the ramp to the turnaround, though, and that would give you the chance to move on over to the other platform.

That's a good point. :)
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Arborwayfan » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:13 am

It would have been much better than the two separate stations at North Station, where one would have to choose a platform and not have any way of knowing to go ot the other one.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby 3rdrail » Fri Sep 07, 2012 12:15 pm

Arborwayfan wrote:When the loop in the picture was built, was it just a for turning short turns, or did it have some other purpose? Based on Disney Guy's caption it sounds like the loop also provided the connection to the Beacon Street line; am I getting that right? And that would be it, right? There weren't any street-running revenue lines left out that way by 1959, were there? Was there a bus stop up there from the beginning, also? Had there once been a trolley line similar to the current 51 bus?


That's the Loop's primary function, and as such, it's kept open and available. A connection with the Beacon Street Line is made by a switch on the outbound Highland Branch just east of the Reservoir Yard. By taking the straight track on a left-hand curved section where this switch is located, a car is brought into the Reservoir Yard complex with access to either the Shops, Beacon St., or Chestnut Hill Ave. The reverse move is made via a crossover immediately east of this switch, bringing a car onto inbound tracks. All of Cleveland Circle (roadway) is still all street running, and has remained so since early days with the exception of the post-1959 Highland Branch interface. (I don't think that the Boston & Albany would have liked the idea very well !) Buses have ruled the roost for the 51 since the beginning of time. It's not a converted car line.

MBTA3247 wrote:Does anyone have photos of the trolley loop at Reservoir that was located where the busway now is? I've only ever seen one, and it didn't really show what the area looked like back then. I'm also interested in seeing a track chart of the area from the same period.

Do you mean the Circle, eric ? If you mean the present busway above the Highland Branch on Chestnut Hill Ave., there never were tracks up there. The reason that Reservoir is a terminal is that city limits end at the Cicle, half of which are Boston, the other half Brookline. BERy wanted to stay in the city as much as possible and anything south or east of the Circle is Brookline.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby MBTA3247 » Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:06 pm

3rdrail wrote:
MBTA3247 wrote:Does anyone have photos of the trolley loop at Reservoir that was located where the busway now is? I've only ever seen one, and it didn't really show what the area looked like back then. I'm also interested in seeing a track chart of the area from the same period.

Do you mean the Circle, eric ? If you mean the present busway above the Highland Branch on Chestnut Hill Ave., there never were tracks up there. The reason that Reservoir is a terminal is that city limits end at the Cicle, half of which are Boston, the other half Brookline. BERy wanted to stay in the city as much as possible and anything south or east of the Circle is Brookline.

No, I mean the loop where the busway now is as shown in the photo halfway up the page. And it's Derek, not Eric.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby 3rdrail » Fri Sep 07, 2012 3:04 pm

MBTA3247 wrote:No, I mean the loop where the busway now is as shown in the photo halfway up the page. And it's Derek, not Eric.

I understand what you mean now. (That is the same busway.) I think that you mean the in>outbound loop track east of, and next to the busway. That's a tough one as it didn't last long, I'd guess perhaps '59 to @ '69. I seem to recall being up there quite a bit in '71 on the busway and I believe that with some reconfiguring of the passenger entrance and exit, that basically the layout is the same now as it was then. Probably only place that you're going to find that is a 1958-59 MTA track map of new construction. Good luck.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Arborwayfan » Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:10 pm

Thanks, 3rdrail. So the loop was just a loop, and didn't connect to any street tracks up by the bridge over the Higland Branch. That makes sense. I'd forgotten the connection to the east end of the Resevoir Yard. And it also makes sense that the 51 was always a bus. (That was the kind of revenue street track I meant -- long lines heading off someplace, not the stuff in Cleveland Circle and Chestnut Hill Ave that are mostly non-revenue and pretty short. Thanks for the description!
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby 3rdrail » Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:09 pm

I believe so. The possibility exists that a divergence existed at the top of the loop, down a short distance to the Chestnut Hill Ave. side of the Reservoir Car House, but frankly, I'm not sure. That's a tough one for the documents that I, or probably, most historians have, as we tend to have a lot of info from BERY, BTC, and BTD, but not nearly as much from the MTA. Nothing to do with the organizations I suppose, just a standard change in practice over the years. The first group documented everything and put a lot of it in regular periodicals - not so much in stuff that was done in 1958, where you would think that there was more info being more recent. Your welcome and happy to help. As you probably guessed, I get a kick out of trying to find answers to this stuff myself.
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Re: Reservoir loop photos and track charts?

Postby Disney Guy » Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:01 pm

When the Highland Branch from Reservoir to Fenway was rebuilt ca 1974 for the Boeing cars, service from Riverside did a giant S turn using a temporary inbound to outbound loop track east of (inbound of) Reservoir Station, up the short turn loop outbound incline and out down Chestnut Hill Ave. to Beacon St. and the subway Outbound, the Riverside cars came up Beacon, and did a giant 360 past Cleveland Circle, up Chestnut Hill Ave. southbound, down the Reservoir short turn inbound incline, around the temporary inbound to outbound loop, and out to Riverside. The storage tracks in the upper Reservoir yard were cut to lay the temporary loop; crossings were not installed.

There was at least one post PCC instance (probably only one instance) when Riverside service went out to Beacon St. to the subway by using the present day tracks (which allow a straight shot from Beaconsfield through the new Reservoir short turn platforms and out to Chestnut Hill Ave.), by changing ends in an array of crossovers just east of the Reservoir platforms.
Last edited by Disney Guy on Sat Sep 08, 2012 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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