status of single track through beacon yard

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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby dbperry » Fri May 08, 2015 9:33 pm

csor2010 wrote:Returning to the topic, Curbed Boston is reporting that MassDOT is breaking ground on the New Boston Landing station next Tuesday (5/12). This is important because most of the renderings place this station smack in the middle of CP-4, which likely explains the large MOW presence there recently. This will likely move the end of double track east, though it may not eliminate the single track entirely.


Very interesting, and I think you have just solved a riddle for me. At least a year ago, and maybe two, they cut out a section of rail on the yard track directly adjacent to the single track main line, about in the middle of the yard. I could never figure out why. Ha! Just checked, you can actually see the missing rail on Google Maps Earth view, right behind 14 Wadsworth Street. Beacon Park Yard. So given your speculation above, that would be the perfect spot for the relocated (or new) crossover switch. It would extend the double track main pretty far east from the current location of CP 4, and well east of the planned location of Boston Landing station (I think). We'll see.

Also, I have always noted your observations about the difficulty of extending double track past the east end of Beacon Park. Looks like a relatively big job, any way it gets done IMHO.

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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby harshaw » Mon Jun 08, 2015 3:37 pm

http://imgur.com/NtqlgSy

On the 523 outbound we waited 8-10 minutes for an inbound train. People have said "well, the distance between the two signals is so minimal" that the track work isn't important.

Then explain the picture to me that I pulled from the live tracker website. Why were we waiting for a 15 minute late inbound train that was near watertown? Why wasn't that train held for us so we can get out of Boston. grrr
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby Backshophoss » Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:10 pm

When a route is setup in an interlocking,and the signal to proceed is accepted,you just have to wait for the other train to
get clear,or if the DS gets the OK from the inbound train to"take away" the signal(the inbound has safely stopped clear)
then an internal timer must "run down"and release to allow a new routing to setup.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby dbperry » Tue Jun 09, 2015 12:27 am

harshaw wrote:http://imgur.com/NtqlgSy

On the 523 outbound we waited 8-10 minutes for an inbound train. People have said "well, the distance between the two signals is so minimal" that the track work isn't important.

Then explain the picture to me that I pulled from the live tracker website. Why were we waiting for a 15 minute late inbound train that was near watertown? Why wasn't that train held for us so we can get out of Boston. grrr


Exactly my earlier points. Perhaps double track through Allston doesn't matter for a regular schedule (I still don't agree with that theory), but we have frequent examples like this where double track through Allston could help when things go haywire.

In this particular case, the platforms only on track 2 in newton are not the problem. The inbound train in the picture above is p524, which stops at the newtons. But the delayed outbound p523 express skips all the newtons. So if there were a double track in Allston, p523 could have stayed on track 1 from yawkey through beacon park all the way to CP 11 after auburndale. That would have left track 2 open for p524 to make the newton stops. But instead, p523 was trapped at CP3 (near yawkey) waiting for the inbound to clear through.

Obviously crossovers every mile and 9 car long high platforms at the newtons are the ideal solution. Until then, we need double track through Allston now! It should be a priority!
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby Rockingham Racer » Tue Jun 09, 2015 6:08 am

It seems that the MBTA doesn't HAVE priorities. Look at how long it's been taking to do capacity improvements on the Northside.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby dbperry » Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:29 am

According to the @MBTA_CR twitter folks, installation of double track in Allston is not scheduled to go forward (at this point). However, this is just Keolis customer service, so I'm not sure if they're 'in the loop' on exact status of everything.

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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby Rockingham Racer » Mon Aug 31, 2015 11:45 am

If it takes them as long as the double-track project on the Haverhill Line, Hell might well be frozen over.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby BandA » Mon Aug 31, 2015 2:05 pm

Should come out of the Turnpike budget as retribution payment
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby harshaw » Thu Feb 04, 2016 4:46 pm

Reason #782 why beacon yard should be double tracked.

Today on 523 the switch after Yawkey failed (that is, the train failed to switch onto the track that goes through the yard) and we ground to halt. Next, we actually went a little way under the highway on the track that now goes nowhere, waiting for an inbound to pass, reversed directions, and *then* switched back onto to the correct track. Yee-haw.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby harshaw » Thu May 19, 2016 4:28 pm

Reason #984. The other intervening reasons occurred but weren't posted.

Currently 1000 people sitting on 527 are waiting 20+ minutes for an inbound train before Beacon yard / Boston landing. Wait - they now say it is track work. Track work at rush hour? Anyway. the Harvard tracking app shows the inbound 15 minutes late. Why can't they hold these trains at the cross over in Weston until we get past Boston Landing? argh.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby Komarovsky » Fri May 20, 2016 6:30 am

I've asked myself this many times as well, Keolis has made a lot of unusual dispatching decisions as of late for trains between Weston and BP. One notable incident a month or so back was when they allowed 524 to leapfrog 522 at New Balance, because 522 was running an hour late and 524 had caught up with it.
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby Rockingham Racer » Fri May 20, 2016 7:50 am

Does Ms. Pollack use the train? Maybe she was on 524. :wink:
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby dbperry » Fri May 20, 2016 1:34 pm

harshaw wrote:Currently 1000 people sitting on 527 are waiting 20+ minutes for an inbound train before Beacon yard / Boston landing. Wait - they now say it is track work. Track work at rush hour? Anyway. the Harvard tracking app shows the inbound 15 minutes late. Why can't they hold these trains at the cross over in Weston until we get past Boston Landing? argh.


I finally got the full story on the P526-P527 problem.

It is track work, but it's a big cascading delay. The track work out west delays P526 - the inbound that is scheduled to use the single track just before P527. The larger problem is that the P526 equipment is used for train 721 on the Franklin line, which carries a big load ~847 passengers. And the way the South Station turns work, there isn't usually another appropriately sized set anywhere near South Station that can be substituted for 721 if 526 is late.

But it gets even more complicated: 721 and 723 get married together in Franklin and come back to Boston as 798. Delays to 721 (or 723) can result in hours of service problems for those crews, since they're Boston based and need to get back to Boston.

So delaying P527 for ~10-15 minutes instead of delaying P526 an additional 10-15 minutes on top of whatever delay it already has is the dispatching decision that makes more sense in the way bigger picture.

At least I think that is how it was explained to me.

Most of this should get better with the new schedule and the new structure of no interlined trains. We'll see.

The best news is that the rail destressing and tie replacement projects are well ahead of schedule and due to be completed in June. Then all the construction related delays will be done.

Also, in related news, the double tracking through Beacon Park has started, but it isn't going to go fast. There is no plan to put it into service before Boston Landing is complete, which should be late fall / early winter. The plan is to get Beacon Park double tracked and stubbed out to near Boston Landing so that when the final track configuration is completed at Boston Landing, it is a direct connection to the new double track pattern through Beacon Park.

They've been pulling all the stick rail and dismantling all the switches on the path closest to the existing main line. That is where the second track will go, with almost no changes to the path of that track (has to go up that little hill and then under the MassPike viaduct due to bridge / viaduct columns).

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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby dbperry » Fri Aug 19, 2016 10:51 am

I spoke with a senior MBTA manager about Beacon Park last night. Full write-up here:

viewtopic.php?f=65&t=84242&p=1397641#p1397641
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Re: status of single track through beacon yard

Postby harshaw » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:51 pm

The new track is in position west of Boston Landing all the way through Beacon yard, under the pike, and connected into track 2. No ballast has been laid down. It is not yet connected to track 2 on the eastern edge of Boston landing. I am not sure if the new track will be connected before Boston landing is finished. Also, hopefully track 1 = inbound and track 2 = outbound, otherwise take what I said and reverse it :)
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