Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby BandA » Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:17 pm

But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby bostontrainguy » Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:54 am

BandA wrote:But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.


Yeah, when the Grand Junction is upgraded to 40 mph (one of the options being considered - can hear the NIMBYs now!), and IF a SE leg of a wye is built during this project, the Downeaster could run to South Station saving Amtrak money and offering much better connections through Boston. It's really a once in a lifetime opportunity.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby GP40MC1118 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 1:00 pm

Still requires a backup move at North Station. No way to directly connect the Lowell mainline to the GJ connection at Swift.
Only way would be for them run via Reading.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby Rockingham Racer » Sat Jan 26, 2019 1:21 pm

Perhaps running a few DEs via Reading isn't a bad idea. The line certainly isn't saturated. It might be worth investigating running these few trains over to the Worcester line and terminate them in Springfield. Passengers destined for Boston on the trains could change to the T in Malden. It also opens up a better market for people in Reading, Wakefield, Melrose, Malden and their neighboring towns east of them.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby bostontrainguy » Sat Jan 26, 2019 2:02 pm

GP40MC1118 wrote:Still requires a backup move at North Station. No way to directly connect the Lowell mainline to the GJ connection at Swift.
Only way would be for them run via Reading.


That connection (Lowell - Grand Junction) is being built right now with the GLX.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby BandA » Mon Jan 28, 2019 2:59 am

bostontrainguy wrote:
BandA wrote:But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.


Yeah, when the Grand Junction is upgraded to 40 mph (one of the options being considered - can hear the NIMBYs now!), and IF a SE leg of a wye is built during this project, the Downeaster could run to South Station saving Amtrak money and offering much better connections through Boston. It's really a once in a lifetime opportunity.
This is a complete clean-room replacement of all the transportation infrastructure in the interchange! All you need right now is to plan for a balloon track in the basement of future parking garage & some ventilation fans. (Maybe a little more complicated but not much). Actually they also need to plan for increased highway lanes, haven't seen the drawings but I bet they aren't!!!

As for reverse-moves required at BOS & BON, perhaps just bypass one or both of those stations and stop at BBY, Kendall, where they cross the GLX, Orange & Silver Lines.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby GP40MC1118 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:53 am

There is no direct connection being built from the Lowell mainline to the Grand Jct as part of GLX or not.

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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby ceo » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:20 pm

Go look at Google Maps (here) and tell me how you're going to build an eastbound connection from the Grand Junction to the B&A mainline.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby BandA » Mon Jan 28, 2019 3:38 pm

What I am proposing, and so far I seem to be alone in this, is a balloon or loop track somewhere where Beacon Park used to be. I suppose some local trains might want to stop at West Station, wherever that will be, so I guess this loop would have to be to the west of West Station. I haven't seen the state's proposed layout, but somehow trains have to cross over or under the ground-level Mass Pike alignment. Trains obviously will have to slow down for a sharp curve.

Alternatively, you could build a curve/loop in the middle of the Charles River, with a diamond on the Boston side. That would be the best you could do if you need to add the loop after the Brighton interchange is designed.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby bostontrainguy » Mon Jan 28, 2019 4:41 pm

ceo wrote:Go look at Google Maps (here) and tell me how you're going to build an eastbound connection from the Grand Junction to the B&A mainline.


As planned the Mass Pike viaduct is going to be removed and the roadway lowered to ground level. Then the Grand Junction is going to cross over the Pike on a new bridge. If the plan instead lowers the Mass Pike one level below ground level the Grand Junction could cross over it on a NE wye bridge under the Comm Ave bridge. It would join the B&A main just north of Montford Street. There would still be a NW wye bridge as planned. It is possible.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby bostontrainguy » Mon Jan 28, 2019 6:29 pm

BandA wrote:What I am proposing, and so far I seem to be alone in this, is a balloon or loop track somewhere where Beacon Park used to be. I suppose some local trains might want to stop at West Station, wherever that will be, so I guess this loop would have to be to the west of West Station. I haven't seen the state's proposed layout, but somehow trains have to cross over or under the ground-level Mass Pike alignment. Trains obviously will have to slow down for a sharp curve.

Alternatively, you could build a curve/loop in the middle of the Charles River, with a diamond on the Boston side. That would be the best you could do if you need to add the loop after the Brighton interchange is designed.


There actually is (was) a loop around the old CSX engine house but that will soon be history or already is. Actually the Downeastern could run "Backwards" to West Station and then forward over the Grand Junction to Maine very easily since it is bidirectional.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby BandA » Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:41 am

I don't think the Downeaster would want to stop at West Station since it just stopped at BBY. West Station should be for MBTA locals.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby CRail » Tue Jan 29, 2019 9:17 pm

GP40MC1118 wrote:There is no direct connection being built from the Lowell mainline to the Grand Jct as part of GLX or not.

Perhaps not direct per se but it will certainly be possible without a reverse move when yard 10 is finished for access to BS&G post yard 8.
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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby GP40MC1118 » Wed Jan 30, 2019 1:00 am

Right...The Yard 9/10 lead being rebuilt for Pan Am.

Last I knew, there was no provisions for an interlocking to connect this track to the New Hampshire Route mainline
No.1 Track (which is ridiculous even if it was just for PAR). There are also no provisions to install proper crossing
protection at Innerbelt Road and Cobblehill Road. I can't wait for DOBO or the other others negotiating this hornets
nest. And this track would no doubt have to be brought up to passenger train standards and that includes the 4th
Iron from FX to Swift. Good luck on that.

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Re: Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

Postby CRail » Wed Jan 30, 2019 10:22 pm

Well they're already talking about sending through trains between Swift and FX unrelated to any of this. I agree with both that I don't think there will be an interlocking at (let's call it) Mystic and that such is asinine. That track has been rebuilt down to the sub-grade (as you know) and I doubt would be much of a further investment to make passenger worthy. I'd be really surprised if crossing protection wasn't put in eventually, though. Innerbelt Rd. is much to wide to stop and protect as an SOP!

I also agree with a point made above that 1.) since the area is being blown up and started over anyways it's certainly possible to make the Grand Junction hook a left and head back into down and that 2.) this is the time to do it, as the opportunity will probably not present itself again while anyone reading this is alive. I doub't they'll do it, but they absolutely should!
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