Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby wicked » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:24 pm

I'd disagree with that. For instance, I can't think of any major roadway in the D.C. area that carries the volume of traffic that Centre Street does and is as narrow as Centre Street. Yes, you're right, 3rdrail, strong traffic enforcement would solve a lot of the issues mentioned here, but to say our streets are wide is inaccurate, IMO. YMMV.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby 3rdrail » Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:00 pm

3rdrail wrote:In general, they're much narrower elsewhere.

...and where here does it say that the streets are wide ?
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby CircusFreakGRITZ » Sun Nov 04, 2012 2:15 pm

3rdrail wrote:
CircusFreakGRITZ wrote:1) ...you are saying that having the trains there in the street will make traffic enforcement and drivers alike become more aware of the fact that trolleys cannot dodge vehicles.
2)...Second, you are saying that riders wouldn't mind how long it takes to get from Arborway to downtown.
3)... many riders would certainly mind...
4)... Again, we all need to un-bias ourselves.
5) ...Being a train buff, I am sure YOU would not mind train service that's as slow as molasses, but as a fellow train buff myself...
6)...you are looking at this in terms of "I really want to see a train running in the street because there was one before" rather than "what makes sense today?"

A bit presumptuous, wouldn't you say ?

Edit 3:52PM, date. Circus Freak, my hand just slipped and I inadvertantly pushed the "Foe" button by your name by mistake. Unfortunately, I will not be able to see your intelligently composed posts from this point on. Oh darn !

My post was intended to debate this issue, not criticize you personally. When I wrote "you", I don't mean just you, I mean anyone who may take the fact that the T removed full E service at face value. I cannot say I am pleased that there is no street-running service in JP Center but I am trying to see the issue from a holistic perspective, not just a rider's perspective. Again, I was not trying to criticize you personally. Have you seen presidential debates? It is a debate, and the candidates don't take things personally. In fact, I am not sure why you are acting like the victim here. All you seem to do is criticize others (does the MBTA online store discussion ring a bell?), then you cry foul when people argue with your own points.

But anyway, Boston is an old city and the streets are narrow. Unfortunately it would not be a simple process to widen South Huntington and Centre Street.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby CRail » Sun Nov 04, 2012 9:10 pm

It comes as no surprise to me that Paul had me searching around the page for a "like" button rather frequently as I caught up with this thread.

Firstly, the one seat ride makes up for how much slower (if at all) the streetcar would be than the 39 bus, which I debate the accuracy to that because the streetcar can unload much faster than a bus with more and wider doors decreasing dwell times, and a streetcar does not have to fight traffic to get out of a bus stop. Also, cars have to stop for a berthed streetcar, which they don't do for a bus. For the discussion, I will grant you that the streetcar will be slower.

Trip A - Current configuration:
Wait for 39, 5-7 minutes
Trip to Copley, 30-40 minutes
Walk to and wait for for GL, 50-15 Minutes
Trip to GC, 10-15 Minutes
TOTAL: 55-77 Minutes

Trip B - One Seat Ride
Wait for E, 5-7 minutes
Trip to Copley, 40-50 Minutes
Trip to GC 10-15 Minutes
TOTAL: 55-72 Minutes

The difference in time is negligible, however the convenience and comfort is drastically increased. Even if my times aren't exactly accurate, the validity of my point is not reduced. The possible increase in trip time is at least made up by not having to transfer.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby djimpact1 » Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:10 am

CircusFreakGRITZ wrote:Again, I was not trying to criticize you personally. Have you seen presidential debates? It is a debate, and the candidates don't take things personally. In fact, I am not sure why you are acting like the victim here. All you seem to do is criticize others (does the MBTA online store discussion ring a bell?), then you cry foul when people argue with your own points.

To use a phrase from some slightly younger people, EPIC post!!

I certainly agree with your earlier post about the need to separate our fandom from the reality of how things are/will be...without a dedicated ROW beyond Brigham Circle, I can't see the T being "on board" with the idea of a return to Arborway/street-running trolleys being the most efficient method of transport, especially with the articulated low-floor buses covering certain areas (like the 39 route) pretty efficiently.

I'd think in the event of a mechanical failure, I feel the T would argue the following: it'd be much more preferable to have a bus pull to the side of a street (upon such failure) & allow passengers to exit onto a sidewalk safely, rather than have a trolley sit dead in the middle of the street potentailly causing traffic/immediate multiple lane merges from autos, while passengers await officials to stop traffic to allow a de-boarding of the trolley. I'm sure the recent derailment @ Brigham Circle wasn't looked at by passing/nearby motorists as just a "minor inconvenience".
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby jbvb » Mon Nov 05, 2012 11:37 am

Having lived in JP in the PCC era, I can say that even though Green and Egleston on the El were both closer to my house, I would sometimes use the Arborway line to get home because I could stop at stores on Center St. (at that time, stores in my part of JP were small and well-armored). There was also a bus on Center St., but I never used it except when the Green Line was shut down. Having also lived near the former Watertown line, I'll add that "Kenmore, all change" is a PITA and discouraged my use of the #57 bus.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby Austin023 » Mon Nov 05, 2012 12:21 pm

I am not the least bit surprised that the line to Arborway was finally terminated, was inevitable. I recall taking the line a few times in the last few years it was in operation. Reinstating it now would likely be even more problematic due to more cars than back in the early 80s when it was suspended. I do admit it was cool having it and it is a shame that the line was cut back to Heath Street, but judging by the current conditions, some serious widening and improvements would be in order along Centre St to make it practical and that would be horrifically expensive and time consuming.
Back in the early 90s I recall that Brighton was close to successful in getting the long "suspended" A-line service back at least to Oak Sq. (Newton was vehemently against it) but that was also officially canceled and the tracks ripped out. The T has long had an anti-trolley (well on street anyway) mentality since at least the 1950s, so it would have been a little short of a miracle had Arborway actually been reinstated.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby atlantis » Thu Nov 08, 2012 9:23 am

I will agree that restoration of the Arborway line would be a tricky thing at best although, as others have said, the MBTA removed the project in a sneaky way. (IMHO) That being said, it doesn't have to mean it's dead forever or that it could not be run at all on Centre Street. For example, the city of Toronto has extensive street-running streetcars on streets that are norrower in some cases. Also, Philadelphias "Girard Avenue" line also runs on a street that's similar to Centre Street.
IMHO, law enforcement must make the CONSCIOS DECISION to enforce vehicle laws in order for it to work. But running trolleys require a lot of teamwork and cooperation, something that all too many of our leaders and transit officials in Boston are unwilling to institute.
If Boston to Cape Cod rail service occurs in 2012 I will eat a jelly doughnut dipped in tomato sauce.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby MarkB » Thu Nov 08, 2012 12:30 pm

T management had been trying to get rid of that line since the 1940s. When they finally did so, it was sneaky in the sense that they claimed they were doing repairs, but the process played out over years, with lawsuits flying all around. So it's not like they pulled the plug one day - they had a clear strategy, and rammed it home over several years.

Here's my idea - trackless trollies for South/Centre st, with those undercarriage rail wheels that pickup trucks use to run on railroad tracks. Go rubber to Heath st, and then put down the rail wheels and run right into the tunnel at Northeastern. It's genius1 ;-)
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby BandA » Fri Nov 09, 2012 1:23 am

MarkB wrote:T management had been trying to get rid of that line since the 1940s. When they finally did so, it was sneaky in the sense that they claimed they were doing repairs, but the process played out over years, with lawsuits flying all around. So it's not like they pulled the plug one day - they had a clear strategy, and rammed it home over several years.
Just like they "temporarily discontinued" the "A" Watertown.
Here's my idea - trackless trollies for South/Centre st, with those undercarriage rail wheels that pickup trucks use to run on railroad tracks. Go rubber to Heath st, and then put down the rail wheels and run right into the tunnel at Northeastern. It's genius1 ;-)
I posted something similar in http://www.railroad.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=65&t=106627&p=1099194&hilit=hyrail#p1099194. In Japan there is a confusingly named "Dual Mode Vehicle" http://gondolaproject.com/2012/03/05/techno-squabbles-and-dual-mode-vehicles-railbus-busrail/. Perhaps we should call it a "roadable trolley". It is a 28 passenger diesel bus with a "Hyrail" on the front and back, switches modes <15 sec., but uses the back rubber tires for propulsion. My idea: take a silverline dual-mode, make it PCC size w/o any articulation. Put Hyrails on the front and back like the Japanese version, but use the steel wheels for propulsion. Pretty complicated but sweet. MarkB's version would be cheaper and simpler (all-electric), but you'd have to make one of the two trolley poles retract, or offset them and merge them together when running on rail. Are the trolley wires still in place on Arborway?

Such vehicles could run Park St - Ashmont via Arborway & Mattapan, and Park St - Harvard via Watertown. Instant "Urban Ring". Loops complement the "T"s present Hub and spoke topology.

Green line trolley breakdown on B/C/E branches? Use a "roadable trolley" to drive around just the blockage.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby MarkB » Fri Nov 09, 2012 11:46 am

Not only are the wires gone from the Arborway line, but they were talking recently about getting rid of the last few poles. Evidently, the poles pollute the visual aesthetics of Centre st beyond bearing.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby 3rdrail » Fri Nov 09, 2012 12:53 pm

We should be reminded that a stroll down Centre St. has been emotionally likened to a stroll in the Valley of the Kings past the pyramids at Luxor.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby jaymac » Fri Nov 09, 2012 1:34 pm

In maintaining the thematic integrity of references to antiquity, there is Shelley's "Ozymandias" with particular reference to lines 10 and 11.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby CRail » Fri Nov 09, 2012 1:48 pm

I love that they want to make areas look more historical by removing what was historically always there.
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Re: Light Rail to Arborway Officially Dead

Postby Teamdriver » Fri Nov 09, 2012 2:21 pm

But is the Galway House still there?
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