RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

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RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby NH2060 » Thu Apr 19, 2018 8:38 pm

This week the Regional Plan Association announced am ambitious proposal to combine the operations of all 3 commuter rail agencies into one single system. I wouldn't hold my breath though with politics, bureaucracy, and funding issues being what they are (not to mention that it may not make any sense at all):

The $71.4 billion merger would be phased in over the next few decades. The first phase calls for establishing the "Crosstown Line" to provide through-running service from New Jersey to Long Island, New York. That proposal would build on Amtrak's Gateway plan to build new rail tunnels under the Hudson River and expand New York Penn Station.

https://www.progressiverailroading.com/ ... ice--54482

For the sake of pure fantasy though what would we call this new mega-railroad? Tri-State Rail? :P
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby DutchRailnut » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:14 am

note : this is not from any accredited entity but a dreamer group, it seems all they are interested in is benefits to NJT commuters to create a crap load of river crossings.
there is no way this will happen.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby SecaucusJunction » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:16 am

An idea that makes sense, but yes, not in our lifetimes...

Please don't have NJT be in charge of it.....
I think it may be possible that NJ Transit might not be the perfect, infallible organization that most people assume it is.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby Backshophoss » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:48 pm

It was hard enough to get NJ and NY to work together(via PANYNJ )for Gateway tunnel project.
Combining 3 separate Commuter rail operations-FORGET IT!!
May have seen their material elsewhere on RR.net,one heck of a pipe dream by a "Think Tank" that has NO sense of the real world!
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby CarterB » Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:16 pm

Metro North already works with NJT on several trains/lines that originate in NY State, and end or go through NJ.
Seems to me that a tri-state rail system would make a lot of sense. PA NY/NJ already has a bi state commission.
Equipment staging, ordering, use could be enhanced. Put the politics aside ... this could benefit all tri state commuters, and even save money, if the bureaucracy doesn't waste or misspend. Worth a try.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby DogBert » Fri Apr 20, 2018 10:29 pm

Never going to happen.

Stupidest idea from RPA yet.

We don't need the port authority on steroids, and the MTA needs to clean up their own house before they can even think of getting in bed with another agency.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified Syste

Postby Jenny on a M2 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 12:58 am

I seriously can't even with this proposal.

Just can't.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby ConstanceR46 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 11:05 am

I occasionally take the LIRR PW Line into Penn.

I have never once thought that "Wow, i really want to go to Jersey from LI!" The thing with this is trying to RER-ify a system that can't work being RER-ified.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby ExCon90 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 1:31 pm

CarterB wrote:Put the politics aside ...

Therein lies the problem. Ile de France, the Paris metropolitan area, is not divided into three states; somebody decides something, and stuff gets done. Over here we seem preoccupied with whether the residents of one state benefit more than those of a neighboring state.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby johndmuller » Sun Apr 22, 2018 5:43 am

Some degree of through-running would be beneficial from an operational and equipment viewpoint, if not direct demand, interpersonal relationships between states, unions, companies, politicians, etc.

What might be feasible would be to try to get the four RR constituencies to try to move forward together on things like electric power standardization and to consider ordering stuff that was as compatible with each other's setups as was reasonably possible. In such a world, some through-running might get easy enough to make it worth while to try to tackle some of the other issues
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby RearOfSignal » Sun Apr 22, 2018 7:33 am

johndmuller wrote:Some degree of through-running would be beneficial from an operational and equipment viewpoint, if not direct demand, interpersonal relationships between states, unions, companies, politicians, etc.


Why should government funded agencies provide service for which there is limited to little demand? We can't even provide on-time clean operations for the services that are already run.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby johndmuller » Sun Apr 22, 2018 5:07 pm

RearOfSignal, you ask: (paraphrasing) "Why waste money on this if we are already losing money on lousy service?"

Well, for one thing, it might actually save some money to run 1 train back and forth between Newark and Stamford or Hempstead instead of 1 between Newark and Penn and another between Stamford (or Hempstead) and Penn. For one, you would only need that one train set; for another, you wouldn't have to screw around storing trains all day long in Sunnyside or NYP or tying up platforms reversing trains or making trips in and out of yards or into Queens just to turn them back the other way. Even if there wasn't much demand for the off-peak segment, you'd have to do something with the train anyway just to get it out of the way.

Sure there are other problems, like labor issues requiring crew swaps, qualifications, other union rules or whatever, pricing and splitting up the money between the agencies for however few through trips there might be, and finding the right equipment to work with the different power systems, but these are all solvable. Do some of this and there will be some money to be saved and some efficiency and throughput capacity to be gained. No one is going to get rich with the money saved here, but it's something better done than not.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby RearOfSignal » Sun Apr 22, 2018 7:28 pm

johndmuller wrote:RearOfSignal, you ask: (paraphrasing) "Why waste money on this if we are already losing money on lousy service?"

Well, for one thing, it might actually save some money to run 1 train back and forth between Newark and Stamford or Hempstead instead of 1 between Newark and Penn and another between Stamford (or Hempstead) and Penn. For one, you would only need that one train set; for another, you wouldn't have to screw around storing trains all day long in Sunnyside or NYP or tying up platforms reversing trains or making trips in and out of yards or into Queens just to turn them back the other way. Even if there wasn't much demand for the off-peak segment, you'd have to do something with the train anyway just to get it out of the way.

Sure there are other problems, like labor issues requiring crew swaps, qualifications, other union rules or whatever, pricing and splitting up the money between the agencies for however few through trips there might be, and finding the right equipment to work with the different power systems, but these are all solvable. Do some of this and there will be some money to be saved and some efficiency and throughput capacity to be gained. No one is going to get rich with the money saved here, but it's something better done than not.


You're trying to simplify this too much. That plan will never work with a conventional railroads, maybe MAGLEV or the air tube thing they're building in California. People who commute on trains care more about trains being on time and clean than the agency saving a few bucks (relatively) that will not be passed on to riders. Maybe you don't realize how mismanaged some aspects of the transit agencies in this area are. Making the agencies bigger will only increase the mismanagement. This is railfan dream-stuff we're talking about not real-life transportation management.

The trains go into yards for reasons. Can't tell you how many times I took train out of the yard on weekends that were never dumped and filthy, so how are we going to attempt to service them while never sending them into the yard?

Sorry not convinced.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby johndmuller » Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:25 pm

First it's a bad idea because it's a waste of money. When I suggest it could actually save a few bucks, then it's no good because the train will get dirty. You want to simplify things by talking about MagLev or California Fantasy Trains - really? Also, I'm not saying you have to merge all the railroads, just get them to try out a little working together on key runs.

Anyway, avoiding some of that, try running a Metro North train between Croton-Harmon and Stamford via Penn, rushing the West Side Access a little bit. This way it has a cleaning depot at Croton-Harmon, and only one railroad involved. If you wanted to, you could cut it back to only one State by stopping it at Portchester or New Rochelle. You''d probably need to use a dual mode with an M-8 kind of flippable shoe, but there's a route that would combine two useful routes into one train and avoid tying up resources in Penn or Sunnyside. Save a train set, keep things free and clear in the center.
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Re: RPA: Merge NJT, LIRR, and MNRR Into One Unified System

Postby RearOfSignal » Sun Apr 22, 2018 9:10 pm

This has been done already and it didn’t work!!!!! The football trains with MNR and NJT were duds, they cancelled the service and wasted money qualifying crews to move empty trains as an experiment. There was never a demand for the service, it was all political.

Besides you can’t qualify this idea of a single regional railroad by saying: (paraphrasing) ‘If you don’t count all the things that will prevent this from working, it will work great.’
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