Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby DutchRailnut » Tue Jan 22, 2019 5:34 pm

If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby Tommy Meehan » Wed Jan 23, 2019 6:14 am

As one of the participants said, "This has been a long time coming." But it has always depended on East Side Access being completed and on line.
Metro-North and Amtrak have overcome their public disagreements over the Penn Station Access Project, clearing the way for a $1 billion rail plan that will open Manhattan’s West Side to Westchester County commuters for the first time...Today’s agreement calls for the Long Island Rail Road to reduce its service levels at Penn Station once the East Side project is finished to allow for more Metro-North service at Penn Station, the outline notes.

To jumpstart the project, MTA’s Metro-North committee today approved a $35 million contract with HNTB New York Engineering and Architecture for a preliminary design. The full MTA Board will vote on the contract at its meeting Thursday. And Amtrak’s board will also have to sign off on the proposal. Link
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MNR East Bronx PSA.JPG
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby SRich » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:20 am

Why not laydown a 4 track long stretch, zo Amtrak can ride with speed on the inner two and Metro North use the outside. Then make shorter blocks so trains can quicker follow up. Especially on the 2 track portions.

Is there any change that Amtrak’s empire connection also will be used by Metro North?

Why will Amtrak ride trains from Long Island?
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby Jeff Smith » Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:12 am

The ROW once accommodated 4 tracks the entire length (save Pelham Bay Bridge I think), and 6 south of 180th St (the defunct NYW&B). So there’s room for four. But I’d expect them to be to one side or the other to simplify station design, perhaps with Island platforms. I question if the frequencies would require four tracks... a third with occasional passing sidings and meets may be sufficient.

South of Hunts Point, on the Hell Gate Bridge and through Astoria, adding a track may be problematic. The Hell Gate currently only has three tracks, one of which is the Bay Ridge(?) freight track, which runs up to Pelham Bay if IIRC. Jaap do I have that right? So you have to account for CSX and P&W runs along the Branch, too. So you’re only going to get three in most places.
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby SRich » Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:18 am

I mean four tracks near the stations and the rest of the hell gate line three ore two tracks.
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby Jeff Smith » Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:22 am

As for Hudson Line access via the Empire Connection, that option was dropped years ago. IIRC the DC extension was pretty pricey, along with fleet requirements to operate in it.

I guess MNRR needs to jump on that DC extension pretty quick from Harold up to the phase break. The M8’s have only been using half of their capabilities; 12.5kv(?) catenary and under-running DC shoes. Nothing east of NH (25kv?) or over-running shoes. I think I got that right.
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby Allouette » Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:46 pm

How far is the 25Hz/60Hz changeover from Harold? An old Amtrak ETT gives it in terms of pole numbers. What are the MPs?
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Re: Metro-North Penn Station West Side Access

Postby DutchRailnut » Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:48 pm

currently the switchover is at CP gate about a mile from Harold, the third rail does not start till Harold .
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby Jeff Smith » Wed Jan 23, 2019 3:39 pm

Some ancient history (some 45+ years ago): https://www.nytimes.com/1973/06/09/arch ... f-the.html

Some interesting snips:

...
According to the proposal of the two Representatives and the Yonkers Mayor, the M.T.A. the umbrella agency that over seas operation of the city's sub ways, the Long Island and the Penn Central commuter runs in the state, would own and operate the service as interim measure pending completion of the Second Avenue subway, which is scheduled to be completed in 1980, and which is to serve Co‐op City.
...


SAS to be completed in 1980 to Co-Op City!

...
Stops would be made also at Pelham Manor and at the Parkchester development in the Bronx. Mr. Bingham said the trip from Co‐op City to Penn Station would take only 30 minutes and cost a commuter 80 to 85 cents. He said many of the Co‐op City commuters spend 90 minutes getting to jobs in Manhattan, using bus and subway, and that some pay more than 80 or 85 cents for their journey.
...


Pelham Manor is not included in this iteration (IIRC it had a station on the former NH Harlem River Branch service). No Hunts Point or Morris Park either.

...
An M.T.A. spokesman, asked if the East 63d Street tunnel for L.I.R.R. and subway trains now under construction would eventually mean more room for other trains in the tunnel to Penn Station, said that the new tunnel could not be used until a new East Side rail terminal, scheduled for completion in 1980, was finished. By that time, he said, the Second Avenue subway is supposed to be ready.
...


An East Side Rail Terminal for the LIRR! Remember that?! IIRC it was supposed to be around 2nd and 63rd, to connect to the SAS.
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby Jeff Smith » Wed Jan 23, 2019 3:45 pm

https://www.wnyc.org/story/amtrak-metro ... s-forward/

Pelham Bay Bridge replacement postponed, and track rights swap:

...
The stalemate hinged on two demands from Amtrak. One was that the MTA pay to replace the century-old Pelham Bay Bridge, which would get more traffic with the expansion. As far back as 2010 Amtrak had labeled the bridge "beyond a state-of-good-repair" and in need of more than $500 million to build a replacement. Under the agreement brokered by Cuomo, the Pelham Bay Bridge replacement would be postponed for 10-20 years.

The other sticking point was that Amtrak wanted to charge the MTA access fees for using its tracks. Now, Amtrak has agreed to give up that demand in exchange for a joint MTA and Amtrak study to look into whether Amtrak service might be expanded to Long Island.
...
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby Dick H » Wed Jan 23, 2019 4:39 pm

With Delta Dick at the helm, any agreement is subject to a last minute change.
Ask Mitch McConnell about that, as the government shutdown drags on.
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby njt/mnrrbuff » Wed Jan 23, 2019 4:48 pm

The Pelham Bay Drawbridge needs to be replaced sooner rather than later. It’s not in the best shape. Instead of allowing Amtrak to serve LI, let’s focus on upgrading the existing infrastructure on the Hellgate Line.
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby checkthedoorlight » Wed Jan 23, 2019 6:15 pm

A nagging question I keep having on this New Haven service to Penn.....right now, the regulations on ticketing are that New Haven line trains can not be used for inner-city travel. No riding between Grand Central and 125/Fordham. Are they going to modify this regulation so that customers can ride between Penn Station and the Bronx, or are these Bronx stations going to be for Westchester/CT commuting only? If they do modify it, are they going to completely do away with the regulation on the Grand Central trains as well?
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby Tommy Meehan » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:05 pm

Good question ^ But the plan has always seemed to mean riders from the east Bronx getting service to Manhattan's West Side. This is from the MTA's website page about the new service:
Provide benefits to East Bronx residents and employers by:
    Substantially reduce travel times between Manhattan’s West Side and the East Bronx, Westchester County and southern Connecticut
    introducing a convenient one-seat ride between the East Bronx and Manhattan’s West Side
Link
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Re: Metro-North New Haven Line Penn Station Access

Postby dha10001 » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:22 pm

I sure hope to hear about rolling stock plans sometime soon, or at least an acknowledgement of the need for more rolling stock. I don't buy the idea that they will be able to serve Grand Central AND Penn Station with the existing M8 fleet, even with the additional 60 units on the way. LIRR is getting a hell of a lot of new railcars dfor ESA, won't this expansion require some too? If anything, this recent Hartford Line capacity debacle should should result in an honest dialogue about rolling stock needs for his project.
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