Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

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: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby nomis » Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:28 am

The new high level platforms have gauntlets perminantly installed with electric lock switches on the No. 2 track, preserving the H&W aspects of freight on the line, although I haven't heard of them being used as of yet.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby gregorygrice » Sat Feb 23, 2019 10:51 am

scoostraw wrote:Speaking of platforms, I noticed that some of the platforms have gauntlet rails laid around them.

Am I correct in assuming that this is for MOW equipment only - and is temporary?


High & Wide trains.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby scoostraw » Sat Feb 23, 2019 12:22 pm

Interesting guys. Thanks.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby daybeers » Tue Feb 26, 2019 12:32 am

I took CTrail #6457 HFD to MDN on Saturday. A friend had tickets to the Flower & Garden Show at the Connecticut Convention Center, so I thought I'd go for a bit. There was another event happening upstairs, so the parking lot was full, but there were only about 15 people on the train! I have some connections at the Convention Center, so I will look into getting this changed. Directions to get there by train are on their website, in addition to Hartford's free DASH shuttle. I'm not sure why the shuttle wasn't running for the event. That was my first time taking a CTrail train; I've taken the Amtrak Shuttles countless times. The MBB Coaches are actually not bad! I love the much bigger windows compared to the Amfleets, and the seats were actually pretty comfortable. The train didn't accelerate as fast as a Shuttle does, but not much slower: we arrived in MDN two minutes early!

What's the deal with Meriden & Wallingford and their low speed limits? There was a lot of slow running coming into Meriden, which ends up making the scheduled average speed only about 21.5 mph for 7.3 miles. Wasn't that the whole reason quad gates were installed?!? I also don't understand the deal with the quiet zones. After the train left MDN, the locomotive sounded its horn. I'm not sure if I heard the speaker sounding the horn, which it apparently does for the entire time the gates are down?!? What's the point of that? That's hardly a reduction in noise.

Finally, I got to see the craziness that is Amtrak Shuttle #475 leaving HFD on Friday as a friend boarded. There were no more seats on the train, and there were about 11 UPass holders who the conductor told to wait. He went and checked with the other conductor and they eventually allowed them to board, but I heard from my friend that everyone was packed in like sardines. Wasn't that what Amtrak didn't want? I don't get it. CT needs to pony up the damn money! What can we do?

It's great that this line started and that it's doing so well, but it can be better!
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby ExCon90 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 3:10 pm

On the subject of promoting rail access to the Convention Center, I remember reading that in Dallas, when the light-rail system reached the Zoo, the Zoo advertised that it had acquired [xxxx] additional parking spaces, pointing out that visitors could then park at any light-rail station instead of driving all the way to the zoo. (Of course I don't know what the parking situation is like at stations on the NHHS line, but maybe weekends aren't too bad?)
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby Traingeek3629 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 4:01 pm

ExCon90 wrote:On the subject of promoting rail access to the Convention Center, I remember reading that in Dallas, when the light-rail system reached the Zoo, the Zoo advertised that it had acquired [xxxx] additional parking spaces, pointing out that visitors could then park at any light-rail station instead of driving all the way to the zoo. (Of course I don't know what the parking situation is like at stations on the NHHS line, but maybe weekends aren't too bad?)


Wallingford, the one I've visited the most, is never more than 2/3 full on weekdays and quarter-full on weekends.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby njt/mnrrbuff » Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:16 pm

People who live in and around Wallingford who want to go to NYC or other cities in Fairfield County along the coast probably just drive to New Haven and get their train from there. That’s probably why the parking lot at Wallingford Station might not see many cars, especially on weekends.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby Train60 » Wed Feb 27, 2019 4:09 pm

njt/mnrrbuff wrote:People who live in and around Wallingford who want to go to NYC or other cities in Fairfield County along the coast probably just drive to New Haven and get their train from there. That’s probably why the parking lot at Wallingford Station might not see many cars, especially on weekends.

The daily rate to park at the Union Station Garage in New Haven is something like $18. To park at the station in Wallingford is $2/weekday and its free on the weekends. Unless you have money to burn you park at the station in Wallingford and take the train from there.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby daybeers » Wed Feb 27, 2019 6:23 pm

Train60 wrote:
njt/mnrrbuff wrote:People who live in and around Wallingford who want to go to NYC or other cities in Fairfield County along the coast probably just drive to New Haven and get their train from there. That’s probably why the parking lot at Wallingford Station might not see many cars, especially on weekends.

The daily rate to park at the Union Station Garage in New Haven is something like $18. To park at the station in Wallingford is $2/weekday and its free on the weekends. Unless you have money to burn you park at the station in Wallingford and take the train from there.

I'm not sure about that. People are ignorant and usually think "driving is just easier" so they don't have to deal with the less frequent weekend schedule.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby GirlOnTheTrain » Wed Feb 27, 2019 8:35 pm

If they were smart they'd drive to West Haven where it's free to park on weekends instead of paying the extortionist parking garage rate in New Haven.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby njt/mnrrbuff » Thu Feb 28, 2019 7:26 am

I didn’t even think of W. Haven and I didn’t know about parking being free on weekends. While it might be a little further than New Haven from Wallingford, I’m sure that many people would do it. It’s only about a five minute longer drive from Wallingford to W. Haven Station than it is from Wallingford to New Haven Station. In the end, probably driving from Wallingford to W. Haven is the best idea, if you don’t want to take a Ctrail or Amtrak to New Haven.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby Kilo Echo » Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:17 am

Agreed. With a daily rate of $6, West Haven is also a good alternative Monday through Friday. Furthermore, the station has an enclosed waiting area as well as rest rooms.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby njt/mnrrbuff » Thu Feb 28, 2019 6:09 pm

I also believe that the same MNR trains that are designated to and from New Haven also stop at West Haven so being that W. Haven is the first stop west of New Haven, it shouldn't be too much of a hassle to get a seat. That daily parking rate at New Haven Union Station is almost the same price as an off peak one way ticket on MNR from New Haven to Grand Central.

I am a bit surprised that the speed limits are slow past the Wallingford and Meriden Stations. While there are grade crossings very close by, it's not like that should have much effect on the trains crawling through there. There are multiple spots along the SPG Line with many grade crossings where the trains do at least 79 mph. A lot of the stretch of the Springfield Line, once you clear Mill River Interlocking up until Wallingford, there are many grade crossings and the trains do at least 79. I think Amtrak goes a little faster on that stretch of tracks through North Haven. Between Berlin and Hartford, the trains go very fast along the right of way where it follows the Cttransit busway.

With the need for more Amfleet cars to run on the shuttles, hopefully that can be mitigated sooner rather than later. I just found out that the New River Excursion trains won't run anymore after this Fall. A lot of the coaches that were used on that train were Amfleet Is. Hopefully that will enable more Amfleets to be used on the Springfield Line Shuttle trains.

It seems that the Springfield Line is now a "victim of its own success."
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby gregorygrice » Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:34 am

daybeers wrote:What's the deal with Meriden & Wallingford and their low speed limits? There was a lot of slow running coming into Meriden, which ends up making the scheduled average speed only about 21.5 mph for 7.3 miles. Wasn't that the whole reason quad gates were installed?!? I also don't understand the deal with the quiet zones. After the train left MDN, the locomotive sounded its horn. I'm not sure if I heard the speaker sounding the horn, which it apparently does for the entire time the gates are down?!? What's the point of that? That's hardly a reduction in noise.



Speeds in Meriden and Wallingford have always been like that and probably won't change because the towns don't want trains flying through there.

Also "quiet zone" rules are only in affect at one crossing in Meriden, Cooper Street (3rd crossing south of MDN station) The rest are normal crossings.
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Re: Hartford Line CtDOT New Haven-Springfield - NHHS

Postby daybeers » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:23 pm

gregorygrice wrote:
daybeers wrote:What's the deal with Meriden & Wallingford and their low speed limits? There was a lot of slow running coming into Meriden, which ends up making the scheduled average speed only about 21.5 mph for 7.3 miles. Wasn't that the whole reason quad gates were installed?!? I also don't understand the deal with the quiet zones. After the train left MDN, the locomotive sounded its horn. I'm not sure if I heard the speaker sounding the horn, which it apparently does for the entire time the gates are down?!? What's the point of that? That's hardly a reduction in noise.



Speeds in Meriden and Wallingford have always been like that and probably won't change because the towns don't want trains flying through there.

Also "quiet zone" rules are only in affect at one crossing in Meriden, Cooper Street (3rd crossing south of MDN station) The rest are normal crossings.

That's silly IMO. The average speed would be so much higher if the trains didn't have to slow down so far from the Meriden and Wallingford stations.
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