Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Discussion relating to the past and present operations of the NYC Subway, PATH, and Staten Island Railway (SIRT).

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Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Postby hrfcarl » Tue Aug 07, 2007 11:52 am

IIRC, one of the Cross Harbor Tunnel proposals was to make use of the SIRR North Shore line with the tunnel connecting St. George to the 65th Street Yard/LIRR Bay Ridge line in Brooklyn. There was the possibility of making the tunnel large enough for freight & subway tracks, so SIRT could connect with N & R subway line. Will all the development that has taken place on Staten Island, how much of the SIRR North Shore ROW exists if this option was to proceeded?
Last edited by Jeff Smith on Mon Feb 22, 2016 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Thread repurpose
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Postby Tom V » Sun Sep 30, 2007 10:45 am

The idea of routing freight trains across Staten Island's North Shore and then on to Brooklyn was dropped very early on, the Cross Harbor Freight Tunnel's current plan is for a single or double rail tunnel from Jersey City to Brooklyn.
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Re: Staten Island RR N.Shore ROW.

Postby Terrapin Station » Tue Oct 09, 2007 12:06 pm

hrfcarl wrote:...Will all the development that has taken place on Staten Island, how much of the SIRR North Shore ROW exists if this option was to proceeded?

I believe much/most/all of the ROW is still available.

From here: http://www.statenislandusa.com/news.html

North Shore Railroad Study
Feasibility Study of the North Shore Railroad Right-of-Way commissioned by Borough President James Molinaro.
Funded by:
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ)
Prepared by:
URS Corporation

Download PDF file -24 MB
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Postby jtunnel » Tue Oct 09, 2007 12:58 pm

There was talk at some community board meetings of turning the ond SIRT North Shore into some sort of light rail operation similar to the River Line run by NJT. They might have even funded a study of the possibility.

It takes over an hour for the bus to make its way from west to the ferry terminal. The B&O did the same trip in about thirty minutes

As for a return of freight operations, that's up to others to figure out.
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Postby n2cbo » Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:59 pm

I heard rumblings at the Port Authority of NY/NJ (I sit on an advisory committee) that they may be interested in running (or funding) some sort of passenger service from NJ to the Ferry Terminal in the future (just one of many ideas discussed to ease auto traffic and rush hour overcrowding on PATH to lower Manhattan).
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Postby Norb » Thu Jan 31, 2008 9:35 pm

Run NJ passenger trains via Staten Island North Shore to St George?

I heard that was proposed over 40 years ago as one of the alternatives to the Aldene Plan which then rerouted the Jesey Central mainline trains at Cranford to the Lehigh Valley RR tracks through Roselle Park, Union and Hillside to Newark Penn Station where commuters could transfer to the PATH since they wanted to discontinue ferry service between NYC and Jersey City.

Somebody who obviously missed the Ferry ride proposed re-routing the Jersey Central mainline trains at Cranford to the single track through Roselle and Linden via the Arthur Kill vertical lift bridge to Staten Island North Shore line to the St. George Ferry Terminal.

Some Staten Island Commuters take a bus that goes via Goethals Bridge, NJ Turnpike and Lincoln tunnel to get to Manhattan quicker than via Veraznno Bridge, Brooklyn Battery tunnel or via bus or train to St George and half hour ferry ride.
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Postby Norb » Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:38 am

If the Port Authority of NY/NJ had any foresight back in the early 1960's when they planned the Verazznno Bridge, they could have built a rail line on the lower level on the VZ bridge and on the center of the Staten Island Expressway to the Arthur Kill lift Bridge (built in 1959).

This would have provided another "New York Connecting Railroad" link to Brooklyn and Long Island which would have relieved truck traffic through the Holland Tunnel and East River Bridges (bypassing lower Manhattan).
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VZ Bridge

Postby MR. NIGHT TRAIN SHOW » Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:29 pm

They wanted too but at the time the subway cars used then would not be able to climb the grade of the bridge.
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Public Hearing on SIRT North Shore Operation

Postby UpperHarlemLine4ever » Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:44 am

In Monday's (4-19-10) New York Post there was a small article about a public hearing that the MTA will hold tomorrow (4-22-10) regarding the now defunct North Shore Line of the SIRT. Haven't they had hearings about this in the past and nothing has happened?
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Re: Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Postby Jeff Smith » Mon Feb 22, 2016 4:35 pm

Gonna hijack me a thread here and repurpose it. I was searching DMU's for an LIRR topic, and came across this:

http://web.mta.info/mta/planning/nsaa/p ... Report.pdf

Anyway, the whole report I'm sure is interesting for service restoration, so digest it, and feel free to regurgitate (LOL) your opinions on the feasibility of restoration!

3.7 Diesel Light Rail (DLRT), St. George to West Shore Plaza – Long List
3.7.1 Modal Characteristics
On an alignment similar to the Electric Light Rail (LRT) St. George to West Shore Plaza Alternative, the Diesel Light Rail (DLRT) Alternative would operate diesel powered light rail service using Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) vehicles on two new tracks. The new tracks would extend west along the former North Shore ROW from the existing St. George Terminal to Arlington; and south along South Avenue between Cable Way to a terminus at West Shore Plaza. As shown in Figure 6, this alternative would include the full 15 stations as described in Section 3.2.1. All the stations would be ADA compliant. The
stations are typically spaced one-half to one mile apart.

DMU vehicles are self-propelled light rail vehicles powered by a diesel engine. The articulated vehicle would be 103 feet long with a 65% “low-floor” area. DMU vehicles have a capacity to carry 240 passengers including light standees and have two doors on each side of the vehicle. DMU vehicles have a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour. All platforms would be low-level. The center platforms would be 185 feet long and 22 feet wide. Due to structural constraints at Port Richmond and Ballpark, a narrower platform would be required. The side platforms would be 185 feet long and 12 feet wide.

Alignment and Infrastructure

Within the North Shore ROW, DMU vehicles would run on exclusive, fixed rail guideway between St. George Terminal and Arlington/South Avenue. As described in Section 3.2.1, the alignment would follow the right-of-way west from the existing St. George Terminal along the Kill Van Kull shoreline, pass through the inactive Ballpark Station, cross Jersey Street at-grade, and then enter the Atlantic Salt property before entering the Sailors Snug Harbor area.

West of Blissenbach Marina, tracks would ascend the North Shore rail viaduct through Port Richmond and descend into the cut section between Nicholas Avenue and Morningstar Road. Existing rail freight territory between South Avenue and Harbor Road is proposed to be extended 1,400 feet eastwards towards Van Name Avenue. The new passenger tracks would be placed along the south side of the ROW, and would be separated by at least 17 feet from the freight track located on the north side, without crash walls except at overhead bridge structures. The alignment would turn south from the ROW and travel at-grade on South Avenue in mixed traffic towards West Shore Plaza.

Connectivity
One of the three goals of the proposed project is to improve mobility. The DLRT Alternative would provide direct service to the Teleport and West Shore Plaza, which accomplishes a number of the objectives, like improving transit access to the Teleport, reducing travel time for linked, Manhattan-bound trips, and reducing transfers between lines and modes. The DMU would provide a direct transfer connection to the NYCDOT Staten Island Ferry and NYCT Staten Island Railway at St. George Terminal for all routes with St. George termini.

Operations & Service Plan

The travel time between West Shore Plaza and St. George Terminal would be 21 minutes with the DLRT Alternative. Service from West Shore Plaza to St. George Terminal would be designed to meet every Staten Island Ferry departure as well as every Staten Island Ferry arrival. DLRT service would operate 15 minutes during peak hours, 30 minutes during off-peak hours, and 60 minutes overnight. Ten vehicles would operate during peak hours and service would be provided 24 hours. Fare policy would be proof of payment system and the fare would be the same as MTA NYCT. Proposed service to the Ballpark Station would operate on game days only.
Next stop, Willoughby
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Re: Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Postby Backshophoss » Tue Feb 23, 2016 12:54 am

There's a freight operation running on the remains of the north shore main to Bayway(CRSA)from Arlington yard.
Seperate ROW or shared with DLRT operation?
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Re: Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Postby Jeff Smith » Tue Feb 23, 2016 9:14 am

Sounds to me like it's separate tracks. But I don't think this is going anywhere anytime soon. Just interesting to see what's on the table.
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Re: Staten Island Railway (SIRT) North Shore Restoration

Postby SlowFreight » Mon Mar 21, 2016 11:10 am

Interesting that they'll consider DMU but took freight/passenger right off the table.

I thought the best way to get capacity would be to build a twin-bore freight/passenger tunnel from St. George to Brooklyn 65th Street, and 2 more bores for SIRT, then build double-track across the old North Shore for LIRR/Amtrak/NYA. I guesstimated the whole project at around $7-10B, but for a double-track freight/passenger route it would probably be around $250M less to use the North Shore than to tunnel all the way to Greenville. I figured each bore is about $170M per mile, and that the North Shore route is about a mile less tunnel, but still $100M to build a double-track line along its 5-mile route.

Since Arthur Kill is only a single-track bridge, you could probably save some $$$ by reducing the amount of double-track--but I would still think a double-track tunnel would be needed. In total I'd guess 5 bores: 2 rail, 2 transit, 1 maintenance.

Seems like it would be nice to have a Superliner- and Q-car capable route that goes from Jersey to Connecticut via SI, Brooklyn, and Queens, but local Congressional support seems to want to exclude it. I also thought you'd get more political momentum tying commuter, freight, and subway all into one mega-project. That way, it clearly benefits NYC and NYS, where the Gateway project is always viewed as a NJ requirement.
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Re:

Postby XBNSFer » Sat Apr 08, 2017 9:10 am

jtunnel wrote:There was talk at some community board meetings of turning the ond SIRT North Shore into some sort of light rail operation similar to the River Line run by NJT. They might have even funded a study of the possibility.

It takes over an hour for the bus to make its way from west to the ferry terminal. The B&O did the same trip in about thirty minutes

As for a return of freight operations, that's up to others to figure out.


My mother used to ride the SIRT trains from Arlington (end of the line) to the ferry. Took less than 15 minutes (many of the stations where "whistle stops" so they passed many of them by on any given run). The fastest bus ride (and not from all the way to Arlington station, near where my mother lived back then, but from Van Pelt Avenue (same street as the Mariner's Harbor station) was about 1/2 hour (S48, old No. 1, around 2001), and guaranteed it's worse now (traffic lights on Staten Island are multiplying like jack rabbits - every time I go down there to visit friends, it's worse). The "Castleton Avenue" bus route (S46 last time I looked, the old No. 3) took 45 minutes from my childhood home, and is probably also worse now, and again that's not from end of the line, so that's probably the "over an hour" you're talking about, and is more representative (the faster Richmond Terrace route being more "off the beaten path" for most of the residential areas since it hugs the largely industrial shoreline).
GE, not EMD, makes the best locomotives now; has for over 20 years. Get over it.
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Re: Staten Island RR N.Shore ROW.

Postby XBNSFer » Sat Apr 08, 2017 11:05 am

Terrapin Station wrote:
hrfcarl wrote:...Will all the development that has taken place on Staten Island, how much of the SIRR North Shore ROW exists if this option was to proceeded?

I believe much/most/all of the ROW is still available.

From here: http://www.statenislandusa.com/news.html

North Shore Railroad Study
Feasibility Study of the North Shore Railroad Right-of-Way commissioned by Borough President James Molinaro.
Funded by:
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ)
Prepared by:
URS Corporation

Download PDF file -24 MB


Yes, most of the ROW is intact, but some major repairs and reconstruction will be needed. In particular, some of the ROW right along the Kill Van Kull is washed out and will need to be reconstructed, the concrete viaduct between Elm Park and Port Richmond would need some repairs and rehabilitation, and of course the rest of the line, particularly the open cut, is completely overgrown and will need to have massive amounts of vegetation removed. Old stations are basically of no value, suffering years of deterioration and vandalism, as well as demolition of staircases when the overpasses over the open cut were rebuilt, so what remains will need to be demolished and removed. The old stations were too short for modern 4 car SIRT trains anyway, and the stations for the line would probably need to be reconfigured for best effectiveness.
GE, not EMD, makes the best locomotives now; has for over 20 years. Get over it.
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