SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Discussion relating to Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (Philadelphia Metro Area). Official web site can be found here: www.septa.com. Also including discussion related to the PATCO Speedline rapid transit operated by Delaware River Port Authority. Official web site can be found here: http://www.ridepatco.org/.

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SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby zebrasepta » Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:11 pm

http://www.septa.org/service/rail/impro ... index.html
The Fleet Upgrade page states that the first ACS-64 will be at SEPTA's property around March 2018 and the last will be here around November 2018 and the first multilevel will be here around December 2019 and the last one will be here around July 2020
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby JeffK » Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:30 pm

I'm surprised they're putting dates out there for the bi-levels even though a supplier hasn't been chosen AND the SLV fiasco isn't fully resolved.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby rslitman » Mon Dec 05, 2016 3:09 pm

Let me guess - The bi-levels will only run on the Pennsy side and only as 1xxx runs that start or end at Suburban Station due to tunnel restrictions.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby ekt8750 » Mon Dec 05, 2016 3:14 pm

rslitman wrote:Let me guess - The bi-levels will only run on the Pennsy side and only as 1xxx runs that start or end at Suburban Station due to tunnel restrictions.


No?
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby silverliner266 » Mon Dec 05, 2016 3:50 pm

My understanding is that the clearance issue is on the grade between Suburban and 30th. Best guess, Trenton, Thorndale, West Trenton, and Doylestown will see bi-levels on at least one express. What will be interesting to watch is if they use them in off-peak service at all.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby NorthPennLimited » Mon Dec 05, 2016 8:16 pm

I hope the dispatcher training includes running the local train BEHIND the express train. Even when the express is running a couple minutes late.

Hopefully the train simulators teach the new engineers how to give a smooth ride. A new guy and those Silverliner V's can sometimes make for some hard station stops. Hopefully the older engineers can mentor the new guys how to operate a train with soft hands.

Here's hoping the new assistant conductors learn how to make announcements, and show a little dignity and self pride in the uniform. I can't tell you how many of these guys look like a disgrace in uniform and have a chip on their shoulder to match their appearance.

Scheduling has their work cut out for them trying to make off-peak and weekend train trips competitive with an automobile or bicycle.

Equipment shouldn't be rushed (see ROTEM / Silverliner 5 threads). But the ACS-64 has proven to work well and should be a good replacement to the beleaguered AEM-7 and ALP-44 fleet at SEPTA.

Perhaps they can hold off on the bi-level coaches and wait for multi-level MU's that come with cables to work both as MU's or trailer coaches / cab cars.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby STrRedWolf » Mon Dec 05, 2016 9:40 pm

NorthPennLimited wrote:I hope the dispatcher training includes running the local train BEHIND the express train. Even when the express is running a couple minutes late.


I'm not so sure. If the inbound express is behind the inbound local, and even taking account for switching (affecting three trains, the express and two locals, the other an outbound) will only make the inbound local late... why tell the inbound local to wait for the inbound express?
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby x-press » Tue Dec 06, 2016 12:06 pm

Oh my . . . you're talking about actually running an express AROUND a local?! Perhaps that was what NorthPenn meant and perhaps not, but I agree that is problematic on a two track line as busy as Septa's main. There are far easier express/local decisions that the dispatchers have been struggling with, particularly the past few years.

- My pet peeve (as I've mentioned in other threads) is Wayne Junction, outbound. Four tracks narrow to two on the main. You can run an express around a local there without any delay to inbound trains, and minimal to the local if it's scheduled to stop. For years, if a local has gotten there ten seconds before an express, the local is sent ahead, and the express meanders behind at 25mph for miles. One time my train (not an official express, but making fewer stops, including skipping Wayne) was even held at Wayne on track 2 while a local pulled in, stopped, discharged and crept over the turnout ahead of us. Just jaw-dropping.

- Inbound out of Glenside, it's the other extreme for the 7:58am (soon to be 8:01) inbound local, which starts at Glenside. It's supposed to wait in its siding for an express to pass, which is perfectly reasonable . . . but it's been held up to TWELVE MINUTES for the express! In that amount of time the local could have been far enough ahead that the express would never catch it, and certainly not before 4 track territory.

To be fair, these issues have not been as bad the past month or so. Could be luck, or perhaps some things are being addressed.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby zebrasepta » Tue Dec 06, 2016 5:13 pm

x-press wrote:Oh my . . . you're talking about actually running an express AROUND a local?! Perhaps that was what NorthPenn meant and perhaps not, but I agree that is problematic on a two track line as busy as Septa's main. There are far easier express/local decisions that the dispatchers have been struggling with, particularly the past few years.

- My pet peeve (as I've mentioned in other threads) is Wayne Junction, outbound. Four tracks narrow to two on the main. You can run an express around a local there without any delay to inbound trains, and minimal to the local if it's scheduled to stop. For years, if a local has gotten there ten seconds before an express, the local is sent ahead, and the express meanders behind at 25mph for miles. One time my train (not an official express, but making fewer stops, including skipping Wayne) was even held at Wayne on track 2 while a local pulled in, stopped, discharged and crept over the turnout ahead of us. Just jaw-dropping.

- Inbound out of Glenside, it's the other extreme for the 7:58am (soon to be 8:01) inbound local, which starts at Glenside. It's supposed to wait in its siding for an express to pass, which is perfectly reasonable . . . but it's been held up to TWELVE MINUTES for the express! In that amount of time the local could have been far enough ahead that the express would never catch it, and certainly not before 4 track territory.

To be fair, these issues have not been as bad the past month or so. Could be luck, or perhaps some things are being addressed.

The only way to fix this problem is for SEPTA to somehow add a 3rd track between (Fern Rock or Wayne Junction) and Jenkintown and add a couple of switches between those points

Also for the multilevels there's 3 proposals from 3 different bidders, I don't know who the bidders are but I'm pretty sure one of them is Hyundai Rotem who SEPTA really shouldn't pick
Three proposals are currently under evaluation
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby silverliner266 » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:22 pm

I'm not even sure you would need to build a third track all the way up. You could just hold locals on track 3 at Fern Rock until the express passed.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby scotty269 » Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:05 pm

silverliner266 wrote:I'm not even sure you would need to build a third track all the way up. You could just hold locals on track 3 at Fern Rock until the express passed.


Track 0
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby x-press » Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:02 pm

Extending 3-track territory to Fern Rock (linking track 1 at wayne with 0 track at fern rock) would be great, and could feasibly happen some day.

Extending it to jenkintown would be awesome, and likely won't happen.

There is plenty of much lower hanging fruit to take advantage of in the meantime, namely scheduling and dispatching.
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Re: SEPTA's Regional Rail Improvement webpage

Postby MACTRAXX » Wed Dec 07, 2016 8:55 am

Everyone:

We have had this discussion concerning a third track addition between Wayne Junction and either Fern Rock and/or Jenkintown in the past at this Forum...I do agree that addition of a third track between Wayne Junction and Newtown Junction connecting there with the 0 track through Fern Rock would be the easier of the two track addition options...

Retaining walls and fill would have to be added for the first segment beginning across from Wayne Electric Shops going towards Logan and would require switch reconfiguration at Newtown Junction to allow the new track to be routed over the Broad Street/Old York Road overpass by way of the currently unused third track routing to then connect with the 0 track into Fern Rock.

The biggest obstacle to adding a third track north of Fern Rock is the rock cut between FRTC and Melrose Park. New platform relocation and replacement would be necessary at all three stations on at least one side at Melrose Park, Elkins Park and Jenkintown. A provision for a third track can be added at Jenkintown when the station gets reconstructed along with high platforms but will no doubt increase costs for or may even delay the project with this additional work.

A third track continuous addition - even one as short as Wayne Junction to Fern Rock - could allow faster PM peak northbound express trains to pass slower local trains and allow Fox Chase trains as a good example to be able to use the added third track N towards Newtown Junction and Olney.

It would not surprise me if the Reading Trunk route between Wayne Junction and Jenkintown has more trains using two tracks then the Main Line between Overbrook and Paoli runs on four tracks.

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