North-South Rail Link Discussion

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North-South Rail Link Discussion

Postby Myke Romeo Angel » Fri Jun 01, 2007 11:21 pm

I was just wondering what is the status of that project... I was looking at an old issue of Railpace Magazine & it said that it would have two tracks running through the tunnel & that was back in 98-99 so I was wonder what happened....

Once that happens will they connect the north lines with the south lines... (The same as SEPTA did with their tunnel project)...

If anyone could add any insight that would be great...
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Postby MBTA3247 » Fri Jun 01, 2007 11:33 pm

The status of the North-South Rail Link is that it has yet to be designed. Even if it does happen, it'll be decades before construction starts.
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Thanks....

Postby Myke Romeo Angel » Fri Jun 01, 2007 11:36 pm

MBTA3247 wrote:The status of the North-South Rail Link is that it has yet to be designed. Even if it does happen, it'll be decades before construction starts.


Thank you for clearing that up..... If & when it does happen i wonder if they'll do eletrification to North Station....
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Postby CRail » Sat Jun 02, 2007 1:01 am

MBTA3247 wrote:The status of the North-South Rail Link is that it has yet to be designed. Even if it does happen, it'll be decades before construction starts.


It won't be decades, I don't understand why people think in the 10's of years. If everything took decades we'd still be waiting for the Silver Line to BEGIN. The rail link has been canned, they'd rather have parks and culture museums than transportation. So everyone can keep complaining that the evil T doesn't have a connection, but when push comes to shove, that green monster (once referred to as the Berlin Wall which was a structure built by the Soviet union to trap non-communists in the communist territory) had to be replaced by green, and trees and beauty, instead of making the land useful.

There will be no North/South Rail Link, the people don't want it, they bitch and complain that they aren't getting the service, but when they have the opportunity to get it, they pass it up. They'd rather sit on a park bench surrounded by traffic.
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Postby midnight_ride » Sat Jun 02, 2007 7:58 am

I don't think it was really a choice between rail link and park-- the plan as I understand it, was to put any N-S rail link underground, and that slurry walls for a rail tunnel were constructed during the big dig for a possible future N-S rail link project.

But I think the park was going to be there either way...
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Postby Ron Newman » Sat Jun 02, 2007 1:45 pm

I doubt you'd find one person in a thousand to support a surface-level rail link, where the parks are now being built. A streetcar maybe, but certainly not a link for Amtrak and MBTA commuter trains.
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Postby TomNelligan » Sat Jun 02, 2007 3:36 pm

There was never any serious proposal for a surface rail line... the Ted Kennedy's Mother Greenway was always the plan for the land under the Central Artery. And as others have written, there's no money for a rail lnk at the moment and no prospect for money in the foreseeable future. Since electrification of MBTA commuter service would also be required, it will be very, very expensive.
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Postby Epsilon » Sat Jun 02, 2007 4:32 pm

TomNelligan wrote:There was never any serious proposal for a surface rail line... the Ted Kennedy's Mother Greenway was always the plan for the land under the Central Artery. And as others have written, there's no money for a rail lnk at the moment and no prospect for money in the foreseeable future. Since electrification of MBTA commuter service would also be required, it will be very, very expensive.

Would all MBTA service have to use the tunnel? Both South Station and North Station are stub-ended, so they couldn't be used in a through-routed system, (like Reading Terminal in Philly) but it would be possible to keep them as surface terminals for non-electrified lines (would CSX even allow electrification of Framingham-Worcester, for example?)
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Postby Mr.T » Sun Jun 03, 2007 1:45 am

It wouldn't be necessary to electrify the full system. The cheapest option for electrification would probably be to install third rail in the tunnel and use dual-mode locomotives for through trains. Any non-through trains could use the existing surface terminals and locomotives. However, the tunnel should be designed for easy installation of catenary in case they ever do a full electrification. Unfortunately, none of this will happen any time soon.
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Postby redline43 » Sun Jun 03, 2007 9:41 am

Why couldn't you use dual-mode locos that used overhead catenary?
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The Big Dig(Boondoggle) and MBTA Commuter Rail

Postby MACTRAXX » Sun Jun 03, 2007 3:08 pm

Everyone: I can not help but wonder what would could have been accomplished with the money squandered on cost overruns and waste on the Big Boondoggle project-could we have indeed gotten a unified-like SEPTA in Philadelphia-Commuter Rail system had the connecting tunnel been constructed? We can all speculate about things like run through service - Providence to Rockport as an example. But what happened with the Big Dig was not getting much of any mass transit benefits in favor of auto commuters. What was needed was someone watching the money spent and calling them on it when need be. I seem to remember that the Federal Government tightened up subsidy strings after the Big Dig mess-and rightfully so there. On a related note-NJT is looking at a new dual-mode locomotive operating under wire-the MBTA should watch these developments closely. My two cents here-MACTRAXX
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Postby CRail » Sun Jun 03, 2007 7:58 pm

Ron Newman wrote:I doubt you'd find one person in a thousand to support a surface-level rail link, where the parks are now being built. A streetcar maybe, but certainly not a link for Amtrak and MBTA commuter trains.


That's what I'd like to see. I'm not talking about through service. I don't really think there would be too much demand for it, unless Amtrak ran some Acela Regionals to Portland, which would require all that electrification stuff. The biggest complaint is that you can't get on one train to make the connection. You have to make 2 connections to get to South Station unless you use back bay, which just makes Boston look ever so desirable. That corridor would be perfect for a modern looking Light Rail line (I'm picturing some European Light Rail lines) going through the greenway, which it could share with a park through most of it. This method is clean and efficient, pleasing to the eye and solves your connection problem, why this was not done is beyond me... oh wait I remember, this is Boston.
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Postby MBTA3247 » Sun Jun 03, 2007 8:24 pm

Epsilon wrote:(would CSX even allow electrification of Framingham-Worcester, for example?)

By the time electrification becomes a possibility on the Worcester Line, CSX won't own it anyway, so their opinion on the matter wouldn't be worth squat (except in regards to overhead clearances).

redline43 wrote:Why couldn't you use dual-mode locos that used overhead catenary?

You can, but as far as I know you have to stop at either end of the catenary to raise/lower the pantograph. With a third rail you can switch over on the fly.
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Postby sery2831 » Sun Jun 03, 2007 9:17 pm

Well you can change to catenary on the fly, but I dont know about doing it with a diesel. Metro North does it on the New Haven Line and the CTA used to do it on the Skokie Swift.
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Postby ags » Sun Jun 03, 2007 9:31 pm

If Boston ever finishes building another tunnel connect the two parts of the silver line, couldn't they just make another branch of the silver line to serve as a N-S link? I really don't know the cost but they'd need to build another portal out of the South Station under. Just have that go to surface streets, if possible on dedicated roadways, but then it would be non-stop to North Station. Wouldn't that be sufficient for a single-mode link?

(Yes I know this is a RAIL board, but we need to be realistic, not idealistic.)
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