North-South Rail Link Discussion

Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

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Tallguy
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by Tallguy » Tue May 21, 2019 2:23 pm

Agreed
It is very frustrating to see major expenditures planned for the next few years that will either lock us into the status quo or be useless quickly.
Two that come to mind are the 200 bi-level coach RFP and the rebuild/add on the NS drawbridges, to the tune of 100mill. We need long term vision, ala GLT...

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BandA
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by BandA » Wed May 22, 2019 1:04 am

How do bi-level coaches prevent building the N-S rail link? Also drawbridges don't really impact underground stations that will be built 20 years from now.

Nasadowsk
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by Nasadowsk » Thu May 23, 2019 6:11 am

Beats me. A good chunk of the RER is underground, and they run a LOT of bilevel trains. Most of it is 25kv too, IIRC.

Was'nt the NSRL supposed to be built as part of the conditions to get funding for the Big Waste, errrrr Big Dig?

Bramdeisroberts
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by Bramdeisroberts » Thu May 23, 2019 8:06 am

BandA wrote:How do bi-level coaches prevent building the N-S rail link? Also drawbridges don't really impact underground stations that will be built 20 years from now.
Tunnel clearances, maybe? Though the only reason why clearance issues exist at NYP is that the station is serviced by hundred year-old tunnels on either side that pre-date the existence of bilevel coaches, and building the NSRL tunnels to clear a K-car would be relatively simple.

But yeah, any NSRL is nearly 20 years away at best, and even if it does get built, the T will still need the loco hauled consists and surface terminals because it just isn't cost-effective to electrify all the way to Fall River, New Bedford, Plymouth, Newburyport, Fitchburg, Rockport, Haverhill, etc and you'll still need diesel-hauled trains to the surface terminals from those far-flung locales. So yeah, even if the tunnels can't clear a K-car, it's utterly irrelevant, as the NSRL will likely involve a massive new rolling stock order anyways while in 20 years the existing K and R fleet, now 45 and 25 years old, respectively, will probably be headed to the scrapyard anyways.

CRail
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by CRail » Fri May 24, 2019 1:29 pm

How are there clearance issues with a tunnel that doesn’t exist? You don’t build something that’s not compatible with updated fleet standards.
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Tallguy
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by Tallguy » Sat May 25, 2019 2:50 pm

BandA wrote:How do bi-level coaches prevent building the N-S rail link? Also drawbridges don't really impact underground stations that will be built 20 years from now.
It doesn't prevent building the NSRL, but it does potentially push off buying EMUs to run in them. Sorry, I was using two examples, one directly related to the tunnel, one not as much..

buddydog
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by buddydog » Tue Jul 30, 2019 6:02 am

article in today's boston globe:

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2019/ ... story.html

ADMIN NOTE: added brief, fair-use quote:
Supporters of a rail link between North and South stations rallied at Boston City Hall Monday evening, cheering for lawmakers to “build the link” ahead of a City Council hearing on how the proposal would affect the city.
...
Proposed is a pair of tunnels that would run roughly a mile under the city to connect the two Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority stations.

Last year, state officials estimated the cost at $12 billion to $21.5 billion — far more than the $4 billion to $6 billion that a class at the Harvard Kennedy School came up with in 2017.
...
Last week, the Baker administration announced an $18 billion plan to fund several new and ongoing transportation initiatives, including the Green Line extension and the South Coast rail project. It includes almost $5.7 billion for the MBTA, which would pay for a major overhaul of bus routes, the purchase of low- and zero-emission vehicles, and as many as 200 double-decker commuter rail cars.

Asked if Baker supports a north-south connection, a spokeswoman pointed to comments he made during a gubernatorial debate last November.

“I think it’s important to solve the link problem, I’m just not sure if that’s exactly the way I would choose to solve it,” Baker said.

RenegadeMonster
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by RenegadeMonster » Tue Jul 30, 2019 8:47 am

Also saw a summary of this on the news this morning on NBC 10.

It Irks me that they always reference the inflated cost estimate as for how much it will cost to build the north-south link.

The coverage I saw also site the only opposition to the project is the cost it self.

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BandA
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by BandA » Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:20 pm

Is it $4B or $21B? Dukakis says only $4B, and feds will cover half, he said with confidence. Both the state and Mike Dukakis have such an excellent record for accurate estimation.

There are already two North-South rail links. The Orange Line runs from BBY to BON, and the Grand Junction train line owned by the MBTA.

How much do you want to increase the fares to cover $2B? Or the gas tax? Or the property taxes?

djlong
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by djlong » Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:45 pm

How much do you want to pay to be able to have the equivalent of TWELVE new metro/subway/rapid transit lines?

Build the NSRL and electrify at least out to 128 and run 15-minute headways and you have an ENORMOUS amount of increased capacity.

Want to run trains from Lowell (maybe Manchester NH one day) all the way to Providence? Buy some BMUs instead of putting all your eggs in the diesel basket.

This isn't rocket science!

https://www.stadlerrail.com/media/pdf/feabmu0916e.pdf

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BandA
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by BandA » Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:45 pm

NSRL is only 4 tracks, not equal to 12 new double-track lines.

I would like to pay less than One Billion Dollars.

newpylong
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by newpylong » Mon Aug 19, 2019 1:49 pm

BandA wrote:
Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:20 pm
Is it $4B or $21B? Dukakis says only $4B, and feds will cover half, he said with confidence. Both the state and Mike Dukakis have such an excellent record for accurate estimation.

There are already two North-South rail links. The Orange Line runs from BBY to BON, and the Grand Junction train line owned by the MBTA.

How much do you want to increase the fares to cover $2B? Or the gas tax? Or the property taxes?
Neither of those are effective NSRLs whatsoever.

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BandA
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by BandA » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:30 am

I give up, Orange Line is a great N-S rail link. Trip planner says 8:30AM, have to wait 8 minutes (headway is supposed to be 6 min at rush hour, whatever), 5 stops will take 20 minutes. Mr google says 12 min, but who knows.

Mr. Google says it is only 1.7 miles, and you can walk it in 36 minutes, although it shows going through the Boston Common which is probably not a good idea at 1:20AM and requires climbing the not too steep but still aerobic Beacon Hill.

If you want to fix the problem that the T is so slow through downtown that walking can be faster and bicycling is faster, you can build express tracks for the orange, green and red lines, and that would still be a better use of $$$ than building the N-S rail link. (Probably cheaper project and will serve more riders and shorten the trips for more riders).

MBTA3247
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by MBTA3247 » Tue Aug 20, 2019 5:48 am

Building express tracks for any of the subway lines would require deep-bore tunnels - just like the NSRL.
"The destination of this train is [BEEP BEEP]" -announcement on an Ashmont train.

FatNoah
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Re: North-South Rail Link Discussion

Post by FatNoah » Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:30 am

I give up, Orange Line is a great N-S rail link. Trip planner says 8:30AM...
As a daily northside CR rider that transfers to the Orange Line for a trip to Back Bay, you missed an important point. OL is a find N-S rail link...at certain times of the day. At least a couple times a week I see some poor family that got the advice to transfer to Back Bay via the OL in the morning. Getting through North Station, through down the stairs/escalator, through the tunnel, and through the fare gates is a Ninja Warrior worthy obstacle course. Just like Ninja Warrior, that only sets them up for the most difficult challenge: finding an Orange Line train that has room for people AND their luggage.

Now, outside rush hour, it works great though I typically connect to the Red Line at S. Station so I can get my choice of seat.

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