The Pascack Valley Line Thread

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airman00
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by airman00 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:42 pm

BVERailer wrote:Does anyone know the state of the siding in Westwood? I’ve never seen anything in it but it seems in fair condition. Was there an industry that closed down?
I believe that siding is actually in Hillsdale the next town over. I do know that siding was longer, before being cut back to where it is now. I am not sure of the history of that track, however I do remember as a kid that at least part of Hillsdale had at least two tracks running thru it. The grade crossing by the bergen county co-op garden store, had a 2 or 3 tracks sign under the crossbucks. And there was an old siding right next to the Waste Management transfer station, and that siding was just simply paved over, or part of it was anyway. Perhaps someone with more knowledge can help. FYI... I heard where the Kings grocery store is used to be a railyard.

blocksignal
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by blocksignal » Thu Jun 21, 2018 1:05 am

BVERailer wrote:
blocksignal wrote:Hi All could someone please tell me when the NS local drills on the NJT Pascack Valley Line these days? Also who are the regular customers and the customer locations for NS along that line. Thanks.

Blocksignal.
H81 comes once or twice a week on random days, and goes as far as Kuiken Brothers. You can probably catch it at Ford’s Lead at noon on weekdays

Hi thanks for the info. I had actually caught the H81 later on that afternoon 4/23/2018 Monday. Two NS Locomotives 5614 & 5610 Shoving 3 boxcars across Green Street South of Teteboro Station I believe. I am guessing that is the Ford's lead track? They were there about 2:30 PM or so that afternoon. Thanks again.

Blocksignal.

airman00
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by airman00 » Thu Jun 21, 2018 11:44 am

There was something unusual this morning in Westwood around 8:00 am, give or take a few minutes. A train stopped to pick up passengers in Westwood, with 3 engines and 20-25 cars. Their was an engine on either end and one in the middle, plus 20-25 cars. And then after that 2 additional trains came through and all this happened in a five minute or so span. Does anybody know anything about this or what happened?

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by airman00 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 5:23 pm

I gotcha! I actually didn’t see the train in question my father did and he called me to tell/ask me about it. He said he never saw a train that big before. But yeah I saw later on Twitter that it was actually two trains coupled together, one of which had two engines, hence the three engines.

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Angus202
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by Angus202 » Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:32 am

I believe that siding is actually in Hillsdale the next town over.
That's correct, the siding begins just after the line crosses the Pascak Brook, which serves as the south-eastern boundary between Hillsdale and Westwood.
I do know that siding was longer, before being cut back to where it is now. I am not sure of the history of that track, however I do remember as a kid that at least part of Hillsdale had at least two tracks running thru it. The grade crossing by the bergen county co-op garden store, had a 2 or 3 tracks sign under the crossbucks. And there was an old siding right next to the Waste Management transfer station, and that siding was just simply paved over, or part of it was anyway. Perhaps someone with more knowledge can help.
Indeed, it was a double ended siding that split from the "main" around the area of Piermont Ave. up until around the time NJT took over operations. Believe there were 4 double track crossings through town at this time. See CR 1776 heading west to Spring Valley over a double tracked Hillsdale Ave at this link https://www.flickr.com/photos/138735917@N07/29158798138.
FYI... I heard where the Kings grocery store is used to be a railyard.
Don't think it was a full-on yard, but IIRC there was a freight house and turntable across from the station back when the line terminated in Hillsdale some 100 years ago.

These days, it's just a spot for NJT MoW to clear up for the day during track work. The next closest stub is east of Essex St. which is much shorter.

DanD3815
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by DanD3815 » Fri Jun 29, 2018 10:16 am

It would be far too expensive for any government to take on, and probably not lucrative enough for private enterprise.
A commuter line into NYC wouldn’t be lucrative enough for a private enterprise? I wholeheartedly disagree. It’s a private enterprise that should be involved with an idea like the west shore line for example, as this is something government owned/subsidized agency doesn’t have the resources for compared to what’s already on their plate. A lot would need to change in the way the state of NY approaches railroads, the need is already there.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by Hawaiitiki » Fri Jun 29, 2018 2:25 pm

airman00 wrote:
BVERailer wrote:Does anyone know the state of the siding in Westwood? I’ve never seen anything in it but it seems in fair condition. Was there an industry that closed down?
I believe that siding is actually in Hillsdale the next town over. I do know that siding was longer, before being cut back to where it is now. I am not sure of the history of that track, however I do remember as a kid that at least part of Hillsdale had at least two tracks running thru it. The grade crossing by the bergen county co-op garden store, had a 2 or 3 tracks sign under the crossbucks. And there was an old siding right next to the Waste Management transfer station, and that siding was just simply paved over, or part of it was anyway. Perhaps someone with more knowledge can help. FYI... I heard where the Kings grocery store is used to be a railyard.
I grew up in Hillsdale in the early-2000's all traces of the yard and double track through the station were gone. Apparently, it was a small yard for trains not continuing to New York, then it became a German restaurant, and then it became Kings Supermarket. So goes the rumors of the children of Hillsdale.

Also, like someone else said. During my years in Hillsdale, that tiny siding was only used by NJT MOW equipment. Seemed like mostly just track cleaning equipment rather than any super heavy MOW sets. Loading gauge on that spur couldn't be very high.
Double Track, Grade Separate, and Electrify America!

airman00
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by airman00 » Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:56 pm

Anybody know why that siding thru Hillsdale was removed? With the current bi-directional service on the PVL that track would’ve come in handy as a passing siding, especially since the proposed fourth siding in Oradell was never built. Remember once you remove infrastructure it’s really hard to put back. Even the town of Westwood had a passing siding. Most towns not only had a passing siding but also a freight siding for the train station itself. It just really boggles my mind that when it comes to railroad infrastructure in particular no forward or future thinking is done. It’s always seems just easier to rip out track instead of try to keep it intact. Why?

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Angus202
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by Angus202 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:46 am

Anybody know why that siding thru Hillsdale was removed? With the current bi-directional service on the PVL that track would’ve come in handy as a passing siding
The (passing) siding was cut back when the population in the area was on a pretty sharp decline which lasted until early 2000 IIRC. Also, many of these towns must subsidize crossing repairs if they wish to have a reasonable (vehicular) ride quality over them - the minimum FRA/DOT standards for grade crossings are ridiculous low. Double the tracks = double the cost.
especially since the proposed fourth siding in Oradell was never built. Remember once you remove infrastructure it’s really hard to put back. Even the town of Westwood had a passing siding.
Passing sidings in the vicinity of Westwood and Oradell stations were removed decades prior to Hillsdale. And true, it is quite difficult to put infrastructure back into place. In the case of Hillsdale, the gates were repositioned when the siding was removed. The electronic burden of completely reconfiguring 4 crossings is substantial.
It just really boggles my mind that when it comes to railroad infrastructure in particular no forward or future thinking is done.
Again, the population along the line was in decline for roughly 20 years, ridership on the PVL was the lowest in the Hoboken Division, etc. It wasn't until the 2000s that the population was on the rise again, the decades of shifting jobs from NJ to NYC had many folks reconsidering the value of sitting in hours of traffic and paying ever rising tolls at the Hudson River crossings, and the opening of Secaucus transfer that ridership on the line saw a surge that was historically unheard of.
It’s always seems just easier to rip out track instead of try to keep it intact. Why?
Taxes are a big one. But really, we can't keep everything for all time because we may someday need it - we'd be "hoarders" as a society if we did. IMO, we have major issues with bureaucratic processes that impede and drive up cost of infrastructure improvements, and I'm not only speaking about the railroads.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by ExCon90 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 2:07 pm

I was told years ago by a PRR engineering dept. manager that the rule of thumb was that if a section of track is expected to be out of service for a year or more it's cheaper, largely due to the tax element, to tear it out and put it back later if it's needed rather than pay taxes in the interim.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by CPSK » Sun Jul 22, 2018 9:48 am

What is the possibility that the passing siding in Oradell will be built? I would think that after the years of full service on the PVL, people would have come to understand that having the siding would have provided better service north of New Bridge Landing, and not resulted in increased noise, pollution, or 100 car freight trains rumbling through.
People are so short-sited when it comes to projects like this. It's a shame that NJT didn't pursue the matter, but I guess it happened at a time when their financial situation was in decline, and no one wanted to spend the money on legal fees that would have been incurred had the matter been pursued longer.
I understand that "CP Golf" was installed, and remains just an automatic signal.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by Hawaiitiki » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:11 am

CPSK wrote:What is the possibility that the passing siding in Oradell will be built? I would think that after the years of full service on the PVL, people would have come to understand that having the siding would have provided better service north of New Bridge Landing, and not resulted in increased noise, pollution, or 100 car freight trains rumbling through.
People are so short-sited when it comes to projects like this. It's a shame that NJT didn't pursue the matter, but I guess it happened at a time when their financial situation was in decline, and no one wanted to spend the money on legal fees that would have been incurred had the matter been pursued longer.
I understand that "CP Golf" was installed, and remains just an automatic signal.
Unfortunately with NJT's financial status, just keeping proper operations on the current service levels at this point is paramount to any expansion/improvement. It always boggled my mind that this one never happened. This siding would have abutted almost zero residential property, but there is some extremely expensive real estate just across Kindermack that I'm sure spoke the loudest to get this not built.

In addition to increased flexibility/reliabilty, this siding would have allowed an all important reverse peak trip to allow reverse commuters to reach Northern Bergen county office parks and allow suburban workers and residents an opportunity to travel to NYC/Hoboken for the evening. Currently in the evening, from Hillsdale for example, despite the current sidings, there are ZERO TRAINS Hoboken bound between 4:06pm and 9:38pm. That is a huge market being missed. Same story in the morning, nothing gets to Hillsdale (Spring Valley bound) until nearly 10am.
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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by SecaucusJunction » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:36 am

I would assume reverse commuters either take the bus, or head over to the Main/Bergen.
I think it may be possible that NJ Transit might not be the perfect, infallible organization that most people assume it is.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by njt/mnrrbuff » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:22 am

The siding won’t be built for a very long time, if it ever is. NJT has other priorities to fix and those should have been fixed a while ago. While the siding would help reverse travel to some extent, remember that many of those office parks in Montvale are not in the immediate neighborhood of where the PVL passes and you would probably need a long walk from the station. The bus serves a better market along the PVL route.

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Re: The Pascack Valley Line Thread

Post by oknazevad » Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:35 pm

But no NJT buses go past Westwood. Service north if there is by Rockland Coaches, which has its issues (namely that as the smallest of the Coach USA subsidiaries in the region, they seem to get the hand-me-downs of buses, making the ride less pleasant and less reliable).
rails > roads

On second thought, let's not go to the NJ Transit Rail forum, 'tis a silly place.

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