PATCO to Glassboro?

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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rr503
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by rr503 » Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:03 am

WashingtonPark wrote: <snip>
Field tests were done after that nearly 30 year old report. I know, I was involved in them. 24tph works fine without any station stops. Add in picking up and discharging passengers and things back up terribly. You could run a lot more than 24 if you didn't care how long it took you to traverse the line and you had unlimited car equipment and turn capacity. If you want an efficient operation 24 won't work. There is a crossover west of 15th. There is barely enough room in the pocket to turn a 6 car train and you must creep up to EOT to avoid hitting the bumper block, which is an automatic work suspension. None of this really matters for Glassboro anyway. There are no plans to run those trains to Philadelphia over PATCO property. PATCO and TNJ have determined it isn't feasible. It might look good on paper but it doesn't work in the real world without a huge amount of money being spent. The Federal government hasn't even committed their share to providing service that is basically a restartup of glorified RDC service on a right of way that is already there.
I’d somewhat discount the impact of stub terminals (or in this case relays) on capacity. There are similar terminals in NYC which, with longer trains than exist on PATCO, once turned as many as 26tph. This isn’t to say that stub ops aren’t annoying, but they’re certainly operable. At any rate, a short extension of the rails wouldn’t be *that* complicated.

The fact that PATCO can’t get 24tph with stopping indicates to me the presence of a relatively serious control line problem. Unless dwells regularly stretch over 180 seconds, there’s really no good reason for a rapid transit service with decent acceleration and braking rates to be limited to 16tph...unless its signal system was not designed for high capacity ops, which seems to be the case here (?). Luckily this is a relatively simple fix — install some new IJs and rework the control lines to get station area cutbacks and you’re golden.

To the point of this Glassboro proposal in general: yes, it’s not going anywhere, and yes, it’s currently planned as a dinky. That doesn’t mean this isn’t important. Trans-river capacity will eventually be the thing that limits peak hour public transit cap in the region — especially given that PATCO is the only rapid transit way across. Understanding it’s challenges is thus key to making informed decisions about transit in the area.

I’d also argue that expansions should be made off the PATCO spine and not as stand alones, but that’s again just me.

WashingtonPark
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by WashingtonPark » Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:52 am

Big problem here is the stations are too close together. Any kind of bad weather brings a rule into place where you can't take full power due to motors tripping out. This is due to the slip slide protection to prevent flat spots on wheels. This also causes a much longer stopping distance in any kind of poor weather and requires manual operation. Due to this the blocks are required to be very long to make sure there is maximum stopping distance for safe train separation. You often can not reach 65MPH during the run between shorter distance stations. You also need to start braking before a drop in cab code so the brakes don't lock up in bad weather. 8 car trains must always be used this way because they trip out the breakers when running with full power and of course they can't be turned in the pocket at 15th which is why they're never used except on special runs where scheduling isn't that important, like the Santa Claus train during non rush hour periods. Since they just rebuilt the entire fleet I can't see them going out and purchasing all new equipment. It's much more complicated than installing some new IJs and reworking the control lines. Hopefully this is an eyeopener for people who think these trains run themselves and operators are just there to push the door buttons. You can't fully understand the complexity of this unless you've actually had a career there. "IMO Overpaid" consultants who have probably never ridden the train and usually don't bother getting information from "lowly" operations people don't always give the best analysis of what the system can realistically do on a daily basis.

rr503
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by rr503 » Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:41 pm

Wheel adhesion definitely has a negative effect on brake rates, but I'm skeptical as to the extent to which it reduces *potential* capacity. In NYC (both on the commuter railroads and on the subway), throughputs well in excess of 20 trains per hour have been achieved on tracks that are regularly afflicted with slippery rail conditions (and thus have signal systems capable of protecting against their effects); some parts of the subway have had their signal systems designed around 1.4mphps braking + safety margin with MAS assumed through stations and still manage to do 30tph. Certainly is an issue, but once again, I'm unsure as to whether this is a braking in leafy conditions issue or a PATCO operation issue.

FWIW, it was never my intention to suggest that operators or their knowledge is unimportant. I work on transit issues in NYC; the current operational crisis in this city was largely caused by exactly the sort of ignorance you describe. That said, it's equally important to challenge operating assumptions. Allowing cultures of "well we just do it this way" to build does a disservice to the fact that there is almost always someone who is doing what you're doing better than you.

Dcell
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by Dcell » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:10 am

If there is a capacity issue, couldn’t Patco just extend some existing trains past Linddnwold and vice versa in the morning? Does someone make a rail car that can operate on both third rail and catenary?

Return to Reading Company Olney Sta
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by Return to Reading Company Olney Sta » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:45 am

Dcell wrote:If there is a capacity issue, couldn’t Patco just extend some existing trains past Linddnwold and vice versa in the morning? Does someone make a rail car that can operate on both third rail and catenary?
The expansion being discussed would branch from the existing PATCO line in Camden, just east of Broadway station. So it would require additional TPH, not extending any current service past Lindenwold

JeffK
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by JeffK » Sat Apr 13, 2019 1:52 pm

Dcell wrote:Does someone make a rail car that can operate on both third rail and catenary?
Dual-source power is used on a number of systems around the world. Regionally, Metro-North operates on third rail out of Grand Central, then switches to overhead at Pelham. The MBTA Blue Line is dual-source as well. Dual-power operations also exist in the UK, and to a very limited extent in the Netherlands and on a French/Swiss line.

Some form of the technology's been around for over a century so even if no company's currently* building dual-power cars, there's plenty of background to draw from**.

* Lame joke 1
* Lame joke 2
Requiem for it's/its, your/you're, than/then, less/fewer. They were once such nice words with such different meanings...

Dcell
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by Dcell » Mon Apr 15, 2019 9:40 am

[quote
The expansion being discussed would branch from the existing PATCO line in Camden, just east of Broadway station. So it would require additional TPH, not extending any current service past Lindenwold[/quote]
Thanks for the clarification. Does this connection exist today or would it have to be built?

WashingtonPark
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by WashingtonPark » Mon Apr 15, 2019 1:12 pm

Dcell wrote:[quote
The expansion being discussed would branch from the existing PATCO line in Camden, just east of Broadway station. So it would require additional TPH, not extending any current service past Lindenwold
Thanks for the clarification. Does this connection exist today or would it have to be built?[/quote]
The connection doesn't exist and will not be built. Travel to Philadelphia will be achieved by transferring at Walter Rand to PATCO from the TNJ light rail line.

AlexC
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by AlexC » Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:00 pm

The expansion being discussed would branch from the existing PATCO line in Camden, just east of Broadway station. So it would require additional TPH, not extending any current service past Lindenwold
Let's keep the discussion on a Glassboro extension, not Lindenwold or brakes. Please move other topics to a separate topic.
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njt/mnrrbuff
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by njt/mnrrbuff » Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:23 am

The extension is going to be diesel light rail and will be operated by NJT. It has very little to do with Patco, except that you will be able to switch from Patco to the diesel light rail at Walter Rand Transportation Center.

pateljones
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by pateljones » Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:55 am

njt/mnrrbuff wrote:The extension is going to be diesel light rail and will be operated by NJT. It has very little to do with Patco, except that you will be able to switch from Patco to the diesel light rail at Walter Rand Transportation Center.
Patco is overseeing the study for future service. Patco is in charge and I see Patco officials in the newspaper stories and not the NJT officials.

WashingtonPark
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by WashingtonPark » Sun Apr 21, 2019 6:06 pm

pateljones wrote:
njt/mnrrbuff wrote:The extension is going to be diesel light rail and will be operated by NJT. It has very little to do with Patco, except that you will be able to switch from Patco to the diesel light rail at Walter Rand Transportation Center.
Patco is overseeing the study for future service. Patco is in charge and I see Patco officials in the newspaper stories and not the NJT officials.


Nevertheless, njt/mnrrbuff 's statement is correct. PATCO has let transportation officials know that they have no interest in operating this line whatsoever.

pateljones
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by pateljones » Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:06 pm

WashingtonPark wrote:
pateljones wrote:
njt/mnrrbuff wrote:The extension is going to be diesel light rail and will be operated by NJT. It has very little to do with Patco, except that you will be able to switch from Patco to the diesel light rail at Walter Rand Transportation Center.
Patco is overseeing the study for future service. Patco is in charge and I see Patco officials in the newspaper stories and not the NJT officials.


Nevertheless, njt/mnrrbuff 's statement is correct. PATCO has let transportation officials know that they have no interest in operating this line whatsoever.
Patco will be funding the construction cost of the extension.

WashingtonPark
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by WashingtonPark » Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:46 am

pateljones wrote:
WashingtonPark wrote:
pateljones wrote:
njt/mnrrbuff wrote:The extension is going to be diesel light rail and will be operated by NJT. It has very little to do with Patco, except that you will be able to switch from Patco to the diesel light rail at Walter Rand Transportation Center.
Patco is overseeing the study for future service. Patco is in charge and I see Patco officials in the newspaper stories and not the NJT officials.


Nevertheless, njt/mnrrbuff 's statement is correct. PATCO has let transportation officials know that they have no interest in operating this line whatsoever.
Patco will be funding the construction cost of the extension.
Nope. It's being funded by the 23 cent a gallon fuel tax and federal funds. It will be operated by NJT. The DRPA's in it to determine who they want to get the funds for the studies. I'll let you figure out why that is. This is a DRPA state fund handout. Since PATCO is a subsidiary of DRPA they actually don't have anything to do with it. This is Jeffery Nash's baby.

pateljones
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Re: PATCO to Glassboro?

Post by pateljones » Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:24 am

Don’t forget that No Build is an option. Any deadline for when the consultants report will be issued?

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