• Cobb Country Transit - LRT or Commuter Rail

  • General discussion of passenger rail systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.
General discussion of passenger rail systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: mtuandrew, gprimr1

  by litz
Light rail up the W&A, then the Hook 'n' Eye to Canton is pretty much unfeasible ... too curvy, too much freight, and two railroads who likely have no inclination whatsoever to cooperate ...

Freight currently operates max speed of 45mph on the W&A up to Marietta, and 10mph on the GNRR's trackage ... and even if you rebuilt the GNRR track to perfect standards, I doubt you could get much over 20-25, and you'd need seatbelts for that.

Their best bet is new-build, and that's basically the lesser of two evils :

1) try and acquire ROW (very expensive; it's pretty much ALL developed land)
2) build down the middle of the interstate and drive 1/4th of the city nuts with the traffic jams that would create ...

Frankly, if they're gonna build down the middle of the interstate, uncap MARTA's tunnel, and just extend the NW line that was part of the original planning. Shoulda happened years back as part of the pre-olympics planning IMHO ...

'course for ANY of this to happen, the state government has to manage to actually put together some kind of realistic rail goal/plan, something that's sorely lacking (and less likely).

- litz


  by gt7348b
I think I can answer some of the questions on the LRT.

On Canton - the reason it is LRT is that it was recognized that the W&A was infeasible and in the written description it would follow the I-575 corridor, not the W&A. One thought was that the NW segment from Cumberland to the Town Center area would function more like an LRT trunk line, with trains only continuing North to Canton on a less frequent basis. It is somewhat modeled after tram-train networks in Germany (with the idea that maybe you could even use a dual mode electric/diesel LRT like Alstom produces for Canton and avoid having catenary north of Town Center area).
  by Jeff Smith
Cobb’s Department of Transportation received $1.4 million, the largest allocation in Georgia, to study a proposed rail line along the U.S. 41/I-75 corridor between Acworth and the Arts Center Station in Atlanta.
  by Jeff Smith
Not sure if I'd call this related, but it does involve Cobb:

http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/morn ... e_atl_rdup
Sixty percent of Cobb County, Ga., residents who participated in a telephone survey conducted by county officials to determine whether residents prefer to connect Cobb to Atlanta via rail, or to improve the congested Windy Hill Road and Interstate 75 intersection, said rail to Atlanta takes priority, the Marietta Daily Journal reported. Officials are trying to determine the best use for money that could be generated by next year’s voter referendum for a 10-year 1 percent sales tax to fund transportation projects in a 10-county metro Atlanta area.
  by Jeff Smith
Outrageously expensive, IMHO. I'm just not sure what the alternatives are in this area.

http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/morn ... e_atl_rdup
A proposed commuter railway from Cumberland Mall to Midtown Atlanta would cost about $1.2 billion to build, and $9.6 million more to operate each year, reports the Marietta Daily Journal, based on reports from the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority. The project is among several planning officials say could be built with money from a 1 percent sales tax voters will consider July 31, 2012.
  by Jeff Smith
More on Cobb: http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/morn ... e_atl_rdup
Cobb Board of Commissioners Chairman Tim Lee on Wednesday said he plans to cut $300 million from a proposed Cumberland-to-Midtown rail line on the TSPLOST project list and instead use the money for a bus route and road improvements, reports the Marietta Daily Journal.

Lee said he and Kennesaw Mayor Mark Mathews had decided to reroute the $300 million from the $856.5 million earmarked for the rail line, the newspaper reported. He made the comments during the 21-member Atlanta Regional Roundtable meeting.
I'm all for rail, but $1b for this line of relatively short distance? That just seems way out of wack.
  by litz
I don't know .. there are two pretty big bridges required : one over the Brookwood interchange area, and another to get it over I-285, and pretty much anywhere but the CSX rail corridor is going to cost money to buy land (all the land in the area is developed).

Is there any info on proposed routing?
  by gt7348b
There's one other bridge worth mentioning - the one across the Chatahoochee River. This crossing will involve both the Army Corps and the National Park Service. There should be a link to the proposed alignment on the Cobb DOT website dot.cobbcountyga.gov on the "Connect Cobb" button. Regarding the GRTA analysis - it was an estimate of maximum probable cost based on actual construction costs inflated to current year dollars from New Starts national averages. It also involved a 30% contingency which caused much discussion during one of the July Atlanta Regional Roundtable meetings. You can find the GRTA analysis on their website at www.grta.org and clicking "Transit Deliverability."
  by Jeff Smith
Looks like LRT to me: bisnow.com
Even If Cobb Votes To Fund Transit In 2019, MARTA Rail Is Unlikely To Follow

With the prospect of Cobb County continuing to lose out on more than a third of the region's economic development deals, leaders are looking to add a penny sales tax that could fund the massive expansion of a transit alternative. One thing is very likely: MARTA will not be that alternative.

“Heavy rail is simply not affordable,” Cumberland Community Improvement District Executive Director Tad Leithead said during Thursday's Bisnow Future of Cumberland event at the Atlanta Marriott Northwest at Galleria.
Gov. Nathan Deal recently signed a bill that creates a regional transit authority called Atlanta-region Transit Link Authority — known as The ATL — to plan and coordinate transit projects in a 13-county region that includes Cobb, Gwinnett, Forsyth, DeKalb and Fulton counties.
If not MARTA, Leithead said he envisions a mix of projects that could include rapid bus transit, flex buses and light rail in coordination with The ATL agency.
Read more at: https://www.bisnow.com/atlanta/news/nei ... um=Browser" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;