Discussion related to commuter rail and rapid transit operations in the Chicago area including the South Shore Line, Metra Rail, and Chicago Transit Authority.

Moderators: JamesT4, metraRI

  by byte
 
If this means the branch entry into the junction won't be single-tracked anymore come Monday, let me be the first to say: Thank god.
  by EJ&ESDM809
 
The renewing of the East and West Naperville plants has begun. They are doing major work on the switches, replacing the remaining old signal bridges with new ones, and converting from the wayside power lines to electocode through there. It looks like one of the plants will be getting new crossovers as the new signal bridge for one of the plants was laying on the ground, it had crossover signals for all three mains instead of two. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/4337969682/

Here's a shot of the construction at East Naperville, where a new cantilever signal bridge is going up. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/4337976312/

This is a shot of the work at West Naperville. A conventional new signal bridge will replace the westbound signals, while a new cantilever will replace the eastbound signals. You can see both West Naperville signal bridges and their replacements starting to go up in this shot. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/4320711113/
  by MetraBNSF
 
I noticed the new signal bridges that will go up at the West Naperville plant have a total of 6 searchlights. That's a good indication that additional crossovers will be installed at that plant. Thinking full universal crossovers will be installed at both Naperville plants.
  by EJ&ESDM809
 
One of the new signal bridges at West Naperville has six tri-lights while the other one only has five of them. I'm not sure why this would be. The new signal bridge for East Naperville has five tri-lights so they aren't going to be adding crossovers there. The new signals haven't been put up yet, but the second new support at West Naperville has been put up. It won't be long now before the new signals are cut over.
  by justalurker66
 
EJ&ESDM809 wrote:One of the new signal bridges at West Naperville has six tri-lights while the other one only has five of them. I'm not sure why this would be.
The logical answer would be no diverging route on that track in that direction (either diverging at that signal or an advance signal for the next signal location). The direction with six lights would have diverging routes on all tracks (again, either there or at the next signal). This is assuming this is three track territory with a pair or single tri-light above each track.
The new signal bridge for East Naperville has five tri-lights so they aren't going to be adding crossovers there. The new signals haven't been put up yet, but the second new support at West Naperville has been put up. It won't be long now before the new signals are cut over.
That sounds about right. If there is no crossover to signal (either at the location or as an advance signal) a single signal per track is enough (multiple signals are possible, just unlikely).
  by doepack
 
Plans for a third Crystal Lake station are coming together...
  by F40CFan
 
I'm not exactly sure if this fits this topic, but it is a construction project and it is along the Milwaukee West Line.

It looks like they have begun building the new line connecting along the south border of O'Hare Airport. The new line will branch off the old above Bensenville yard, pass over and then parallel the Milwaukee West Line to tower B17 where it will connect to the freight line along the west border of O'Hare. This line replaces the current line that runs through the airport construction project. They've been digging and driving pilings, but there is not much to show for it yet.
  by justalurker66
 
Another project that may be of interest ... Kensington Interlocking on Metra Electric to the South Shore (crossing CN-IC) will be getting an upgrade this year. The signals were bid out last year and NICTD (owner of the South Shore) will be opening bids on the construction project on March 19th. I have not found detailed plans but the project description is to add a second track connection to the South Shore that connects directly to Track 4 of the Electric District north of Kensington. This will affect the CN-IC rails more than anything else.

This is more than a restoration of what was taken out in the 70's. The old ladder tracks had multiple slip switches that allowed any northbound rail to connect to any northbound rail (and vice versa) and was at a narrower angle than the current CN-IC diamonds. The new second track will also bypass Kensington station.
  by doepack
 
F40CFan wrote:I'm not exactly sure if this fits this topic, but it is a construction project and it is along the Milwaukee West Line.

It looks like they have begun building the new line connecting along the south border of O'Hare Airport. The new line will branch off the old above Bensenville yard, pass over and then parallel the Milwaukee West Line to tower B17 where it will connect to the freight line along the west border of O'Hare. This line replaces the current line that runs through the airport construction project. They've been digging and driving pilings, but there is not much to show for it yet.
By your description, this sounds like a relocation of UP's Milwaukee sub (ex-CNW new line). Did you notice any speed restrictions on Metra while riding through here?
  by F40CFan
 
No speed restrictions, he just lays on the horn and we blow through. They do have a temporary crossing of the tracks for trucks and a guy in a hardhat doing crossing guard duty.
  by metraRI
 
Not sure if this would be considered a 'construction' project, but under Metra's future bid's is an item for 'Complete On-Board Video Filming of Metra's Rock Island and Southwest Service Districts'... I wonder what that entails, and why they need to spend over $10,000 to accomplish this.
  by justalurker66
 
metraRI wrote:Not sure if this would be considered a 'construction' project, but under Metra's future bid's is an item for 'Complete On-Board Video Filming of Metra's Rock Island and Southwest Service Districts'... I wonder what that entails, and why they need to spend over $10,000 to accomplish this.
Most likely a camera system to monitor passengers inside of the trains. NICTD installed a system that put cameras in each of their cars plus a camera in each cab to show the line ahead. Per the description given for NICTD's system, the cameras can be viewed wirelessly from outside of the cars by their police force. Metra RI & SWS would not have cabs on most cars so perhaps two cameras in each half of the passenger cars?

Having security cameras may help cut down on vandalism and help with prosecution of any crimes. A wireless system like NICTD's would help with any live situation to show what is happening *now* inside the car.
  by lstone19
 
doepack wrote:
F40CFan wrote:I'm not exactly sure if this fits this topic, but it is a construction project and it is along the Milwaukee West Line.

It looks like they have begun building the new line connecting along the south border of O'Hare Airport. The new line will branch off the old above Bensenville yard, pass over and then parallel the Milwaukee West Line to tower B17 where it will connect to the freight line along the west border of O'Hare. This line replaces the current line that runs through the airport construction project. They've been digging and driving pilings, but there is not much to show for it yet.
By your description, this sounds like a relocation of UP's Milwaukee sub (ex-CNW new line). Did you notice any speed restrictions on Metra while riding through here?
Huh? The "New Line" was relocated farther south in the southwest corner of O'Hare just a year or two ago. While Google only has a 2007 photo that doesn't show it, I was able to get Bing (birds-eye view) to show part of it. You need to start south of Irving Park Road, then scroll north to get it to show the start of the relocation but after you scroll even farther north, it switches to an older photo. This latest relocation starts just north of Irving Park Road. Maybe it was only temporary pending an even more extensive relocation.
  by F40CFan
 
That's the one, and now its getting relocated again, farther south, along the Milwaukee West line.
  by EJ&ESDM809
 
I was wondering what all the construction on that line above Bensenville Yard was, well I guess that explains it.

BNSF is now putting the East Lisle crossovers that were removed a few years ago back in, preparing for the next phase of the Belmont underpass project. No more work has been done at Naperville, but I'd expect the new signals there to be put up very soon and cut over shortly afterward. It looks like the old signals will remain up at East Lisle as the signal bridges were left intact after the crossovers were removed and the bottom interlocking signals never were taken down.

One interesting thing is that BNSF is putting the new cantilevers for the EBCS West Naperville and the EBCS East Naperville in front of the old signal bridges, so it'll be interesting to see how BNSF cuts those two over without interfering with the engineer's vision of those signals. The new signal bridge for the WBCS West Naperville is behind the old one like usual so that won't be a issue there. The two new bridges themselves for West Naperville are sitting by the Children's museum parking lot while the new one for East Naperville is off to the side of the access road just east of Loomis Street.
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