Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

  by benltrain
it would make no sense whatsoever, as there are a small number of trains. electrification to poughkeepsie would be a better use of money.

  by DutchRailnut
Different Budget, Poughkeepsie is MTA money.
Danbury is 100% CDOT money.

  by benltrain
good point! is CDOT more electrification-oriented

  by DutchRailnut
CDOT is full of plans but no money to execute the plans, and with the budget being dominated for years to come to pay for the M-8's there will only be plans, and nothing more.

  by the missing link
this topic was brought up before. mentioned was that the mu's don't have the traction to make the hill in inclement weather or fall leaves. would it make more sense to have locomotive hauled trains as the new haven did? two 2 car sets like the new cannan dink passing halfway for more frequent service? just some ideas. yes the cost would be a major issue,but what about actual feasibility? as a local i think it's a disaster whats being done to rt. 7,not just to the environment. it will only bring more traffic and accidents with the nature of people "pushing the envelope" as bad as they do already. remember the tanktruck that blew up last winter? how high does the price of gas have to go to get people to appreciate what they have(the D&N)? unless they have common sense to commute to new york(lots of people drive anyway), the attitude is who cares,only poor people ride trains.

  by benltrain
considering the current ridership levels on the danbury branch, i don't think that anybody cares that much about route 7's status (including its environment)

  by DaveP
What about current ridership levels on the branch? And how does that relate to widening projects on Route 7?

I realize this branch was once electrified-Was it 1962 when the NH "pulled the plug"? As for CDOT-electrified thru service W and E of New Haven is more a priority am I right? MACTRAXX

  by benltrain
DaveP wrote:What about current ridership levels on the branch? And how does that relate to widening projects on Route 7?
sorry, I mean to say it seems many more people do care about route 7 than the underused Danbury branch. i don't believe electrification is necesarry, because of these low ridership points.

people don't care about the environmental advantages of the train. this is what i think i meant, albeit a bit irrelevant.


  by DaveP
benltrain wrote:sorry, I mean to say it seems many more people do care about route 7 than the underused Danbury branch. i don't believe electrification is necesarry, because of these low ridership points.
Care to enlighten us on Danbury Branch numbers? Or are you just assuming the numbers are low?

  by benltrain
personal observation in addition to reports from other railfans who i talk with or whose websites i visit.

  by the missing link
the commuter trains going in and coming out are pretty full. the important aspect in selling the public on transit is the single seat ride. the shuttles serve a public need the local bus cant provide, but i don't see where both services are integrated. the shuttles run half full at the very most, most other times about 15 -35 people with about a dozen between intermediate stops. no hard data, just my observation.

  by Noel Weaver
It is not correct to state that one type of equipment can't make the grades on the Danbury Branch. Anything can run that line provided that it is in
decent or OK shape and all systems working. The two times that I had trouble on that branch were both with wet rail and FL-9 power, once with a
pair with no sand in leave season in the late fall and the other time with a single FL-9 with a grounded traction motor so it was running on three
traction motors, on that one we got as far as Wilton but the engine would not sufficiently load to get us around the curve just north of Wilton Station
and when we tried to use all four motors, we got immediate ground relay action so we had to wait for a GP-9 from Danbury to tow us up the hills to

As for MU's, any New Haven MU whether one of the old green ones in the winter time or a 4400 the rest of the year basically had no problems making the trip on this line in either direction. After the wires were killed and the Budd RDC cars took over the shuttles, we still had very little trouble with them. I remember going to Danbury one evening with either the 43 or the 47, can't remember which, and one engine kept shutting down. The engine died leaving Wilton bound for Danbury so I kept going and made it out of Wilton and also up the hill from Branchville to Topstone with a slight loss of time but we kept moving and made it all the way to Danbury.

Having said all of the above, I will further say this, the wires should never have been pulled down but they were. At this point, it would not really make sense to put them back up although if the demand increases to a point where much more service is needed, I think it would justify putting the wires back up.

This line really needs a decent CTC type signal system with cab signals more than anything else.
Noel Weaver

  by the missing link
so if the wire was up, would a 2 car m? dink be practical?some of the existing poles unfortunately are rotted at the base and will have to go. a signal system like the upper harlem/wassaic extension would be great. how much does it cost metro north to set a new catenary pole, somehow 200 million dolars to redo the wire seems steep.
  by Tom Curtin
Mod Note: Combining a couple historical threads about studies about extending MN/commuter service north of Danbury.
Original Subject: Gov. apprives plan for New milford-NY passenger service

Check this out.

http://news.newstimeslive.com/story.php ... Type=Page2

I will be amazed --- as I would guess a lot of you would --- if this comes off exactly as described. I mean, I can't picture there being any market, either now or in the future for service every 30 min through the day (in addition to the infrastructure, i.e., single track, not supporting such frequency). That kind of grandiosity simply won't come off. But service originating at New Milford has been an excellent ides for a while
Last edited by nomis on Sat Feb 22, 2020 8:50 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Danbury northward commuter studies
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