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 District D RTC
Dear Ben L Train, (IIRC you are Mr. S.):

1 - CALM DOWN, this board is not here for instant gratification. Post a question and give us all a chance to respond.

2 - Mt. Pleasant is nestled between 5 cemetaries: Kensico, Sharon Gardens, MPWCC, Gate of Heaven, and Mt. Eden. The former Kensico station, which was located mid-way between Mt Pleasant and Valhalla stations was AT/IN the offices of Kensico/Sharon Gardens, just north of Lakeview Ave x-ing.

3 - As someone who has a few years ago worked in the office of one of the afformentioned "Marble Orchards" I will tell you that on weekdays there are usually only passengers 2 days a week or so at Mt. Pleasant. Many MANY riders get off at Hawthorne and get a taxi as there is a taxi stand there. Most of those who opt for the taxi's when asked why they didn't alight/board at Mt. Pleasant usually reply that the one-train-a-day in each direction just didn't meet their needs. Weekend ridership is a bit better account a) most people have weekends off AND b) there are 3 trains-a-day in each direction on Sat, Sun, and Hol's.

I personally think this stop would work better as a flag stop for ANY train passing the station between say 0800-1500 NORTHBOUND and say 1000-1700 SOUTHBOUND. Making it a flag stop would allow trains with no passengers to "make up a minute" and allow Cemtary passengers added flexibility.

4 - All "Special Use" stations have unusual ridership patterns. Just how many patrons do you think Shea Stadium would have during the month of February if it was serviced by a few trains?

There is a Chinese Memorial Holiday, called "Ching-Ming" (I probably butchered the spelling there) which falls in late April. During this holiday, it is not unusual for there to be 50+ riders on each of the 4-5 days of the holiday, especially on the Saturday during "Ching-Ming", that day you usually see each train stopped loading/unloading for at least 2 minutes... Many Eastern cultures still place a lot of value to "Honoring the Deceased". [A noble and worthy trait in my opinion.]

5 - Kensico station was eliminated largely because it was too close to the other stations, and was located on a slight curve.

6 - Manitou has it's daily commuter, all of whom live in the immediate area. Most morning I've been there it's about 8-10 riders. However, during the summer months, 8809, the first NB, carries 25+ pax on Sat morning.

7 - 8 - 11 - Springdale (CT) station is another one... Although there was once a seperate station for the cemetary itself, passengers wishing to visit Saint John Cemetery is a short walk away (through the back gate of Cem.). The cemetary's own directions actually include a "by train" paragraph.

12 - 16 - 64 - Any other questions, post them and WAIT for a response.

  by benltrain
calm down, calm down. just politely reiterating....

thank you to all. it seems that these four stations i mentioned get good ridership. the flags stop idea, especially for Mt. Pleasant seems like a good idea.

  by krispy
Manitou, Breakneck and AT are total blessings for the hiker crowds, especially hikers. As mentioned earlier, they will see large crowds during the warmer seasons and these are used extensively by several groups such as the Appalachian Trail Club, etc. Most of these are folks out of the City who are carless and have had their members write MNCRR in the past to keep the stations open, and the fact that MN listens at all is a tribute to that railroad. The alternative is to hike up from Peekskill or the neighboring stations and anyone who drives up 9W (?) can tell you how fun that is. I've done that several times to catch a smaller trail that starts just north of Camp Smith and have almost been clipped by truck traffic despite hugging the shoulder as close as possible.

I recommend the trip to anyone who's even slightly curious, a good one is too pick up the trail at Manitou, go north to a point just south of Fahnestock Park and then take the back roads down to Garrison. Or just walk up from Manitou and catch the view north and west of Anthony's Nose or one of the surrounding hilltops, it's one of the best sunset spots in NY, not too mention possibly the Northeast...


  by Dieter
My two cents worth here -

Who goes to the cemetery by train? LOTS OF PEOPLE.

When I lived in Manhattan 20 years ago, I regularly took a Harlem Division departure between 9:15 and 10:15 on the weekends. Only two cars could make the platform at Mt. Pleasant and it was PACKED with people laden with flowers and who knows what else. Mt. Pleasant in the AM on the weekend is a LONGER THAN USUAL stop, as many of the people are elderly, or accompanying elderly people. They fill the two cars which platform, and they take up time moving from other cars to reach the platform as well.

In nice weather, many of these people even pack picnic lunches for their near day long graveside visits. It sounds wierd, but for a lot of people, it's all they've got left, once their spouse, family and contemporarys are gone.

If you can't believe it, I couldn't believe it either, and you should probably go down there one Sunday morning and watch the action. They can go to mass in the church there, and then up the hill.

Frankly, having witnessed it for several years, I think it is a disgrace that the railway hasn't lengthened that platform to accomodate the elderly, even if this activity is confined to Saturday and Sunday. The volume of traffic then, and the time it takes them to disembark justifies the cost.

  by Tom Curtin
The following may sound as though I put it in to be humourous, but I have read this in the NY Times: the most-visited, or at least one of the most-visited gravesites in New York is Babe Ruth's at Gate of Heaven. People leave flowers, baseballs, and hot dogs (Babe's #1 culinary vice) there all the time, and there's a particularly large traffic near the end of a baseball season if the Yankees are in the pennant race. There was a great upsurge in September 2003 and 2004 when the Red Sox were in the race, with Sox fans --- remember, I am not kidding --- praying for "the curse" to be lifted. This story becomes outright remarkable when you realize that The Babe has been dead for 57 years (longer than he lived!) and almost all of today's visitors do not remember him playing ball!

  by Terminal Proceed
How does this have ANYTHING to do with railroading?
  by Tom Curtin
Forgive me . . .

  by harmon44
Well Ruth's grave is at one of the cemeteries served by the Mt. Pleasant station.

  by benltrain
why doesn't (or does) metro-north run specials for big cemetery days?

  by Terminal Proceed
Why don't you ask Metro North?
  by Tom Curtin
why doesn't (or does) metro-north run specials for big cemetery days?

I just have to ask this question: what are "big cemetery days?"
  by H.F.Malone
Um, days that one goes to a Big Cemetary?

  by Otto Vondrak
Oh boy, I think we exhausted this one. What say you folks? All in favor, say...



ps- Tom, I understood your connection- Ruth's grave-->Mt. Pleasant Cemetery---> Mt. Pleasant Station.