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 Jeff Smith
Guess I'll have to ride the bus...
Metro-North Railroad's New Canaan branch will be closed temporarily for the summer.

Service will be temporarily suspended at the Glenbrook and Springdale stations in Stamford and Talmadge Hill and New Canaan stations in New Canaan to expedite track work on the 6.2 mile branch.

The construction schedule and timeline have not yet been finalized, according to the Connecticut Department of Transportation.

  by Jeff Smith
https://connecticut.news12.com/new-cana ... o-stamford

Does anyone know where the work on the branch is taking place?
New Canaan line closed for construction, commuters have to take buses to Stamford
"This is all about improving and modernizing our rail system, increasing the safety and the efficiency of the trains, allowing the trains to go faster," said Strategic Communications Manager at Connecticut Department of Transportation Shannon Burnham.
The CT DOT says the improvements will allow trains to go 20 mph faster and get rid of the current speed restriction.
The improvements include replacing about 8,000 railroad ties, insulated rail joints and 1,600 feet of rail.
  by shadyjay
Here you go...

https://portal.ct.gov/DOT/CTDOT-Press-R ... ay-30-2023

No paywall :-) :-) :-)
This year, the Metro-North construction program includes the New Canaan Branch Line’s replacement of approximately 8,000 ties with a Pandrol fastening system, 1,600 feet of rail, insulated rail joints, and bridge timbers over the Noroton River Bridge. The MNR construction program also includes the remediation of mud spots at several locations, reinstatement of drainage along portions of the branch, reinstallation of new rail anchors, and surfacing the entire branch line.

The New Haven Line Track 5 work to lift the speed restriction includes the replacement of 830 ties, 1,200 feet of rail and bridge timbers over the Canal Street Bridge, Elm Street Bridge, and East Main Street Bridge, surfacing the entire stretch, and maintenance of the railway turnout by Elm Street.
  by Traingeek3629
It appears that most people are driving to Stamford or Darien. Some maybe even the Harlem Line.

Too bad there's a 60 minute gap in service at the tail end of the morning rush at all the Darien stops. Nothing between 8:53 and 9:52, even as #1541 speeds past Darien at 9:14.
  by Gilbert B Norman
From Hyatt Regency Old Greenwich CT--

I've observed that Peter Pan Bus Line holds the contract to provide the shuttle service.

Some ten busses are parked in a remote lot at this hotel and the drivers are staying here. One driver was "talkative". She said that some busses make all stops and some run nonstop Stamford New Canaan. When I said to this gal "Glenbrook, Springdale, Cemetery, Woodway, Talmadge Hill, New Canaan" I get "how do you know that? You're staying at the hotel so you must be from out of town". "I'm from Chicago, but I lived out here some fifty years ago".

"Good night".
  by NH2060
Gilbert B Norman wrote:From Hyatt Regency Old Greenwich CT--
Small world! I used to live not too far from there (Riverside and OG). Though oddly enough when my family lived in Riverside my dad almost always drove to Cos Cob to catch the train. Never understood why until it occurred to me how much more parking there was at CC.

The idea that there were 3 stations within 1 mile or so of each other on the NCB is bonkers. I imagine the old 4400s never got up to more than 15-20 mph through that stretch when making those stops (were they flag stops only?)

And to mention something on-topic I was surprised to see that the top speed on the stretch of track being upgraded is that low. I only rode it twice in my entire life (even though I grew up in the area..) so the last time I did I thought the train was just obeying a temporary slow order, not abiding by the regular speed limit. Raising it to 50mph will feel like riding the Green Line west of Fenway; when you think about it the NCB is basically a single track commuter rail version of the GL D branch (which ironically used to be a commuter rail and hosted the NYNH&H “Needham Loop” trains).
  by Jeff Smith
I’m not sure when Cemetery and Woodway closed. I believe Cemetery was around Hoyt and Camp between the crossings of each road. Named after the cemetery across Camp, of course. No idea where Woodway was. Talmadge Hill is right off the Merritt Old Stamford Road exit so it survived.

An incremental increase of 10 mph won’t amount to much but the track work is necessary.

What the branch needs if I haven’t already said it is a passing siding along the straight stretch south of Springdale.
  by Gilbert B Norman
From Holiday Inn- Akron West--

I sent Jeffery some photos of the "Peter Pan M-8's :wink: " at the "Hyatt Coach Yard". Perhaps he will choose to post them here.
  by Gilbert B Norman
I must say that I'm surprised that MNR, and more particularly CDOT, contracted with Peter Pan, a Massachusetts based outfit, rather than one based in CT or NY.

Now that Hyatt Regency was probably about the best set-up CDOT could find for such an operation. I've stayed at that hotel many, many a time since it opened during '86, and if "it's just a shell of what it once was" - ostensibly Four Star, but no longer offers any Food or Beverage, other than Room Service :( to a regular guest (yes, conventions and banquets) - it is as far East in Greenwich as you can go and almost into Stamford, they have that big yard for the busses, and they at least have rooms for the Drivers and I'd guess a cleaner and a mechanic.

No; this site is not a competitor of Trip Advisor; but evidently I am not alone in my thoughts regarding how this property has deterioriated. The "it's COVID" excuses are starting to wear a bit thin:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Revie ... ticut.html
Last edited by Gilbert B Norman on Tue Jun 20, 2023 6:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
  by Scalziand
PeterPan bustitutions have been a regular site on the Waterbury line the past several years when that line has seen prolonged closures for trackwork and signalling upgrades, so its nothing new for MN/CTDOT.
  by Gilbert B Norman
Point well taken, Mr. Scalziland.

I should note that the bus I took the photo of, and Mr. Smith posted at this topic, did have CT tags identified as "apportioned". I must confess, I was curious why a CT transit agency was contracting with an out of state bus operator, but obviously Peter Pan has "full-blown" intrastate operating authority within CT.
  by Jeff Smith
Looks to be done on time: NewCanaanite.com
Town: Metro-North Rail Service ‘On Track’ for Labor Day; Changes to Train Frequency Under Discussion
The New Canaan branch line has been closed since Memorial Day for track work, according to the DOT.

State officials during a July 31 update told the town that branch line restoration is still on track for Labor Day, Miltenberg said. The town had communicated the planned shutdown effectively, evidenced the fact that municipal officials didn’t receive complaints from commuters seeking information.
  by krispy
I was sitting in traffic on the Merritt this past weekend and was surprised to see TC's go south along the bridge into Talmadge Hill. This was during the weekend too. Looked like a tie crane and a regulator, couldn't recognize the others.
  by Jeff Smith
State: New Canaan Rail Line To Resume Service Sept. 2: NewCanaanite.com
State officials said Wednesday that Metro-North Railroad’s New Canaan branch line will resume service Sept. 2.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation said in a press release that service, halted since Memorial Day for track work, will resume with the 6:20 a.m. train that Saturday.

“Over the last several months, a track improvement project was underway along the line,” the press release said. “Now that the project is completed, an existing speed restriction in the Stamford area has been eliminated, allowing trains to travel 20 miles per hour faster through this section.