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 John_Perkowski
So the Wall Street Journal reports M-N is going to retrofit 10 of its inbound new coaches with bars...

The bar once again will be open on the New Haven Line of the Metro-North Railroad. Bar cars, phased out in 2014, will be making a return to the line, according to people familiar with the matter.

“The Connecticut Department of Transportation has ordered 60 new train cars, and 10 of those will be retrofitted to include a bar, said one of the people familiar with the matter. State officials plan to make the announcement later this week [...]
Mod Note: This thread is solely for the 60 cars that are to be ordered, with 10 to be retrofitted into Bar Cars. Us mods will decide if the topic previously split of the Bar Cars, and the M8's in SLE are best to be handled. -nomis
Last edited by Jeff Smith on Fri Dec 09, 2016 4:57 pm, edited 3 times in total.
  by RearOfSignal
Is it April 1st already?
  by Ridgefielder
I'll believe it when I see it...
  by Backshophoss
The article is Paywalled. :( :( :(
  by pnaw10
Backshophoss wrote:The article is Paywalled. :( :( :(
There are several others that aren't... Google "new haven line bar cars" and you'll find a few articles. The gist of the news boils down to one sentence from the Connecticut Post:
According to sources, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is planning to announce next week the purchase of 60 new M8 rail cars, 10 of which are bar cars.
Full article at http://www.ctpost.com/local/article/Sou ... 215401.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  by Backshophoss
So Kawasaki is going to rebuild the M8 production line in Lincoln Ne??
or a refit of 10 cars as Bar Cars at Yonkers? CT post flips both ways. :P
If it's a refit,best to use the M8 trailer single cars for the refit.
  by DutchRailnut
so far no word from CDOT or Governor, but Just Jimbo Cameron, who has no official function as being source of story , go figure...
  by Noel Weaver
Here is a link that was on the BLE website yesterday. You should be able to read the article without restriction.

http://www.ctpost.com/local/article/Sou ... 215401.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Having read that, I still think Connecticut would do better to spend their badly needed funds on more seats and not bar cars.
Noel Weaver
  by CarterB
Bar cars belong more for the "Hamptons" crowd on the LIRR. The "Graysons" of the world.
  by Ridgefielder
CarterB wrote:Bar cars belong more for the "Hamptons" crowd on the LIRR. The "Graysons" of the world.
The New Haven bar cars-- at least in their post-1973 MTA-era-- were pretty basic affairs. Linoleum floor, plastic laminate "wood" paneling, florescent lights. Plastic banquettes along the walls between the vestibules and the car ends, bar down one side of the car between the two vestibules with an elbow-height level shelf along the other side for drinks. Not really comparable to the old LIRR "sunrise parlor car" out to the East End. By the end of their career they physically resembled rolling dive bars more than anything else.
  by eubnesby
Perhaps SLE will get M8s after all. Nice to have an unexpected new order.
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
bulk88 wrote:Looks like CT paid for a design to be drawn up already http://www.railplan.com/kawasaki-m8-commuter-cafe.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
That design has been on the books ever since the original M8 order was placed, as a livery option for the unpowered singlets on the option order. There are well-circulated PDF schematics of the layout dating back to 8 years ago...probably still archived on CDOT's website somewhere.

BTW...here's the Hartford Courant article quoting CDOT Commish Jim Redeker, which would constitute a more authoritative source than whatever drivel fell out of Jim Cameron's mouth:

http://www.courant.com/politics/hc-bar- ... story.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
The total cost of the 60 new M-8s is estimated at $200 million, funding that is expected to be considered later this month when the State Bond Commission meets. Malloy said the new cars were being purchased to accommodate an increase in ridership on the rail line. The state so far has bought 405 of the new M-8 cars, which began going into service in 2011.
Now, the hype may be all about ¡bar cars! ¡bar cars! ¡bar cars!, but the reality is that they're burying the lede about the really big development: the $200M bond for +60 supplemental M8's of fleet expansion. The bread-and-circuses aspect gets hyped way up-front so CT taxpayers are way more stoked about that fluff than they are concerned about having to shell out an extra $200M in taxpayer money in a spending-hostile environment with spending-hostile public sentiment over the state's budget follies. Potentially very shrewd of them, because those extra cars are the perma-solve for all the above-and-beyond growth that the largely replacement-level initial 405 cars didn't address. Not just SLE fleet assignments, but also keeping up with another 10 years of general growth on the New Haven Line and having something in-hand (probably not enough, but something nonetheless) to feed Penn Station Access for its first years of service. The mundane yearly growth curve in and of itself would've put them in a car shortfall before this current decade is out. +60 cars pads it well enough that they don't need to worry about augmentation at least until it's time for the 20-year midlife overhaul of the whole fleet. As a means-to-an-end concession for cleanly passing that bond bill in a budget-hostile environment, 10 of those 60 cars having to be gussied-up as bar cars is a small price to pay (so long as the individual cars don't go over-budget having the bar livery template applied). Yeah, it's somewhat empty-calorie bread-and-circuses when--as Noel points out--the need is for more seats, seats, seats. But if this is all it takes to sell the riding public on that bond for the supplemental order it accomplishes exactly that: 5 dozen more cars of seats, seats, seats. Can't much argue with the end result even if it takes somewhat of a snow job to sell that purchase on the taxpayers and their legislators.
  by nomis
Gov. Malloy Announces Decision to Purchase 60 Additional Rail Cars for Expanded Capacity on the New Haven Line
Busiest Commuter Rail Line in the Nation Continues to Experience All-Time High Ridership
http://portal.ct.gov/Departments_and_Ag ... aven_Line/

Fair use quote discarded for Press Release
Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that as the New Haven Line continues to experience all-time high record ridership numbers, the State of Connecticut will soon purchase an additional 60 M-8 rail cars to add to its recently launched, state-of-the-art fleet servicing the line, which remains the busiest commuter rail line in the nation. With each car carrying 105 seats, adding the new cars will accommodate more than 6,000 additional commuters.

"More and more, Connecticut residents are choosing public transportation to go about their daily commutes. If we want to remain competitive in the 21st Century, modernized economy in a way that attracts new businesses and creates high-skilled jobs, we must update our infrastructure and give our commuters a best-in-class transportation system," Governor Malloy. "We have witnessed what decades of underinvestment has resulted in, and we can no longer afford to sit back and let the status quo remain. This is just one of many bold steps we are implementing statewide toward making a modernized transportation system reality - because our economic future depends on it."

The New Haven Line is owned by the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) and operated by Metro-North Railroad under contract with the CTDOT. In 2015, it carried more than 40.3 million passengers, up two percent from the prior year and setting an all-time record. Ridership overall is up about 12 percent over the last five years, with peak-hour ridership up 27 percent.

CTDOT Commissioner James P. Redeker noted that the New Haven Line is now carrying as many passengers today as had been predicted for 2021. He added that CTDOT is testing the M-8 rail cars for possible use on Shore Line East - the commuter railroad between New Haven and New London, where trains need to be propelled by locomotives. The M-8s are powered by overhead catenary lines and do not need locomotives.

An allocation of $200 million is anticipated to be considered later this month at the next meeting of the State Bond Commission to approve the purchase of the new M-8 rail cars.

Under current plans, 10 of the 60 new rail cars will be converted into café cars - popularly known as bar cars. The last New Haven Line café cars were retired in 2014.

Connecticut has already purchased 405 of the M-8 rail cars, which began going into service in 2011 and are now standard on the New Haven Line. Most of the older M-2 rail cars have been retired, but a small fleet remain as back-ups.

Since their implementation, the new M-8 cars have been very well received by customers, who have praised the roomier, high-back, contoured seats with individual headrests and curved arm rests anchored at both ends in the upholstery. The cars have larger windows and better lighting, especially in the vestibules for improved safety.

Each pair of cars have been equipped with bike racks, and they also have intercom systems that customers can use to contact the crew in case of emergency. Other features include LED displays that show the next stop and automated audio announcements, electrical outlets to charge personal devices, coat hooks, and curved luggage racks. Outside, customers see prominent electronic destination signs and external public address speakers. Single leaf doors provide high reliability and lessen the susceptibility to snow intrusion.