EuroStar wrote:OK, I will bite with a service improvement idea. NJT first tested the ALP45s on this line switching from diesel to electric mode and back at MSU. For a second year now the dual modes are used to Bay Head on the Coast Line -- 3 trains in the morning and 3 in the evening go to/from NYP. However, direct NYP service has not been extended beyond MSU. Let's for a moment ignore the fact that NJT has no money for this, but how much extra ridership are one or two direct NYP train likely to attract especially given the very high bus ridership from the Wayne Transit Center to the Bus Terminal?
It appears that extending one or two trains that currently start at MSU to to start in Dover or even beyond is relatively easy logistically (compared to many other possible service improvements). First, no new equipment is needed because the train set would be the same as the one that already starts at MSU in the morning. The only requirement is that it needs to have an ALP45 pushing/pulling it. Managing that does not appear that difficult -- it is done successfully for the Coast And Raritan Lines. After its first run into NYP the set can shuttle back and forth during the day the same way that the current electric set does and then at the end of the day its last run can be extended beyond MSU back to the starting point (Dover or beyond). The beauty as with the Coast Line is that no new slots are required into the tunnels under the Hudson or NYP. The crew shift management is somewhat less obvious how to do, so I will leave it blank for now, but there are certainly some options. The trip from the Boonton line diesel only stops will be long -- no question about that because skipping any stop in Monclair that is currently made is out of question (at least politically). Nevertheless it will be a one seat ride into New York and direct one seat rides are preferred by the vast majority of commuters.
So the question really is, will the additional ridership be tiny (<25) or will it be a respectable number (>250)? Is it worth it to extend one or two trains to start in Dover or beyond in the morning and to end back there on their last run in the evening? I would say that at current level of ridership extending more than 2 trains is not worth it, but how about 1 or 2?
I've been saying for years that they should extend a dual mode to Wayne Route 23... From the yard at Great Notch to Wayne Rt.23 is 4 miles give or take. In other words it's 8 minutes at the MOST that a train would need to get up to Wayne.. Given the current schedule it can be done. There isn't a question in my mind about the ridership. It's there but it's not time efficient right now nor does the 1 stop transfer help. Make those competitive and its an instant win. Wayne is an extremely desirable place to live, very safe, top 25 school district and relatively low in cost compared to Ramsey, Glen Rock, Summit, etc. The commuter lot is full to capacity for the buses (that has been an issue for a while now) however on any given day that rush hour trip that at 12AM Midnight takes 20 minutes can take over an hour and typically takes 45-55 minutes on a normal weekday.. If parking became the issue (there is PLENTY OF parking at Mountain View) which is less than a mile up the road. They could start service there. Hell they could even start service in Lincoln Park and bring back the siding. If you had a train that did Wayne, MSU, Walnut, Bay, NWK, SEC, NYP it would beat the bus. Of course this is NJT were talking about and it's not logical in their eyes. Although I do have hope maybe new ownership will come in someday as NJT may not be able to be publicly funded for much longer. Speaking of new ownerships I've been a Marlins fan my whole life and today was the press conference with their new owners Jeter and Bruce and it gave me a lot of hope for the future, (so that's why I'm feeling optimistic about NJT)....