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Old 04-13-2018, 11:36 AM   #1081
cybah
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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When the signals go in, are they going to be set up so that they turn green as a bus is approaching, or will they be in typical Boston fashion where the bus has to pull up the intersection and wait? (This is often why buses get screwed compared to heavy rail. A train can't easily stop so we give it priority at crossings. Buses can, so we typically don't.)
I hope that it's as they approach the intersection. The state seems to be wising up to signal prioritization and making sure it is done properly.

Of course you do realize two of the stops (Chelsea and Bellingham) are at one of the intersection so they will be in a stopped position already)
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:38 AM   #1082
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Chelsea Creek Fuel Deliveries

The satellite images on Google Maps suggest that there are two locations where fuel deliveries happen upstream of the bridge:

One tank farm is in Chelsea, on the east side of Eastern Ave just north of Griffin Way. Might a developer of luxury waterfront housing be interested in buying that property from whomever owns it now? One might want to make sure that there are no hazardous materials that have leaked into the ground at that site, and it's desirable to get any developer to make sure whatever they build will survive sea level rise. And it would probably be worthwhile to understand where the fuel goes when it gets transferred to trucks and make sure those folks are comfortable that they have good alternatives if that facility is dismantled.

There's also the tank farm adjacent to 1A / Tomesello Way. If that tank farm needs to stay in operation, I'm wondering if a dock just west of the bridge (where there's another tank farm) along with a pipeline could be used to transfer fuel.

There are also long term questions about how much liquid fuel we will still need in 10-20 years. Companies like Tesla and Proterra are working on eliminating the need for liquid fuel for [edit: land] transportation. We'll probably see many buildings convert from heating oil to electric heat pumps. However, it's not clear whether we're going to figure out how to build batteries that can store enough energy per unit of mass to make long range airplanes practical, so Logan Airport fuel deliveries might need to continue forever.

If the folks making the fuel deliveries wanted to go out of their way to be nice to the SL3, waiting one entire tide cycle (12 hours and 25 minutes) to avoid rush hour could work, as could making deliveries with less full ships, but I think the folks making the deliveries tend to have zero enthusiasm for the concept of absorbing those costs themselves. On the other hand, there's probably some dollar amount that they would find motivating, and perhaps it would be possible to find out what that is to compare it to the cost of building a pipeline or switching to other fuel delivery facilities.
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:43 AM   #1083
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Re: Chelsea Creek Pleasure Boats

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There is some small crafts that do use the bridge, but generally its the huge tankers and they need high tide and the full depth of the creek to get to the facility.

Much like the T last night, the city is also trying to team up to try to get some sort of restriction on the bridge. And Alex (Train.. yes his last name is Train), said that he'd love to hook up with my groups in hope to get some locals to nudge the Coast Guard some to see if we can try to get this changed.
Can we get an explicit ban on raising the bridge for pleasure boats during rush hour (maybe weekdays 5:30 AM to 9:30 AM and 2:30 PM to 6:30 PM)? It probably doesn't matter much now since there don't seem to be any dock facilities for such boats upstream of the bridge, but if anyone ever decides they want to develop such facilities in the future, having a suitable bridge restriction in place in advance will help to limit the impact such dock facilities have on SL3.
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:51 AM   #1084
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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I'm not even a fan of it going to Sullivan very much as suggested by Pollock. It's likely to use 99 over along the CR as stated above but there's too much traffic if 99 is used. And unless it can be its own busway or ROW, it's no better than the buses that are there. I get why they want Sullivan, Casino + more direct connection to Cambridge and Kendall Sq, thus completing yet another arc of the Urban Ring.
99 does have a bus lane in the morning from well north of Second to Sweetser Circle, and they're working on plans for a full time bus lane south of Sweetser Circle...
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:55 AM   #1085
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Re: Chelsea Creek Fuel Deliveries

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Originally Posted by Joel N. Weber II View Post
There are also long term questions about how much liquid fuel we will still need in 10-20 years. Companies like Tesla and Proterra are working on eliminating the need for liquid fuel for [edit: land] transportation. We'll probably see many buildings convert from heating oil to electric heat pumps. However, it's not clear whether we're going to figure out how to build batteries that can store enough energy per unit of mass to make long range airplanes practical, so Logan Airport fuel deliveries might need to continue forever.
Most of the Boston areas fuel comes from tankers. Part of this is because environmentalists (NIMBY's) campaign hard against any new pipelines. The campaign against pipeline also has the affect of increasing natural gas prices, New England has the highest natural gas prices in the country.
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:56 AM   #1086
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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3. Commuter Rail Station - Someone asked about this. It will be put out to bid this summer, and construction should start the fall and be open sometime in 2020. This is good news as I feared they had not received funding for this project yet.

4. Signals & Crossings - This is a big one. Since there are no signals at any of the crossings yet, I asked what will happen. The first few weeks, T Police will be at Everett Ave, Spruce St, and Arlington/Sixth Crossings directing traffic for the busway. Then for 3 months, they will be there during rush hours only. After that, the T will re-assess the need for police details.

Of course what about the signals themselves? It's complicated. The signals cannot be installed until the rail road crossing gates and signals are done. And this can't happen until Phase II, which is the CR station portion of this project. And would not even happen until a year into construction.

So what does this mean? After July, we may not have any police detail or signals for at least a year. How is this rapid transit? When I was told that, I replied to GM Ramirez and was like "It's those traffic signals that make this project pop and be special. With them, it's a very fast ride from Eastern Ave to Market Basket without stopping (except at stations). It's just vital to what makes this project special". I think they understood. I hope this changes.
Why can't the construction be done by the end of 2018? Is there anything about installing a high level commuter rail platform at grade that can't be done in a weekend as long as prefabricated platform sections are constructed in advance? Didn't they get all of the PTC signal rework for the Newburyport / Rockport Lines done in the space of several months, suggesting that redoing a mile of highway crossings might be doable in one or a few weekends?
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:02 AM   #1087
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Chelsea Creek Fuel Deliveries

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Most of the Boston areas fuel comes from tankers. Part of this is because environmentalists (NIMBY's) campaign hard against any new pipelines. The campaign against pipeline also has the affect of increasing natural gas prices, New England has the highest natural gas prices in the country.
On the other hand, New England isn't subsidizing nuclear power plants the way folks in upstate New York and elsewhere in the country are, and as we see renewable energy use grow over the next decade, we'll want to similarly not be paying for pipelines that lose their usefulness before their investors had hoped and expected.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:05 AM   #1088
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Re: Chelsea Creek Fuel Deliveries

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Originally Posted by Joel N. Weber II View Post
On the other hand, New England isn't subsidizing nuclear power plants the way folks in upstate New York and elsewhere in the country are, and as we see renewable energy use grow over the next decade, we'll want to similarly not be paying for pipelines that lose their usefulness before their investors had hoped and expected.
I don't think that they're building new nuclear plants anywhere.

If you think the NIMBY's are bad for skyscrapers try to build a nuclear power plant anywhere.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:06 AM   #1089
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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I hope that it's as they approach the intersection. The state seems to be wising up to signal prioritization and making sure it is done properly.

Of course you do realize two of the stops (Chelsea and Bellingham) are at one of the intersection so they will be in a stopped position already)
I believe there's some other thread on this forum which had a link to a presentation where they indicated that they're only doing signal priority for far side bus stops and not near side bus stops, at least initially. But that's for mixed traffic operation; I wonder if they've planned out exactly what is going to trigger the light for the near side bus stops on the Chelsea busway.
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Old 04-14-2018, 11:12 AM   #1090
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Chelsea Creek Fuel Deliveries

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I don't think that they're building new nuclear plants anywhere.

If you think the NIMBY's are bad for skyscrapers try to build a nuclear power plant anywhere.
Bizarrely, when the Tennessee Valley Authority decided to sell the unfinished Bellefonte site, someone bought it with the intention of finishing it. And it cost someone (probably ratepayers?) $4 or $6 billion.

Ten years from now, pipelines may well look about as foolish as these unfinished nuclear projects do today.
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Old 04-14-2018, 03:52 PM   #1091
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

Hey so in a world where the SL3 is the urban ring, where does it go from here without being stupid like going to Maiden? Wellington maybe, then Davis?
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Old 04-14-2018, 04:17 PM   #1092
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Hey so in a world where the SL3 is the urban ring, where does it go from here without being stupid like going to Maiden? Wellington maybe, then Davis?
Sullivan then Kendall would make the most sense.

I think additional transit to Kendall makes more sense since it is such a huge jobs center. The grand junction line could work for that. I don't think an additional line to Davis would be a priority.

Last edited by tysmith95; 04-14-2018 at 04:28 PM.
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:26 PM   #1093
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Hey so in a world where the SL3 is the urban ring, where does it go from here without being stupid like going to Maiden? Wellington maybe, then Davis?
I'm SO glad you asked... I am doing a presentation for something on the Silver Line and I include an old Urban Ring map:


(see it larger)

I'm sure if we were doing UR now, it would go to Sullivan and not Wellington.

And I have to say, it was pretty hard finding this map, the website is long gone, and the wayback machine (internet archive) has one pull. I had to Photoshop this out of 2 pieces out of a PDF.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:08 PM   #1094
Joel N. Weber II
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Sullivan then Kendall would make the most sense.
It certainly makes sense to have bus service run from Sullivan to Kendall (although it might work best with a new bridge near the south end of Inner Belt Road), but I don't think Chelsea to Everett to Sullivan to Kendall makes any sense; Chelsea to Kendall should be accomplished by rerouting 117 across the Tobin Bridge to Community College and Lechmere on the way to Kendall instead of having it go to Maverick.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:10 PM   #1095
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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I'm sure if we were doing UR now, it would go to Sullivan and not Wellington.
I think when they started planning that Urban Ring route they were convinced that it would never make sense to build an Orange Line station at Assembly.

But I think we should focus on rough approximations of straight lines instead of a single ring.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:30 PM   #1096
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Ehh I don't think they do. The institute that defined those standards defined the Silver Line as Not BRT. Look at the SL1 route from the portal to the Ted Willams. It is the most convoluted route and the bus gets stuck in traffic. SL3 will also share the routing.
I think they designed this with the intention to have two extra dedicated transit lanes in the Ted Williams Tunnel, and then downsized the Ted Williams Tunnel.

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It would have been a good bit faster if they just made the bus routes go on summer street or other surface streets. Taking a left from 93 S or the surface road to the Seaport gets clogged up, but the actual roads in the seaport (Seaport Blvd or Summer Street) do not get clogged up nearly to the extent that other parts of Boston do.
If we could get a bus lane on Congress St from B St (where the I-90 westbound off ramp is) to Fort Point Channel, a contraflow bus lane on Atlantic Ave from Congress St to Summer St, and bus lanes on Summer St from Fort Point Channel to Reserved Channel, shifting SL3 to an all surface routing would probably be an improvement over the South Station bus tunnel.

I think if we could also get bus lanes on Congress St from Haymarket to South Station, turning SL1 into a one way loop (airport terminals -> Sumner Tunnel -> Congress St -> Summer St including South Station and Convention Center -> Ted Williams Tunnel -> airport terminals) might make the most sense.

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Frankly in it's current state the tunnel is useless for every reason other then the fare gates. It was a waste of money as currently constructed imho.
Apparently SL1 runs 8 minute headways (7.5 trips per hour), SL2 runs 5 minute headways (12 trips per hour), SL3 is scheduled to run 10 minute headways (6 trips per hour), and the short turn South Station to Silver Line Way is scheduled for 10 minute headways (6 trips per hour). Of the 31.5 trips per hour, only 13.5 (~43%) use the Ted Williams Tunnel.

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Also to be true BRT it would need dedicated lanes all the way through the Ted Williams.
Does it get slowed down by other traffic? Congestion tolling has the potential to be the answer if this is a problem.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:37 PM   #1097
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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The Everett Transit Plan also had the SLG go beyond Market Basket to 2nd street, then to Norwood Square (up B'way) to Malden Center via Ferry.
I think creating a new, not SL branded bus route running from the Malden Orange Line station along Ferry St, Chelsea St, Everett St, and Meridian St to the Maverick Blue Line station and then the airport terminal loop might make sense.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:42 PM   #1098
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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I'm sure if we were doing UR now, it would go to Sullivan and not Wellington.
But once lower Broadway has a bus lane, what's the route from the Chelsea Market Basket to Broadway?

Beacham would seem to make sense as a direct route, except that we probably can't collectively figure out that a congestion toll on the highway 99 bridge across the Mystic would be a better idea than having Beacham storing a long queue during rush hour that would make the bus painfully slow, which might make Second St a sensible approach to trying to bypass congestion.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:47 PM   #1099
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Does it get slowed down by other traffic? Congestion tolling has the potential to be the answer if this is a problem.
Yes. The Ted Williams tunnel gets congested regularly.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:19 PM   #1100
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Re: Silver Line to Chelsea

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Originally Posted by Joel N. Weber II View Post
It certainly makes sense to have bus service run from Sullivan to Kendall (although it might work best with a new bridge near the south end of Inner Belt Road), but I don't think Chelsea to Everett to Sullivan to Kendall makes any sense; Chelsea to Kendall should be accomplished by rerouting 117 across the Tobin Bridge to Community College and Lechmere on the way to Kendall instead of having it go to Maverick.
Actually a while back there was some plan for a bus route to do exactly that but it was a NEW route. The route number it used was 113.

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Originally Posted by Joel N. Weber II View Post
I think creating a new, not SL branded bus route running from the Malden Orange Line station along Ferry St, Chelsea St, Everett St, and Meridian St to the Maverick Blue Line station and then the airport terminal loop might make sense.
You know it would be SL branded bus

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Originally Posted by Joel N. Weber II View Post
But once lower Broadway has a bus lane, what's the route from the Chelsea Market Basket to Broadway?

Beacham would seem to make sense as a direct route, except that we probably can't collectively figure out that a congestion toll on the highway 99 bridge across the Mystic would be a better idea than having Beacham storing a long queue during rush hour that would make the bus painfully slow, which might make Second St a sensible approach to trying to bypass congestion.
If anything goes, a busway along the current rail to Broadway. Maybe a ramp up. or have it cut thru T property to Broadway. Or maybe use Route 16 and go into the circle. There's a few possibilities.
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