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Old 05-28-2019, 08:47 AM   #3541
jbray
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

The Northern Strand is basically a duplicated orange line with the same basic issue: half of its catchment is river. A much better use of resources, albeit at a much greater cost, would be to build a subway through Everett under Broadway/99 connecting to the Strand at Route 60 across for the Holy Cross Cemetery. It would be better if this was not part of the Orange line but I'm not sure that's possible. Given that this is crazy transit pitches, I would put the new line from Everett through Charleston under Main (if possible) or New Rutherford/99 (if not) and run it through the alt-N-S Rail-link on Congress St and connecting it to Dudley->Mattapan. Connections to North Station, Haymarket, State, maybe Post office Square, South Station, and Tufts Medical (not that I see the geometry there).

Because this is crazy transit pitches, another northern alternative to this new line through Boston would be to thread it north with a train deck on the Tobin and run it under Broadway/107 in Chelsea turning toward the Northgate and connecting to the Strand on the other side. Both of these northern lines could co-exist if you kept the 99 route on 99 and never turned it on the Strand, but it's having the two southern routings that becomes less beneficial. Maybe under a grand junction ring (if geometrically possible), turning at Mass Ave and creating the long missing Mass Ave Subway? That seems like a waste of that build though.
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Old 05-29-2019, 08:09 AM   #3542
ulrichomega
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by jbray View Post
The Northern Strand is basically a duplicated orange line with the same basic issue: half of its catchment is river. A much better use of resources, albeit at a much greater cost, would be to build a subway through Everett under Broadway/99 connecting to the Strand at Route 60 across for the Holy Cross Cemetery. It would be better if this was not part of the Orange line but I'm not sure that's possible. Given that this is crazy transit pitches, I would put the new line from Everett through Charleston under Main (if possible) or New Rutherford/99 (if not) and run it through the alt-N-S Rail-link on Congress St and connecting it to Dudley->Mattapan. Connections to North Station, Haymarket, State, maybe Post office Square, South Station, and Tufts Medical (not that I see the geometry there).
A subway under Broadway is one of those "needs to happen on a long time scale" things. In the shorter term, sending a Green Line branch up to Malden alleviates an Orange line that's already straining, and will be straining more heavily if it's extended to Reading (yes yes yes, they're getting more cars, that's not going to help indefinitely). And worst case scenario you can build the Green Line out as far as you want/can, and then once you've built your Broadway tunnel you cannibalize whatever ROW you need and you're golden.

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Because this is crazy transit pitches, another northern alternative to this new line through Boston would be to thread it north with a train deck on the Tobin and run it under Broadway/107 in Chelsea turning toward the Northgate and connecting to the Strand on the other side. Both of these northern lines could co-exist if you kept the 99 route on 99 and never turned it on the Strand, but it's having the two southern routings that becomes less beneficial. Maybe under a grand junction ring (if geometrically possible), turning at Mass Ave and creating the long missing Mass Ave Subway? That seems like a waste of that build though.
I've been fiddling with maps including a transit level on a rebuilt Tobin, and I've got to say I like them a lot. I think that reusing some of 1's ROW is a better use of resources, though. It's a bit tight for anything on the surface, but an elevated or tunnel should be fine (but expensive). The benefits of a transit over the Tobin are that it gives Charlestown some much needed transit, it activates a new ROW rather than needing to cannibalize anything existing, and it gives Chelsea a much better way into the city. Unfortunately, there's not really anywhere to go once you hit Charlestown. I don't think you can get deep enough for the NSRL bores by that point, and there's no way you're getting into the Orange Line tunnels. I sort of like sending it over to Kendall somehow, given how much of a job center that is/is going to be.

End result

Overall, I don't really see the utility in continuing heavy rail out into Saugus (or even along the old 1 reservation). Too few people, too long distances, and too much swamp. Chelsea and Everett could both use the transit eventually, but if it really comes down to it I'd be tempted to say just pull a Mattapan Trolley out to Saugus (and maybe continue it to Lynn to reconnect with the Blue Line there). Another benefit of ending in the interchange there (for both lines) is the relative abundance of land for things like maintenance yards.

If you're branching the Orange Line, I think you need the Green Line to Malden at the same time to compensate for the loss in service. If you're sending the Orange Line to Reading at the same time, I don't think you can even branch. You'd probably have to figure out a new place for the Broadway Subway to go to at that point.

EDIT: Updated map with a some spitballs at possible extensions from a Tobin transit deck. I can't come up with anything good. A Memorial Drive subway is ridiculously expensive for service the fish in the Charles, but does mean you could extend to Harvard/Alston eventually. You could weave around and do some impossible geometry work to head down over Memorial which serves Back Bay pretty well (and gives Chelsea/Revere riders another destination) but is, again, kind of impossible. You could also just pull a u-ey and bang back out along the Blue Line, but that kills connections the most.

Last edited by ulrichomega; 05-29-2019 at 08:37 AM.
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Old 06-01-2019, 10:13 AM   #3543
Hubman
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Would it be possible to build a rapid transit line along the Fairmount line by elevating it over the tracks, somewhat like the Union Freight RR and the Atlantic Ave El? You would probably run into some difficulty when the line goes below grade at Washington Street, but a viaduct over the crossing could work, save neighborhood opposition that might arise.
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Old 06-01-2019, 10:44 AM   #3544
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Would it be possible to build a rapid transit line along the Fairmount line by elevating it over the tracks, somewhat like the Union Freight RR and the Atlantic Ave El? You would probably run into some difficulty when the line goes below grade at Washington Street, but a viaduct over the crossing could work, save neighborhood opposition that might arise.
That would be completely ungangly to construct and maintain because the physical properties of the line are so varied. It's way more heterogeneous than the SW Corridor cut. In addition to the price being driven sky high by how many different construction methods you'd have to use (including major retaining wall work at the narrowest points just to have something to anchor to), you'd have stiff opposition in Dorchester from rapid transit trains towering over back bedroom windows, noise un-muffled by the extra elevation, and so on. The quality-of-life issues are pretty significant.

You won't see the whole line rapid transited. However, it is possible to bring the Red Line out from Mattapan to Fairmount and Readville. Subway under the hard granite bedrock of River St. to portal on the Poydras St. hillside, then pick up the Fairmount ROW where it's nearly all ex- quad-track from long-extinct freight leads. So Hyde Park can get 6-minute frequencies (and this is now the only way now that all NEC track berths are spoken for shutting out the Orange Line), even if Dorchester practically can't. I wouldn't call it a high priority by any means, but it's eminently doable because the ROW south of River St. is compatible and that hard granite seam makes for economical tunneling under River.
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Old 06-01-2019, 01:49 PM   #3545
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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So Hyde Park can get 6-minute frequencies (and this is now the only way now that all NEC track berths are spoken for shutting out the Orange Line), even if Dorchester practically can't.
6-minute frequencies, yes, but to where? I've seen this idea on many a map over the years (including some of my own), and while it's appealing as a single leg of a proto-outer-Urban Ring, it's still decidedly circumferential service. Doing some rough math, but assuming similar speeds to the existing South Station-Ashmont corridor, a Red Line journey from Fairmount (Hyde Park) via Mattapan and Ashmont would take about 40 minutes, and still not get you to Back Bay. Compare that to the Fairmount Line, which gets you to the same place but today is scheduled to do so in 26 minutes (and probably would be a touch faster if electrified).

6-minute headways on a 40+ minute journey vs 10-minute headways on a 25-minute journey? I'm not saying it couldn't work (and in a full-build crazy transit pitch world, it probably would), but it seems far from an obvious winner.

Hyde Park as a neighborhood is a tricky transit challenge. Yes, it's served by Fairmount, and high-frequency headways will do a lot for it. But Fairmount does not serve Back Bay nor Longwood, which is a major drawback.

I could see Readville becoming more of a transfer hub in an electrification world -- Franklin Line trains stopping to transfer passengers to NEC trains for direct service to Longwood and Back Bay -- not unlike Jamaica in NYC. Readville itself could therefore end up seeing pretty high frequency service, which could mitigate the loss of Hyde Park, if there is reasonable access.

Hyde Park Ave. has been proposed as a BRT corridor and I think that it would interact well with high-frequency Regional Rail. With proper bus lanes, limited stops, and signal priority, a journey from Hyde Park to Readville could take 5 minutes or less -- Hyde Park to Forest Hills or Roslindale Village probably 10-15 minutes. Even though it may seem counterintuitive, a Hyde Park-Readville-Ruggles journey could actually be the fastest route, given that peak Franklin trains are currently timetabled at 10 minutes between Readville and Ruggles. Assuming well-timed transfers, a BRT + RER journey could take 20 minutes or less.

(An Orange Line journey from Forest Hills to Ruggles is currently timetabled at 9 minutes. Add on a 10-15 minute BRT journey from Hyde Park, and it would also be a viable alternative.)

The current situation, for what it's worth, has an inbound train at most every 30 minutes from Hyde Park during the morning peak, with a 40 minute gap between 7:10 and 7:50. None of those trains stop at Ruggles, though presumably that would change once the new platform opens.
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Old 06-01-2019, 03:33 PM   #3546
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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6-minute frequencies, yes, but to where? I've seen this idea on many a map over the years (including some of my own), and while it's appealing as a single leg of a proto-outer-Urban Ring, it's still decidedly circumferential service. Doing some rough math, but assuming similar speeds to the existing South Station-Ashmont corridor, a Red Line journey from Fairmount (Hyde Park) via Mattapan and Ashmont would take about 40 minutes, and still not get you to Back Bay. Compare that to the Fairmount Line, which gets you to the same place but today is scheduled to do so in 26 minutes (and probably would be a touch faster if electrified).

6-minute headways on a 40+ minute journey vs 10-minute headways on a 25-minute journey? I'm not saying it couldn't work (and in a full-build crazy transit pitch world, it probably would), but it seems far from an obvious winner.
I have no frigging clue where you're getting that math. The T's trip planner says SS-Ashmont is a 17-minute trip. SS-Braintree, at a much longer distance, clocks in at 28 minutes. While the trip planner may not be accurate under peak load, under-peak-load itself is going to get faster with the new fleet, signal improvements, and higher speed limits. Generous padding still doesn't account for 23 extra minutes magically appearing in your schedule.

And even at max estension the Ashmont/Readville branch is still not as long as the Braintree Branch is today.
  • Ashmont (4 stations) is 3 miles from the branch split at JFK.
  • Mattapan (+2 stops: Milton, Mattapan = 6 branch stations) is 5.5 miles from JFK, and a +2.5 mi. extension.
  • Readville via River St. + Fairmount ROW (max +3 probable stops: River St., Fairmount, Readville = 9 branch stations) is 8.4 miles from JFK: 5.4 mi. and 5 stations past Ashmont, 2.9 mi. past Mattapan.
  • Braintree (5 stations + 1 potential Dorchester infill) is 9 miles from JFK.
About the only problem here is that maximal extension of the Ashmont Branch to HP will leave an imbalance in stations compared to the Braintree Branch. +2 to Mattapan wouldn't make a meaningful difference, but Readville might. Now, it's a fair bet the Neponset/Port Norfolk infill on the Braintree Branch is going to be built sooner or later to more or less neutralize that discrepancy. If any traffic management problems open up on the 2 branches due to discrepancies in # of stations vs. stop spacing, then that's solvable by moving Savin Hill off the Ashmont Branch onto the Braintree branch. But I really don't think that'll be even be necessary to keep the branches in balance, unless you were looking to extend even further from Readville to Dedham Center...which on anyone's crayon drawings has to be considered some later tack-on that's surplus to intracity requirement.

And where is this a circumferential? Other than being shaped in places by waterways (e.g. Milton-Mattapan) the Red Line branch splits glom pretty faithfully to SW and SE directions on the compass.

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Hyde Park as a neighborhood is a tricky transit challenge. Yes, it's served by Fairmount, and high-frequency headways will do a lot for it. But Fairmount does not serve Back Bay nor Longwood, which is a major drawback.
The whole world physically can't go through Back Bay or Longwood. Do we make icky-poo faces at the Red Line because it *only* goes to Kendall? No. Both ends of the transfer sustaining high frequencies and both ends of the transfer not being addled by state-of-repair disasters makes the two-seater as valuable as the less-frequent one-seater. This pants-shitting terror of embracing enhanced frequencies because of the theoretical loss of a one-seat or the theoretical non-gain of a one-seat that would've taken doubleplus-theoretical pretzel builds to ever have in the first place needs to get beaten out of some folks' brains. It's too cromulent a way to talk ourselves out of meaningful improvements. Want no RER ever?...let politicians kvetch more about how the whole world has to go to Back Bay Station. We'll never see frequencies better than an hour in our lifetimes if that's the base requirement.

If Hyde Park neighborhood needed a one-seat to Back Bay as its be-all/end-all, they'd have been taking hostages over NEC frequencies instead of spending 20 years advocating for high-frequency service on the other line that aligns with the natural orientation of population density. Or, conversely, their violent rejection of re-routes that took that neighborhood service down Track 61 to BCEC instead makes a different kind of statement about being told by someone else where their jobs should be vs. actually are. Perhaps we might want to trust the people who actually live there on where they say they most want to go instead of telling them what's good for them. Dilemma of one-seat to Back Bay got raised again and again in the decades worth of meetings about the Fairmount corridor; time and again the answer was they'd rather have the frequencies. And honestly, that's how the frequencies-to-transfers vs. one-seat argument goes more often than not on any system where the debate is raised. I think arch-urb types like this board's membership care waaaaaaaaaay more about the Back Bays of the world than average citizenry from more widely divergent walks of life.

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I could see Readville becoming more of a transfer hub in an electrification world -- Franklin Line trains stopping to transfer passengers to NEC trains for direct service to Longwood and Back Bay -- not unlike Jamaica in NYC. Readville itself could therefore end up seeing pretty high frequency service, which could mitigate the loss of Hyde Park, if there is reasonable access.
This is a good point that needs highlighting. When the NEC is quad-tracked south of Forest Hills, the Hyde Park platforms are going to be compressed into an island on the west side of the ROW (I'm guessing because of abutting constrictions with the side streets). Will be the same platform setup as Forest Hills CR. This is bad because it means Providence/Stoughton have to do a bunch of crossover games to get there and back, causing Amtrak conflicts galore. Franklin is on a slightly better alignment for that new platform if its schedules used HP much (it doesn't), but it'll have to interline with Fairmount in an RER universe. Then South Coast Rail via Stoughton forces the Stoughton schedule to omit HP, leaving only a crossover-mangled Providence to sporadically serve it when Amtrak isn't in range. The squished layout flat-out doesn't work, and if it can't be unsquished back to 2 side platforms all the hand-wringing about preserving HP for its one-seat to Back Bay is for naught. There's no point in screwing up multiple lines' worth of traffic for trains that are going to be so much less frequent than today's not-at-all-frequent HP trains simply for the myth of the one-seat?

Readville's NEC side platforms are compatible with quad-track by shaving back the conspicuous excess width on the southbound platform. So renovating those and establishing egresses centered more around the Milton St. overpass (since the Fairmount platform will be moving ~200 ft. north centered on the Milton/HP Ave. intersection when it's rebuilt for 2 tracks) would indeed enable a superstation that could sustain superstation-level traffic. Providence/Stoughton wouldn't have to fear Amtrak conflicts and could pick up that stop on more schedules, while Franklin/Foxboro are already there and *some* Forge Park supplementals will still be able to use the NEC-Franklin connector when Amtrak is in a lull (it'll just have to be fistfull of daily one-offs rather than a regular schedule).

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Hyde Park Ave. has been proposed as a BRT corridor and I think that it would interact well with high-frequency Regional Rail. With proper bus lanes, limited stops, and signal priority, a journey from Hyde Park to Readville could take 5 minutes or less -- Hyde Park to Forest Hills or Roslindale Village probably 10-15 minutes. Even though it may seem counterintuitive, a Hyde Park-Readville-Ruggles journey could actually be the fastest route, given that peak Franklin trains are currently timetabled at 10 minutes between Readville and Ruggles. Assuming well-timed transfers, a BRT + RER journey could take 20 minutes or less.

(An Orange Line journey from Forest Hills to Ruggles is currently timetabled at 9 minutes. Add on a 10-15 minute BRT journey from Hyde Park, and it would also be a viable alternative.)
No/nein/never on Orange to HP. Amtrak has Track 4 claimed, reams of traffic modeling show how just how jam-packed the NEC will be, and there is no room to widen the cut around the surrounding street grid. The dream of Orange going to HP and Readville died in the 1980's when Amtrak first comprehensively studied HSR on the Corridor. You might as well delete that entirely from brain, because it's as impossible as that HRT line Boston Transit Commission planned to Newton & Riverside along B&A tracks 3 & 4 that the Mass Pike later grabbed.

Red to HP/Fairmount + Readville via Mattapan...the point of this discussion...is the lone remaining rapid transit option for HP since that former Orange-NEC corridor is now more-than spoken for. I don't think it cracks the Top 10 in most-needed extensions or anything, but it is a feasible non- budget-buster that figures to remain feasible for the deep long-term. And we've already established that the schedule math from downtown is not at all off-scale like that spurious 40-minute calculation. It's a Crazy pitch only for its very low priority amongst a very big backlog of projects, not because of any intrinsic cost/build/ops feasibility whoppers.

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The current situation, for what it's worth, has an inbound train at most every 30 minutes from Hyde Park during the morning peak, with a 40 minute gap between 7:10 and 7:50. None of those trains stop at Ruggles, though presumably that would change once the new platform opens.
See above. Ruggles isn't the problem. Capacity to Hyde Park is the problem. You cannot schedule more trains there, and when Track 4 comes back the track layout gets so mangled that it'll get even fewer trains. The one-seat that has no frequencies is not a one-seat worth fighting for. Especially when it's not fixable like this situation won't be fixable in an RER universe where Forge Park has to vacate and Stoughton/SCR may have to vacate. Staring harder at Ruggles isn't going to fix this. Work the frequencies where they are, not where they ain't. Readville is a possible solution. Bus route recalibration and frequency enhancement is a possible solution. BRT is a possible solution. Any of them can be part of a blanket solution across the corridor to match higher frequencies at transfers. Note also: Newmarket is supposed to be on the southern Urban Ring's JFK spur out of Dudley, so getting those protected Melnea Cass bus lanes set up can lead to quick implementation of a frequent route to Dudley/Ruggles, even if the starter route hasn't yet got all the BRT bells-and-whistles of the full-on southern Ring buildout.
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Old 06-01-2019, 04:23 PM   #3547
Riverside
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Alright, relax, you've misinterpreted several of my points -- maybe I wasn't clear.

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Originally Posted by F-Line to Dudley View Post
I have no frigging clue where you're getting that math. The T's trip planner says SS-Ashmont is a 17-minute trip.
Yep, 17 minutes for a 5-mile trip with several S curves. Ashmont-Milton-Mattapan-Fairmount is another 4 miles, with roughly the same station spacing and a couple more curves. Contrast that with Braintree, which is straighter and has a 4-mile nonstop section.

17 + (.8 x 17) = 30.6 minutes, plus peak-load padding. I grant it'd ultimately be closer to 30 minutes than 40 minutes, but it's still a lengthier trip that takes you to the same place an Indigo Line would: South Station.

My point (even with the lower travel time estimate) is that the difference between 6-minute headways on a 30+ minute journey vs 10-minute headways on a 25-minute journey is not astronomical. Yeah, it's not trivial, but it's not huge. Which is why this proposal is "meh" in my eyes.

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And where is this a circumferential? Other than being shaped in places by waterways (e.g. Milton-Mattapan) the Red Line branch splits glom pretty faithfully to SW and SE directions on the compass.
Fairmount-Mattapan-Ashmont-JFK/UMass is about 7 miles of track. About half of those are traveling east-west. South of Ashmont especially, you've essentially got a dog leg. It's a less direct route between South Station and Fairmount, and thus takes on some qualities of a circumferential. Not that that's per se a bad thing -- SL3 does the same thing in Chelsea, and that's clearly the best route absent an expensive Tobin rework.

(And, as you say, if Red were to continue on to Dedham, it would likewise become more of a circumferential. In an RER future with a Red-to-Dedham extension, I'd expect most Dedham commuters to transfer at Readville to an NEC express service, whether going to Back Bay or South Station.)

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If Hyde Park neighborhood needed a one-seat to Back Bay as its be-all/end-all, they'd have been taking hostages over NEC frequencies instead of spending 20 years advocating for high-frequency service on the other line that aligns with the natural orientation of population density. ... I think arch-urb types like this board's membership care waaaaaaaaaay more about the Back Bays of the world than average citizenry from more widely divergent walks of life.
Relax. No one is saying that one-seat to Longwood+Back Bay is more important than the Indigo Line, nor am I saying I know better than the folks who live there. What I am saying is that the one clear downside of RER is that Hyde Park loses its one-seat to Longwood+Back Bay (for the platform spacing issues which you describe here and elsewhere). Hyde Park does get some ridership, so there clearly are some folks who use that route.

My point is that a Red Line extension to Hyde Park would certainly improve frequencies, and isn't per se a bad idea, but that it doesn't address the only real drawback of RER, which is the loss of direct access to areas west of Downtown. If money is to be spent on tunneling etc., I think it's fair to suggest that it should do more than duplicate other service but with worse travel times.

(Though it would be fair to point out that a Red extension would offer a one-seat ride between Cambridge and Hyde Park -- that'd be fair.)

Quote:
No/nein/never on Orange to HP.
Was not something I proposed at all. I described BRT service running from Readville through Hyde Park up to either Forest Hills or a one-stop extension to Roslindale Village. (Forest Hills being preferable because it's more direct.) Don't know where you got this?

Quote:
Red to HP/Fairmount + Readville via Mattapan...the point of this discussion...is the lone remaining rapid transit option for HP since that former Orange-NEC corridor is now more-than spoken for. I don't think it cracks the Top 10 in most-needed extensions or anything, but it is a feasible non- budget-buster that figures to remain feasible for the deep long-term. And we've already established that the schedule math from downtown is not at all off-scale like that spurious 40-minute calculation. It's a Crazy pitch only for its very low priority amongst a very big backlog of projects, not because of any intrinsic cost/build/ops feasibility whoppers.
Yeah, there's no disagreement here. The schedule from downtown definitely will be worse on a Red Line extension, but it won't be unusable. But it's a middling pitch. If you want to extend the Red Line past Mattapan, I think it's a stronger argument to position it as the first phase of an extension to Dedham, Roslindale Village (via Cummins Hwy, absolutely a crazy pitch), Route 128 or somewhere on the Franklin Line.

Quote:
See above. Ruggles isn't the problem. Capacity to Hyde Park is the problem. You cannot schedule more trains there, and when Track 4 comes back the track layout gets so mangled that it'll get even fewer trains. The one-seat that has no frequencies is not a one-seat worth fighting for.
I never said Ruggles was the problem. Nor did I suggest that we should try to get more mainline trains to stop at Hyde Park. I explicitly suggested -- as you said -- that the elimination of Hyde Park could be remedied with good feeder service into Readville and Forest Hills, since those would address the downside of RER -- the loss of the one-seat to West-of-Downtown. It is not something that I am "fighting for."

I appreciate the detail and thoroughness, it just seems like you didn't read what I wrote in some places.
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Old 06-01-2019, 04:27 PM   #3548
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Originally Posted by F-Line to Dudley View Post

No/nein/never on Orange to HP. Amtrak has Track 4 claimed, reams of traffic modeling show how just how jam-packed the NEC will be, and there is no room to widen the cut around the surrounding street grid. The dream of Orange going to HP and Readville died in the 1980's when Amtrak first comprehensively studied HSR on the Corridor. You might as well delete that entirely from brain, because it's as impossible as that HRT line Boston Transit Commission planned to Newton & Riverside along B&A tracks 3 & 4 that the Mass Pike later grabbed.

Red to HP/Fairmount + Readville via Mattapan...the point of this discussion...is the lone remaining rapid transit option for HP since that former Orange-NEC corridor is now more-than spoken for. I don't think it cracks the Top 10 in most-needed extensions or anything, but it is a feasible non- budget-buster that figures to remain feasible for the deep long-term. And we've already established that the schedule math from downtown is not at all off-scale like that spurious 40-minute calculation. It's a Crazy pitch only for its very low priority amongst a very big backlog of projects, not because of any intrinsic cost/build/ops feasibility whoppers.
I might be wrong, but I think the suggestion was to have BRT on Hyde Park Ave funnel ridership on that corridor to RER-type service at Fairmount or to the Orange Line at Forest Hills. Not to put RER service on the NEC.

[EDIT] Missed that follow-up by Riverside. Sounds like I interpreted correctly.
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Old 06-01-2019, 10:11 PM   #3549
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

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Yep, 17 minutes for a 5-mile trip with several S curves. Ashmont-Milton-Mattapan-Fairmount is another 4 miles, with roughly the same station spacing and a couple more curves. Contrast that with Braintree, which is straighter and has a 4-mile nonstop section.

17 + (.8 x 17) = 30.6 minutes, plus peak-load padding. I grant it'd ultimately be closer to 30 minutes than 40 minutes, but it's still a lengthier trip that takes you to the same place an Indigo Line would: South Station.

My point (even with the lower travel time estimate) is that the difference between 6-minute headways on a 30+ minute journey vs 10-minute headways on a 25-minute journey is not astronomical. Yeah, it's not trivial, but it's not huge. Which is why this proposal is "meh" in my eyes.
Urban Rail ops do 15-minute bi-directional frequencies, not 10. So max Fairmount frequencies are a 9-minute difference from Red branch frequencies, not 4 minutes. That's a much more significant gulf to contend with, and it changes the calculus a lot on the travel time vs. frequency balance.

The only places on the Purple Line where local-stop train frequencies will outstrip 15 minutes are in the terminal district, which you may as well lump Ruggles inside of going forward since there'll only need to be a few select Providence skips per day in the name of Amtrak avoidance. *Maybe* a Peabody-fied Eastern Route undercuts the :15 average at some stops with 3 branches churning, but most likely you'll see a skip-stopping load balance act on the Rockburyport schedules to speed things up while keeping Salem-inbound local stops in equilibrium at :15 and adding more infill stops. *Maybe* Anderson Station also sees sub-:15 frequencies because when NHDOT builds out to Concord they plan to run the end-to-end service as a wholly separate (and probably smidge less frequent) schedule from the T's Lowell/Nashua-terminating locals, picking up all local stops in NH but expressing in MA serving only Lowell, Anderson, and North Station. Thus, that stop may see periodic spikes of more frequent service...though not necessarily anything dramatic.

But things like Urban Rail to Riverside are not going to interline with long-haul Worcester RER service, which needs to skip nearly all of Allston-Newton to make tolerable time to Worcester. And you're certainly not going to see major backfill anywhere else challenging the :15 floor because load-balancing cushion on such a dispatching-complex system will be paramount. So if frequencies still weight much heavier to generating demand than the one-seat or raw clock time when all else is equal, you'll pretty much never see a situation where Urban Rail is preferable to full rapid transit. And that becomes especially true if the transfer at SS to a Transitway-Downtown light rail connection is completely inside the prepayment area instead of requiring tap-on/tap-off and the uncertainty of the T being able to implement an RER-to-rapid transit transfer fee whenever it wants if budget crises warrant.

The reason you have Urban Rail on Fairmount and not a rapid transit proposal is that we made a deal-making promise not to sacrifice the last direct freight route into Port of Boston because 100-year sustainability considerations rule an instant-gratification mode grab unwise enough that instant-gratification pols have to be legally barred from it. Therefore Urban Rail is the best you can do on the whole of the corridor...in similar vein as Urban Rail is the best you can do on the B&A through Newton with the Pike permanently cannibalizing half the ROW, and that no-Urban Rail/yes-Rapid Transit is the only equitable way to give the Needham Line corridor service around the permanence of the SW Corridor capacity constriction.

The only exception is Hyde Park, because the area south of River St. to Readville was once graded for 4 tracks due to extinct freight sidings. The only reason you'd consider Red is because Orange can no longer be done on the NEC. The only reason the build itself is non-crazy on price is because a station-less subway tunnel between Mattapan Sq. and Poydras St. anchored in hard granite seam either under River St. or deep-bored straight under property lines comes out well to the reasonable side for any kind of digging in Boston-proper. And it doesn't blow Red Line ops out of balance in any meaningful way to cause concern with branch management.


As for the math:

You'll need to refactor Braintree with the Port Norfolk infill stop. That's going to be built long before you ever consider Hyde Park. With PN the largest station gap on the Braintree Branch becomes 2 miles: JFK-Port Norfolk. On the rest of the branch it's 1.5 mi. (PN-N. Quincy), 0.8 mi. (NQ-Wollaston), 1.2 mi. (Wollaston-Quincy Ctr.), 1.3 mi. (QC-Quincy Adams), 1.7 mi. (QA-Braintree). Average: 1.4 mi. Wider spacing than the other lines, but no longer the extreme outlier with its most pregnant omission plugged.

Extending out of Ashmont the distances would be 1.3 mi. (Ashmont-Milton), 1.3 mi. (Milton-Mattapan), 0.9 mi. (Mattapan-optional River St. infill), 0.8 mi. (River St.-Fairmount), 1.2 mi. (Fairmount-Readville). Average: 1.1 mi. on the extra stops. Average for existing Ashmont Branch: 0.7 mi. Average combining existing Ashmont Branch with Readville extension stops: 0.9 mi.

What's remarkable is how little the needle gets pushed by the extension. And since it's acceleration/deceleration where the biggest performance boost is going to come from all the lineside improvements to Red, the Ashmont Branch sees a comparably bigger performance boost. As per my last post, if a wide discrepancy opens up between branches you swap Savin Hill over to the Braintree side to keep things in balance...but I don't even think further continuation to Dedham ends up forcing that trade.

Quote:
Fairmount-Mattapan-Ashmont-JFK/UMass is about 7 miles of track. About half of those are traveling east-west. South of Ashmont especially, you've essentially got a dog leg. It's a less direct route between South Station and Fairmount, and thus takes on some qualities of a circumferential. Not that that's per se a bad thing -- SL3 does the same thing in Chelsea, and that's clearly the best route absent an expensive Tobin rework.
Not the same. The Red Line is a thoroughly through-the-gut operation. SL3 cobbles together some flotsam that's going to someday be repurposed into a from-the-ground-up radial in the form of the Urban Ring. The travel patterns are what makes a line radial vs. a spoke. Riverbank geography doesn't suddenly turn Red into something it's not as the ridership patterns are still going to tilt overwhelmingly to/from the gut.

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(And, as you say, if Red were to continue on to Dedham, it would likewise become more of a circumferential. In an RER future with a Red-to-Dedham extension, I'd expect most Dedham commuters to transfer at Readville to an NEC express service, whether going to Back Bay or South Station.)
At 6-min. frequencies behind prepayment, or at 15-min.? I think this Dedham leg is out-of-scope because intracity comes first and Dedham is a weird anti-transit land that doesn't seem to want things all logic says they should want. But even with their weirdness, are they really going to buck established human behavior when it comes to the primacy of frequencies dictating where the ridership goes?

Even though Providence + Stoughton (if you can salvage any intracity stops on a South Coast Rail schedule that currently projects to skip them) combine to make good frequency (if maybe not :15 on-the-button) and all manner of traffic on Fairmount/Franklin combine to make :15 exactly on-the-button...it's not like you're just adding up the NEC and Fairmount platforms together to net 7.5 minutes. The platforms are far apart, and two routes under two different dispatchers are working the lines. Between scheduling convergence and simply counting the footsteps to transfer, it's not in real life going to be the superduperstation that Jamaica on LIRR is. You'll be guaranteed a :15 in the Fairmount direction, a good-ish if meandering frequency on the NEC (still can't see every single Providence/Stoughton slot making it even if most could), and the occasional lucky timing where inbound arrivals on separate platforms are spaced enough to give you a momentary sub-:15 headway. But it's still not the same as 6 minutes on rapid transit that avoids an unfixably sprawly station setup.

Quote:
My point is that a Red Line extension to Hyde Park would certainly improve frequencies, and isn't per se a bad idea, but that it doesn't address the only real drawback of RER, which is the loss of direct access to areas west of Downtown. If money is to be spent on tunneling etc., I think it's fair to suggest that it should do more than duplicate other service but with worse travel times.
RER creates some minor losers amongst winners. NSRL does that even moreso. The spoils are distributed far and wide to great effect, but there are microcosms where that's not going to be true. Hyde Park Station is one of those. The Needham Line: whoooo-boy that's one of those if we find ourselves too cowardly as a state to do that rapid transit conversion.

No doubt this is going to cause some fear and hand-wringing...in those microcosms. But I have to shake my head at the number of times I hear the sky is falling on aB because one-seat to Back Bay is in question. Or that everything not being routed through Back Bay and Kendall means the city is going to collapse into a gravitational singularity. It's not physically possible to give BBY one-seats to everyone, every time. It's not possible to give everyone the absolute bestest time-on-clock, every time. But it IS possible to pump up frequencies into the CBD, find offsets for some of the inequities, and offer up a variety of solutions for a neighborhood. For example, Needham Line conversion isn't just about Orange or SW Corridor; the ability to turn local buses at a Rozzie Sq. transfer enormously improves neighborhood transit, enormously improves traffic on Lower Washington out of Forest Hills, and enormously improves the congestion at FH that's slowly choking the terminal to death. But if we're so squeamish that the Orange Line takes longer on a stopwatch to get to Back Bay Station than the absolutely broken-and-unimprovable CR frequencies...who's looking at aggregate improvements? That energy is all getting sucked up by Back Bay theoreticals. It can absolutely kill RER dead if those obsessions of theoretical losses take bandwidth away from finding aggregately better solutions.

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(Though it would be fair to point out that a Red extension would offer a one-seat ride between Cambridge and Hyde Park -- that'd be fair.)
Now...since it's bottom-barrel on the priority pile, analyzing when things like this start to become a driver in the neighborhood can chart its rise off the bottom of that pile. Realistically, it's nowhere near strong enough a draw in the forseeable future. But consider NSRL being able to pair-match Fairmount with something up north. Unless that northside something is the Fitchburg Line hitting Porter, Cambridge isn't a place they'll ever see without transferring to Red. And Fitchburg is the MOST geographically awkward of the available northside pairings, so it's more likely to be Reading or Lowell drawing that assignment. OK...now you've got somewhat of an inequity post-NSRL leaving an itch to scratch. Does that lift a Red Mattapan-HP off the bottom of the pile?

I won't speculate if after that cosmic realignment it's got enough juice to possibly proceed, but its chances probably get better when NSRL itself isn't enough (because of those chance inequities) to put Cambridge jobs in adequate reach.


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Yeah, there's no disagreement here. The schedule from downtown definitely will be worse on a Red Line extension, but it won't be unusable. But it's a middling pitch. If you want to extend the Red Line past Mattapan, I think it's a stronger argument to position it as the first phase of an extension to Dedham, Roslindale Village (via Cummins Hwy, absolutely a crazy pitch), Route 128 or somewhere on the Franklin Line.
As above, schedule difference is much more muted than you initially factored.

There isn't a lot of Crazy Pitching possible here. It's pretty much tunnel under River St. or deep bore using the favorable bedrock and lack of in-tunnel stations to keep cost down, then quad up the Fairmount Line from the first Neponset crossing to the existing commuter rail yard. Then hop across to go to Dedham Ctr. on the grade separated branch.
  • Cummins Hwy. gets too narrow by the cemetery and densely abutted in Rozzie to be of use. Becomes "hard" tunneling the likes of which we have to avoid in the city to steer clear of major cost blowouts. Try BRT. Or a Blue Hill Ave. + traffic-calmed Morton St. trolley to Forest Hills, which might be a solution to the problem of trying to force-fit a Dudley-Mattapan streetcar on much narrower streets.
  • 128 isn't reachable to the south on rapid transit. 4 track berths on the NEC ROW are all claimed to Westwood for Amtrak + RER traffic increases, and there's water on both sides of the trackbed prohibiting any further expansion. Franklin main is on an unexpandable 2-track swamp embankment between Endicott and Dedham Corporate that's also cosmically no-go on EIS'ing. Dedham Corporate WILL, however, get :15 frequencies thanks to Forge Park + Foxboro interlining. If Forge Park needs to run skip-stop for sake of end-to-end travel times, it also isn't a big deal to send a Fairmount short-turn local to Corporate to preserve the headway.
No paths left to speak of with all that struck down...just your typical Civil Engineering Strongman stuff that's more meant to be admired on Google Map Maker than spoken of in terms of future feasibility.
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Old 06-01-2019, 11:14 PM   #3550
Riverside
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

^ A lot of good stuff in the above, thanks. But one thing I'm not clear on. You say Urban Rail is 4tph, except in the terminal zone and rare areas of high interlining. But you also note that Dedham Corporate itself will get 4tph due to interlining Foxboro + Forge Park (presumably each at 2tph). Wouldn't the Fairmount/Readville short-turns then interline with those 4tph and get us to 10-minute headways if not better?

And likewise -- I've seen discussions where the NEC north of Canton Junction would get the *combined* headways of 15-minute frequencies to Stoughton and to Providence. Which would give you 7.5 minute frequencies on the NEC at Readville, which is pretty damn close to rapid transit standards for our area. (Compare frequencies at Quincy Adams.)

This, by the way, goes back to our electrification discussion a few weeks back. I made an off-hand reference to Stoughton being useful as a short-turn on the NEC to support Urban Rail, and you pointed out that Urban Rail isn't intended for the NEC. And I suppose that's true -- unlike the Midland or B&A corridors, the NEC would be distinguished by near-non-stop service between 128 and Downtown -- i.e. Route 128, Readville, Ruggles -- as opposed to rapid transit-esque stop spacing every mile or so. So it's not "Urban Rail" in the same way. But it would be near-rapid transit frequencies, and those 6tph+ headways along the NEC are easier to hit with short-turns at Stoughton.

(Of course, electrification isn't required to get higher-frequency service on Stoughton, especially if you run shorter [lighter] trains. And, as you pointed out then, given the choice between electrifying Stoughton and electrifying the B&A, I agree that it's better to electrify the route to Riverside and just comingle diesel and electric on the NEC for the time being.)

EDIT: Also -- don't overread into my points about access to Longwood/Back Bay. I really am not trying to put a prioritization or value on it -- it's just an unusually clear cut case of, as you say, a drawback microcosm.

One more EDIT: To be clear -- if the Fairmount Indigo really is hard-capped at 4tph, and especially if there is any irregularity in that frequency, then yes, I agree Red-to-Hyde Park makes much more sense.

Last edited by Riverside; 06-01-2019 at 11:40 PM.
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Old 06-02-2019, 12:47 AM   #3551
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riverside View Post
^ A lot of good stuff in the above, thanks. But one thing I'm not clear on. You say Urban Rail is 4tph, except in the terminal zone and rare areas of high interlining. But you also note that Dedham Corporate itself will get 4tph due to interlining Foxboro + Forge Park (presumably each at 2tph). Wouldn't the Fairmount/Readville short-turns then interline with those 4tph and get us to 10-minute headways if not better?
No. We don't have enough capacity on the current system...on either side. Forge Park + Foxboro interlining is a concession to the SS terminal district's limitations in that both :30 Regional Rail schedules have to overlap to net the baseline :15 frequency. They're basically maxing out what the system will bear getting Forge Park off the NEC and placed onto somewhat more favorable platform slotting @ SS on the Fairmount berths...but it's accelerating the speedup into the brick wall we hit unless South Station Expansion comes pronto.

Now, there's a lot still to work out on the details. Forge Park gets too long a schedule if it picks up all the Fairmount local stops, and straight-up locals would give places like Islington and Windsor Gardens :15 frequencies they arguably don't need. So there's likely to be some trading off with skip-stopping and backfill of Fairmount short-turn slots to get things back into equilibrium, as well as some limited retained use of the NEC-Franklin routing when traffic conditions are favorable (though it won't any longer be regular enough to set a clock to). Some lines will be easier to balance than others, some stations will get a little underrepresented and some a little overrepresented. It also makes line-by-line TPH a useless metric because skip-stopping and alt-routing will be in-play some places but not others. TPH's may look high track occupancy -wise, but the baseline per stop frequency where you can board/alight the train is the only thing that truly matters. That's where RER tries to hold to :15 bi-directional at the inner-zone stops and :30 bi-directional points at the outer stops. By RER principles those frequencies are a baseline that has to be upheld with as few exceptions as possible. So it is possible that terminal capacity limitations will force Forge Park riders into a longer trip making many more stops as a local. Not probable, mind you, because of the amount of granular schedule tinkering yet to come...but possible as a downside. Some quasi-losers in the deal may have to put up with longer trips as a byproduct of the better frequencies. A trade most commuters would make, but a tradeoff nonetheless.

This is all a part of those inequities that have to be pounded out with the traffic modeling grunt work, community input, and other considerations that have to come before implementing. It's too early to speculate how each schedule will be hashed at a granular level...and re-hashed and re-hashed again to correct the kinks. The target service (:15 inner/:30 outer) is what all the capital outlays for adopting RER in the first place are about, and the only thing we need to be concerned about right this second as they mull adoption.

What you can be reasonably sure of is that because we're dealing with a thoroughly saturated terminal district, there's no way sub- :15 Fairmount frequencies are ever going to be a thing at any point before NSRL is built and we're fileting service upstairs/downstairs to dual terminals to their fullest extent. So, that's your baseline for a minimum of 20 years...probably much longer.

Quote:
And likewise -- I've seen discussions where the NEC north of Canton Junction would get the *combined* headways of 15-minute frequencies to Stoughton and to Providence. Which would give you 7.5 minute frequencies on the NEC at Readville, which is pretty damn close to rapid transit standards for our area. (Compare frequencies at Quincy Adams.)
No. Not 7.5 minutes. :30 to Providence interlined with :30 to Stoughton = :15. It's contingent on Forge Park getting the heave-ho off the NEC, the Needham-vs.-SW Corridor crisis getting handled, and Track 4 Forest Hills-Westwood (with service levels to 'squished' Hyde Park a direct causualty) happening. As well as contingent on un-breaking the hugely flawed South Coast Rail design to pick back up all the NEC stops it's dropping. Then and only then can you interline for :15 frequencies to Westwood...but no more without NSRL+surface double-dipping because the terminal district is the next hard limiter to tackle.

In reality most non-BBY stops are going to see lesser frequencies. If South Coast FAIL can't be fixed Ruggles thru Canton are going to be big omissions on the Stoughton schedules. 3-track Ruggles may *occasionally* (<-- emphasis) need to express a Providence thru if track occupancy would otherwise deprive Amtrak of the last available passing track. SCR has to be bailed out of its design problems or else every Stoughton train starts skipping. Hyde Park is crippled-for-life with the squished layout, definitely unsuitable even for "fixed" SCR trains and a pass on a large share of Providence slots as well because of crossover conflicts. Readville, if reanimated because HP can't be, may be able to take most Providence trains, most "fixed" SCR trains (but none whatsoever if it isn't fixed), and select Forge Park-via-NEC backfill slots. Westwood is dependent on SCR being fixed; otherwise it's a skip.

It's a deep list of things that *have* to break perfectly right in order for the current system to flush the NEC full of slots that functionally net a real-deal :15 frequency at enough stops. Needham fix, Franklin fix, sacrificing Hyde Park because the traffic conflicts are too much, SCR-Stoughton fix so the Stoughton trains don't have to uselessly express from BBY to Easton. Under the current system you're looking at stabilizing Ruggles + Westwood, troubleshooting the loss (de facto or actual) of HP with Readville what-if's, and sending SCR-Stoughton back to the drawing board so its forced expressing doesn't lay waste to everything else. Forget Forest Hills usage; forget HP enhancements; forget Jamaica-ization of Ruggles. First task is playing defense on traffic management. Increasing frequencies (meaningful or incidental) at those stops is not going to be something that's possible until post-NSRL when service levels are filling out the new dual terminal districts.

Quote:
This, by the way, goes back to our electrification discussion a few weeks back. I made an off-hand reference to Stoughton being useful as a short-turn on the NEC to support Urban Rail, and you pointed out that Urban Rail isn't intended for the NEC. And I suppose that's true -- unlike the Midland or B&A corridors, the NEC would be distinguished by near-non-stop service between 128 and Downtown -- i.e. Route 128, Readville, Ruggles -- as opposed to rapid transit-esque stop spacing every mile or so. So it's not "Urban Rail" in the same way. But it would be near-rapid transit frequencies, and those 6tph+ headways along the NEC are easier to hit with short-turns at Stoughton.
See above. It's not Urban Rail *yet* because there's lots of defense to play to stabilize Providence/Stoughton scheduling priority before the :15 headway baseline resembles anything stable enough at enough stops to throw away the paper schedule. Such as moving the other two branches off, and making sure SCR doesn't destroy everything by depriving those stops of their Stoughton trains. And even then you still can't make it work for Hyde Park or Forest Hills, so those stations are going to have to go by the boards instead of being featured players. It's not comparable to rapid transit if Hyde Park can only be served on a widely variable 25-35 minutes off that conflict-prone track layout while Ruggles pretty reliably chimes in every 15. Short-turns aren't going to save you there at backfilling slots; if it could the ideally-situated Westwood Industrial Track next to 128 Station is an even easier reach than Stoughton (and its SCR-related question marks). But the stops in question end up under-served because the railroad is already well beyond capacity for staging that many crossover moves.

Quote:
(Of course, electrification isn't required to get higher-frequency service on Stoughton, especially if you run shorter [lighter] trains. And, as you pointed out then, given the choice between electrifying Stoughton and electrifying the B&A, I agree that it's better to electrify the route to Riverside and just comingle diesel and electric on the NEC for the time being.)
As above, the limiter is tougher than short-turns can fix. Remove Needham. Re-route Forge Park. Do SSX (the sensible track/platforms part, not the real estate empire-building part that's exploding the price) so Purple sets aren't so bottled up by cross-cutting Amtrak moves. Fix the SCR design (see related threads for how it can be done...and why MassDOT doesn't seem to give a shit about fixing it). Either squeeze hard for space for a 4-track/2 side-platform Hyde Park setup or let it die (because its feasible service levels will). Quad-track past 128 station. Tri-track the NEC side of Canton Junction with a center Amtrak passer before the Viaduct (plenty of room).

The literal only reason not to electrify Stoughton now is that we have no clue where the substation needs to go unless there's an answer on whether SCR is getting built at all. And, thus, if SCR is getting built "broken" or "fixed". That sub would be sitting on the Canton-Stoughton town line at the power lines that cross the Island St. industrial park if the line were staying put forever at Stoughton...but would be sited 10 miles further south off Route 106 in Easton behind Southeastern Regional Vocational Tech HS if the line were rejoined to its Taunton end. Since subs are the most expensive electrification components, it's pointless to try to guess the outcome. You can only electrify it when you have a firm and forever thumbs-up/thumbs-down on SCR. As long as they're continuing to kick the can with this Middleboro-then-Stoughton two-step, all hands are tied.

Last edited by F-Line to Dudley; 06-02-2019 at 01:05 AM.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:35 PM   #3552
Riverside
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riverside
This, by the way, goes back to our electrification discussion a few weeks back. I made an off-hand reference to Stoughton being useful as a short-turn on the NEC to support Urban Rail, and you pointed out that Urban Rail isn't intended for the NEC. And I suppose that's true -- unlike the Midland or B&A corridors, the NEC would be distinguished by near-non-stop service between 128 and Downtown -- i.e. Route 128, Readville, Ruggles -- as opposed to rapid transit-esque stop spacing every mile or so. So it's not "Urban Rail" in the same way. But it would be near-rapid transit frequencies, and those 6tph+ headways along the NEC are easier to hit with short-turns at Stoughton.
Quote:
Originally Posted by F-Line to Dudley View Post
See above. It's not Urban Rail *yet* because there's lots of defense to play to stabilize Providence/Stoughton scheduling priority before the :15 headway baseline resembles anything stable enough at enough stops to throw away the paper schedule. Such as moving the other two branches off, and making sure SCR doesn't destroy everything by depriving those stops of their Stoughton trains. And even then you still can't make it work for Hyde Park or Forest Hills, so those stations are going to have to go by the boards instead of being featured players. It's not comparable to rapid transit if Hyde Park can only be served on a widely variable 25-35 minutes off that conflict-prone track layout while Ruggles pretty reliably chimes in every 15. Short-turns aren't going to save you there at backfilling slots; if it could the ideally-situated Westwood Industrial Track next to 128 Station is an even easier reach than Stoughton (and its SCR-related question marks). But the stops in question end up under-served because the railroad is already well beyond capacity for staging that many crossover moves.
I don't disagree with you at all. But again, you're arguing against things I didn't actually say. I expressly (no pun intended) excluded both Forest Hills and Hyde Park, and literally described the same thing you are: nonstop service between Readville and Ruggles. Again, sometimes seems like you didn't actually read what I wrote.

In any case, this brings up another broader question. Since the dawn of time (or at least since Van first started posting them back in early '00s), all of our future maps have pretty reliably included an "Indigo Line" between South Station and Readville via Fairmount, indicated in the same style as the Red, Orange, Blue and Green Line -- i.e. as "rapid transit." Now, most (though not all) of those proposals essentially imagined what we are talking about today -- mainline rolling stock with more characters of rapid transit than commuter rail. Higher frequencies, all-door boarding, fare integration. But back then, we were mainly imagining such innovations as being restricted to the Fairmount Line.

Then we talked about Indigoing the B&A out to Riverside. That made sense too, and now our Indigo Line had two "branches", in a little bit of an odd topology, compared to the "other" rapid transit lines. But the Indigo Line still was "special" enough to distinguish from commuter rail.

Well, now, here we are today. We've articulated that an Indigo-ified Fairmount Line has fare integration, all-door boarding and a train pretty reliably every 15 minutes. Cool, so let's make that an Indigo Line and add it to the map.

But wait, now we've also said the same thing about the B&A to Riverside. Okay, that's fine, add another branch, just like we did 15 years ago.

Hmm, but now that we think about it, suburban service out towards Norwood is also going to look similar to our first two "Indigo Lines". Should our Fairmount Indigo Line be extended out that way on our maps? And where should it stop -- Dedham Corp, Norwood Central, Walpole?

And it looks like Ruggles probably will have pretty high frequency service to Back Bay and South Station, not that different from any station on the Fairmount. And probably the same can be said for Readville and maybe Route 128. Do we add an Indigo Line branch running alongside the Orange Line from Back Bay to Ruggles to Readville to Route 128? Or just to Ruggles?

And what about the northside? Do we add Indigo Lines from North Station to Weston/128, Anderson/Woburn, Reading/93, and Salem?

This of course is ultimately a trivial question. The maps and branding can be figured out when the time comes. But it has been interesting to see over the years how different maps have experimented with this. Of course, if we are not careful, we will end up with a subway map that is a sprawling mass of indigo, green and silver lines, with a quaint trio of comparatively simple blue, orange and red lines.

I think I'd want separate colors for the various Indigo/RER services -- Fairmount/Norwood could remain Indigo, but perhaps other lines could use similar "boutique" colors -- I'm thinking the maroons, cyans, teals and light greens of the world. Perhaps with a medium thickness between the current rapid transit thickness and commuter rail?

(Of course, the dream would be for an RER line to be visualized as the convergence of two or more thin suburban rail lines into a thicker urban rail line. Demonstrates contiguous service but highlights the change in quality.)
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Old 06-04-2019, 05:43 AM   #3553
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by Riverside View Post
I don't disagree with you at all. But again, you're arguing against things I didn't actually say. I expressly (no pun intended) excluded both Forest Hills and Hyde Park, and literally described the same thing you are: nonstop service between Readville and Ruggles. Again, sometimes seems like you didn't actually read what I wrote.

In any case, this brings up another broader question. Since the dawn of time (or at least since Van first started posting them back in early '00s), all of our future maps have pretty reliably included an "Indigo Line" between South Station and Readville via Fairmount, indicated in the same style as the Red, Orange, Blue and Green Line -- i.e. as "rapid transit." Now, most (though not all) of those proposals essentially imagined what we are talking about today -- mainline rolling stock with more characters of rapid transit than commuter rail. Higher frequencies, all-door boarding, fare integration. But back then, we were mainly imagining such innovations as being restricted to the Fairmount Line.

Then we talked about Indigoing the B&A out to Riverside. That made sense too, and now our Indigo Line had two "branches", in a little bit of an odd topology, compared to the "other" rapid transit lines. But the Indigo Line still was "special" enough to distinguish from commuter rail.

Well, now, here we are today. We've articulated that an Indigo-ified Fairmount Line has fare integration, all-door boarding and a train pretty reliably every 15 minutes. Cool, so let's make that an Indigo Line and add it to the map.

But wait, now we've also said the same thing about the B&A to Riverside. Okay, that's fine, add another branch, just like we did 15 years ago.

Hmm, but now that we think about it, suburban service out towards Norwood is also going to look similar to our first two "Indigo Lines". Should our Fairmount Indigo Line be extended out that way on our maps? And where should it stop -- Dedham Corp, Norwood Central, Walpole?

And it looks like Ruggles probably will have pretty high frequency service to Back Bay and South Station, not that different from any station on the Fairmount. And probably the same can be said for Readville and maybe Route 128. Do we add an Indigo Line branch running alongside the Orange Line from Back Bay to Ruggles to Readville to Route 128? Or just to Ruggles?

And what about the northside? Do we add Indigo Lines from North Station to Weston/128, Anderson/Woburn, Reading/93, and Salem?

This of course is ultimately a trivial question. The maps and branding can be figured out when the time comes. But it has been interesting to see over the years how different maps have experimented with this. Of course, if we are not careful, we will end up with a subway map that is a sprawling mass of indigo, green and silver lines, with a quaint trio of comparatively simple blue, orange and red lines.

I think I'd want separate colors for the various Indigo/RER services -- Fairmount/Norwood could remain Indigo, but perhaps other lines could use similar "boutique" colors -- I'm thinking the maroons, cyans, teals and light greens of the world. Perhaps with a medium thickness between the current rapid transit thickness and commuter rail?

(Of course, the dream would be for an RER line to be visualized as the convergence of two or more thin suburban rail lines into a thicker urban rail line. Demonstrates contiguous service but highlights the change in quality.)
"To Indigo or To Not Indigo" is more a branding question you can serve up under your own marketing angle for wayfinding optics. The schedule and ops practices set the service levels for the system at the basic :30 vs. :15 vs. [other square-peg or very long-haul remainders] tiers. With some of the Alternatives (see linkied PDF further below) zeroing in more on key stations vs. skips at ranking who gets prioritized headways and others focusing more on linear service-level zones. Either approach would require very different spider map designs for wayfinding. Then there are the hybridized approaches that have some key stop prioritization and some linear zone prioritization, which requires a different sort of map altogether (international examples abound, however). Then there's going to be the need to account for the necessary exceptions-to-rule in the individual schedules that are necessarily implemented for keeping the system in balance. For example:
  • Presenting the Ruggles vs. HP headway dilemma on a linear line map that would be misleading if it implied the headways could physically be the same at each stop.
  • Depicting cherry-picked long-haul Worcester schedule pickups of Yawkey and/or West on a schedule that otherwise skips all the Urban Rail stops for travel time's sake.
  • Depicting the same Worcester scenario where the cherry-picked pickups change from trip-to-trip (e.g. every 5th Worcester train picking up Boston Landing but dropping West...or some asterisk variation like that).
  • Treating the winners/losers from the new alignment, like the potential need for Forge Park to do some skip-stopping to make up travel time on a long schedule, compensated by any needed Readville short-turn backfills. Do station dots get depicted smaller on a skip? Larger on a double-up? Is this where you have to make sense of the fact that Islington and Windsor Gardens probably don't need :15 interlined frequencies while the two Norwoods and Walpole do?
  • Treating the fact that schedules are a changeable thing, and that perfecting RER will require several schedule revisions of post-adoption tinkering to pound out the kinks. How do you release a spider map that'll last a solid 5-10 years for purposes of hanging in the map slot of any station platform when they'll be in a constant process of fussing around with schedule loose ends and recalibrations to individual stops?
Practically speaking, it's way too early to hash out spider map methodology until the final service Alternative is adopted and they go more granular at the individual line schedules to balance out winners and losers. At that point you can probably take your pick of nearest service match amongst RER spider maps worldwide, apply the Cambridge Seven template onto it, and make it an organic T wayfinding map. But we have to know the adoption status and have enough preliminary picture of the exceptions-to-rule to be able to develop an elastic enough map to handle change. The nip/tuck process of getting every corner of the system in lasting equilibrium will be a work-in-progress.


As for map examples. . .

Deval Patrick's 2024 Indigoes map looked like this with an actual color code:



...while the Rail Vision Committee has a potpurri of potential alternatives (shown for highlighting service, not marketing eye-candy, purposes): https://cdn.mbta.com/sites/default/f...essible-v2.pdf.

The only reason why the Rail Vision hasn't been hashed out yet here vs. the early "Indigoes" branding above is that the Rail Vision is a real fleshed-out service study while the 2024 map was a rather naked marketing ploy to curry the Olympic Committee's favor with some sizzle. Which is why it completely disappeared virtually the second B24 collapsed. The "Indigoes" presentation never even attempted to figure out things like how you were going to sustain :15 frequencies on the extreme capacity-limited Grand Junction for that West-North Station shuttle. It also never attempted to tackle the electrification question, interchangeably marketing itself as the "DMU lines" around an RFP'd purchase of bulky Nippon-Sharyo FRA-compliant fleet that never ended up being seriously pursued (and now that N-S and the FRA-compliant DMU market itself has collapsed for the near-term, won't). Cracks started appearing almost immediately that it was a totally un-serious proposal never intended for serious pursuit unless the Olympics became some other Administration's funding problem. Then somebody would've had to run for their lives to try to glue together a service plan out of the marketing sizzle and reckon with the broken pieces.

Give the advocacy folks like TransitMatters enormous credit for grabbing the fumble and running with it at laser-like focus to plant the talking points in public consciousness. And give the T/MassDOT (and even a necessary--if skeptical--tip of hat to Baker/Pollack/FCMB) credit for no small amount of bravery resisting institutional "Not Invented Here" bias for giving the Rail Vision study a full and even-handed airing. We're tantalizingly close to actually netting the real deal. Then the fun begins: melting down aB's server host with 100 pages of Crazy Cambridge Seven Spider Maps designs done up in Photoshop or Illustrator . Anyone with public-domain template/widget sets to share for the rest of us more than welcome to upload.
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Old 06-14-2019, 01:02 PM   #3554
JohnAKeith
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

If anyone's looking for a doctoral thesis, can you write up about the different Boston-Cape Cod-Provincetown railroads that used to go down Cape? Piecing together the different Wikipedia entries on the different lines and the timing of it all is near impossible.

Even more, would someone want to imagine a replacement rail line either using the existing railroads to Bourne and redoing the Old Colony rail line after that (through .. people's back yards in places), or something brand new?

For purely selfish reasons, an alternative to get to the Cape is sorely needed, and in Provincetown, desperately.

To Provincetown, there are already a slew of options.

1) car cost to own & operate a car plus gas (120 miles ea. direction) 2.5 hours - 4.0 hours
2) private bus company $64 3.25 hours - 5.0 hours (makes stops on the way)
3) ferry $90 1 hour and 40 minutes
4) plane $356 30 minutes

Estimates for 7/18/2019 through 7/25/2019, round-trip prices
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Old 06-14-2019, 07:09 PM   #3555
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnAKeith View Post
If anyone's looking for a doctoral thesis, can you write up about the different Boston-Cape Cod-Provincetown railroads that used to go down Cape? Piecing together the different Wikipedia entries on the different lines and the timing of it all is near impossible.

Even more, would someone want to imagine a replacement rail line either using the existing railroads to Bourne and redoing the Old Colony rail line after that (through .. people's back yards in places), or something brand new?

For purely selfish reasons, an alternative to get to the Cape is sorely needed, and in Provincetown, desperately.

To Provincetown, there are already a slew of options.

1) car cost to own & operate a car plus gas (120 miles ea. direction) 2.5 hours - 4.0 hours
2) private bus company $64 3.25 hours - 5.0 hours (makes stops on the way)
3) ferry $90 1 hour and 40 minutes
4) plane $356 30 minutes

Estimates for 7/18/2019 through 7/25/2019, round-trip prices
There was 1 mainline and 4 branches:
  • Cape Mainline: Middleboro to Provincetown RR docks. Today: active to Yarmouth Transfer Station (Cape trash train), Cape Rail Trail to Wellfleet, ROW fragmented to Provincetown. Purchased from Conrail by MassDOT, 1976 (South Dennis-North Eastham) & 1981 (Middleboro-South Dennis). Federal gov't owns small portion in Wellfleet.
  • Chatham Branch: Harwich Jct. to downtown Chatham. Today: power line ROW w/ rail trail, except @ Chatham Municipal Airport built on top of ROW. Owned by utility company.
  • Hyannis Branch: Yarmouth Jct. to RR docks on water. Today: active to Hyannis Transportation Center downtown; downtown to docks traced by Old Colony Rd., docks extant but partially submerged. Active portion purchased from Conrail by MassDOT, 1981.
  • Falmouth Branch: Cape Jct. to Woods Hole. Today: active to North Falmouth; rest is Shining Sea Bikeway trail. Cape Jct. to Falmouth Depot purchased from Conrail by MassDOT, 1981. Falmouth Depot to Woods Hole purchased from Conrail by Town of Falmouth, 1976.
  • Otis Branch: Spur off Falmouth Branch @ N. Falmouth to Otis AFB and various tracks on base. Today: active for Falmouth Transfer Station freight, base spur scheduled for rehabilitation; numerous derelict tracks on base. Purchased from U.S. Military by MassDOT, 2015.

Nearest I can find for abandonment dates. . .

Mainline
  • Provincetown downtown to Provincetown docks: abandoned 1938 by NYNH&H. Ownership lapsed.
  • North Eastham to Provincetown: abandoned 1960 by NYNH&H. Ownership past US 6 crossing in Wellfleet is lapsed, ROW heavily fragmented. Trailed to Wellfleet. Not formally landbanked.
  • South Dennis to North Eastham abandoned 1966 by NYNH&H. Trailed. Not formally landbanked (too early), but intact.
  • Yarmouth to South Dennis. Out-of-service 1997-2012; then formally landbanked for trail extension.
Chatham Br.
  • Abandoned 1937. Reclaimed for power lines; fully intact except at airport. Not formally landbanked.
Hyannis Br.
  • Downtown to Hyannisport docks: abandoned 1930's with switch from Hyannisport to Hyannis Harbor as main steamship dock. ROW obliterated by road.
Falmouth Br.
  • Falmouth Depot to Woods Hole abandoned 1969 by Penn Central. Trail has been in place since 1977. Not formally landbanked (too early).
  • North Falmouth to Falmouth Depot out-of-service 1989-2006, then formally landbanked for trail extension.

Passenger service:

New York, New Haven & Hartford
  • Chatham Branch: ended 1937. Replaced by NYNH&H-sponsored connecting bus from Hyannis.
  • Yarmouth-Provincetown: ended 1938, except for one-season return in 1940. Replaced by NYNH&H-sponsored connecting bus from Hyannis.
  • Boston-Hyannis: full commuter rail schedule ended 1958.
  • Boston-Woods Hole: full commuter rail schedule ended 1958.
  • NY-Hyannis / NY-Woods Hole: seasonal Day Cape Codder, Night Cape Codder, Neptune trains split at Buzzards Bay into separate Hyannis and Woods Hole halves.Ended 1940; returned 1948-58; returned 1960-64.
  • Washington, D.C.-Hyannis: thru-running of Cape Codders to D.C. on Pennsylvania RR to 1958.
Amtrak Cape Codder
1986-1996, seasonally. Schedules split between NY-Hyannis and Washington-Hyannis. Stops north of Providence at Taunton, Wareham, Buzzards Bay, East Sandwich, West Barnstable, Hyannis. ADA mini-high platforms @ E. Sandwich, W. Barnstable + some sections of platform @ Buzzards Bay, Hyannis are Amtrak-origin, now maintained by Cape Cod Central RR.

Cape Cod & Hyannis RR

1981-1988, seasonally with MassDOT subsidy. Folded 1989 with loss of subsidy (owners were bilking the state by pocketing some of the subsidy, which made MassDOT real mad.)
  • E. Sandwich-Hyannis, 1981-88.
  • Buzzards Bay-Falmouth Depot, 1982-84, 1986-88. Short-turn routing later absorbed by Braintree & Attleboro services. Catumet stop added 1988.
  • Braintree-Hyannis, 1984-88 + Braintree-Falmouth, 1984, 1986-88. Stops: Holbrook/Randolph, Brockton, Bridgewater (old station), Middleboro (old station), Wareham (Amtrak station), Buzzards Bay + on-Cape stations. Red Line transfer required because Neponset River RR bridge not yet rebuilt. (Note: 3-hour trip because of un-upgraded track to Middleboro).
  • Attleboro-Hyannis + Attleboro-Falmouth, 1988. Attleboro Station + Amtrak routing and Taunton Station to capture RI/South Coast patronage.
(misc. excursions)
  • Bay Colony RR, then- freight operators on the Cape, ran some one-off excursions 1989-98 to keep interest nominally alive.
  • At this point the Middleboro Line was still under discussion for terminating in Wareham, before local resistance retreated it to Middleboro.
Cape Cod Central RR
1999-present, (long) seasonal. 2007-present they have also had the freight franchise on the Cape under the Mass Coastal RR reporting mark.
  • Buzzards Bay-Hyannis. Primarily the dinner train, but other misc. excursions. Use Buzzards Bay, East Sandwich, West Barnstable, and Hyannis stations.
  • Buzzards Bay-North Falmouth. One-off (but increasing) excursions on Falmouth Branch. No official stations on branch that passengers can use, though they get Bourne permission to use the non-ADA Catumet and (rarely) Monument Beach platforms.
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Old 06-15-2019, 12:39 PM   #3556
tysmith95
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

I don't see there being any appetite for a Provincetown train from Boston, since the ferry would be much faster.
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Old 06-15-2019, 03:05 PM   #3557
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
I don't see there being any appetite for a Provincetown train from Boston, since the ferry would be much faster.
Yeah...that's why the old P'town and Chatham trains went belly-up so early. The 1930 NYNH&H timetable shows Boston-Provincetown taking 4:25, which is close to what it takes for a Northeast Regional to go from Boston to New York. Boston-Chatham took 3:30. Each made 8 mainland stops before crossing the Canal: Braintree, Brockton, Bridgewater (old), Middleboro (old), Tremont (Wareham), Wareham, Onset (Wareham), Buzzards Bay. The 1943 NYNH&H track bulletin--which comes after deferred maintenance had started exerting small effects--shows speed limits of 60+ MPH everywhere on the mainland (consistent with the Buzzards Bay CR study projecting 79 MPH south of Middleboro), 50 MPH to Yarmouth Jct. (consistent with projected Cape Flyer maxes after all state-of-repair tasks are complete), and a very slow 35 MPH from Yarmouth to Provincetown. No info available on Chatham Branch, but it was probably maintained to the same track class so no greater than 35 MPH is likely. Speeds were probably 5-10 MPH better at their absolute heyday, but it was still a very slow trip with tip-top maintenance and higher track class stacked to the part of the line used by the heavily patronized Hyannis and Woods Hole trains.

Another part of the problem was that the Cape Main follows a fairly diffuse population spread--today and yesteryear--while the big concentrations at Falmouth, Hyannis, and Chatham are/were on the branchlines. The P'town train made a pick-'em selection of up to 22 stops on-Cape because there were little pockets everywhere, but no big anchors. That made an already long schedule virtually untenable.

So there have always been viability concerns about the schedule beyond Falmouth and Hyannis, and it's hard to see re-use for trains of the preserved old ROW's fetching flies for patronage when the ferries are that much faster. The shortsighted truncation of the Falmouth Branch at North Falmouth is problematic because of the way it shears a useful line off from the huge downtown bus station and Steamship Authority shuttle (the downtown-Woods Hole segment loss hurts less because of the SA's rigorous transit footprint). But generally speaking the biggest bang comes from working with what we have: a reasonably fast spine to Hyannis, multimodal connections (bus, ferry, air) to crank up a notch in tandem, and leveraging Cape Cod Central to help tap the Falmouth Branch for everything it can give as a beneficial contributor (necessary before making any Crazy Transit asks for de-abandonment of the 6 miles back to downtown).
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:30 AM   #3558
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: Crazy Transit Pitches

FWIW, here are the current and former station sites we have to work with on-Cape. . .

Mainline
  • Bourne (historic) -- Located at site of old canal bridge (Street View vantage point looks across to "Old Bridge St." on mainland side) prior to 1935 canal widening. 1/2 mile west of current Bourne Bridge. Appears to have been dropped from schedules when old bridge was demolished. Not a station option today because of quiet side street placement.
  • Bourne/Aptucxet (opened 2019, temporary) -- Brand new temp station for Cape Flyer under Bourne Bridge at end of Canal Recreation Area parking lot. CCRTA and Steamship Authority bus connections onsite. Platform is a 1-car ADA high platform constructed out of jersey barriers and MassDOT surplus concrete slabs, with a metal wheelchair ramp. Constructed because of delays finding a suitable site for a permanent Bourne station. Aptucxet platform needs to be re-approved for use every year and platform materials only have lifespan of 3-5 years max, so not intended to be permanent station. Long, constrained driveway w/ limited turnaround room and very limited parking make it unsuitable long-term.
  • Bourne (proposed/stalled) -- Site behind Gallo Ice Arena has long been Cape Chamber of Commerce's preferred site for a permanent stop. Pluses: direct access to Sandwich Rd. with double driveways, easier access from Bourne Rotary (Aptucxet Station access cuts against the grain of the rotary ramps), far easier bus transfers, ample parking rarely used by arena in summer. Planning ran hot for the Gallo site 2015-2018 before access permissions deadlocked. Aptucxet was the very hasty interim solution to bypass the deadlock, but puts more pressure on a resolution for permanent stop.
  • Sagamore (historic) -- Lasted to end of NYNH&H service. Located 1/2 mile east of bridge at end of Freight House Rd., 1 block east of pre- canal widening predecessor bridge (dead giveaway: "Bridge St."). Had former brick station house + freight house. Site now an unused freight mini-yard for a propane dealer that no longer takes rail delivery.
    • No formal proposals for a modern Sagamore Station, but Cape officials have informally looked underneath the bridge at the town DPW lot and a couple crud properties as ripest possible location, given space and ease of access from the Mid-Cape Connector road (easier still if Exit 1C were taken off neighborhood streets in the WB direction and given a flyover onto the Connector road). Station spacing would be 2.5 miles from the Gallo Arena station site, and 2.7 miles from existing Sandwich Station.
  • Sandwich -- Historic station site w/ current facility 1980's MassDOT construction for Amtrak, now maintained by Cape Cod Central RR. 250 ft. platform w/ accessible 1-car mini-high, ADA-compliant, shelter, 20+ spaces, kiss-and-ride.
  • East Sandwich (historic) -- At 6A grade crossing. 2.7 miles from Sandwich station. Gone by late-1930's.
    • Not much nearby; wouldn't be any future candidate.
  • West Barnstable -- Historic restored station building run by town historical society, platform 1980's MassDOT construction for Amtrak now maintained by Cape Cod Central RR. 250 ft. platform w/ accessible 1-car mini-high, shelter at station building open during CCCR excursions, ADA-compliant. Large unstriped parking lot. Nearby access to US 6.
    • #2 rec, after Bourne, by Cape officials for adding to Cape Flyer.
    • 7.2 mi from Sandwich Station, 4.5 miles from former E. Sandwich station site. Very long station spacing, but density in between too sparse for an intermediate; CCRTA bus enhancements on 6A would cover any 'tweener needs.
  • Barnstable (historic) -- Behind Barnstable City Hall. Lasted to 1940. 3.5 mi. from W. Barnstable.
    • Poor access from Railroad Av., possibly solvable by moving site behind City Hall.
    • Very short crow-flies distance to Hyannis (RR takes more roundabout path), which may make increased bus frequencies out of Hyannis Transpo Ctr. a better deal.
  • Yarmouth (historic) -- Crammed inside the Yarmouth Jct. wye. Acted as union stop for Chatham/Provincetown and Hyannis trains. Lasted until end of NYNH&H service. 6.1 mi. from W. Barnstable (2.6 mi. from historic Barnstable), 3.2 mi. from Hyannis.
    • Unnecessary today with all mainline service running to Hyannis.
Hyannis Branch
Falmouth Branch
  • Gray Gables (historic) -- Dropped 1930's. Only 4/5 mile from next stop, Monument Beach; only 1.6 mi. from present-day Aptucxet on mainline.
  • Monument Beach -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service. Now used for one-off excursions with permission from private owners by CCCR. 350 ft. low, non-ADA platform w/ complete canopy.
    • Dense-ish neighborhood w/ direct access to Route 28.
  • Pocasset -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service. Platform 1.8 mi. from Monument Beach. Platform ruins owned by MassDOT for future use & reconstruction.
    • Dense-ish neighborhood with fair amount of mixed-use development.
  • Catumet -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service, and by Cape Cod & Hyannis RR for 1988 season. 300 ft. low, non-ADA platform rehabbed 1988, presently maintained by town historical society (owners of historic building). Used frequently by CCCR excursions. 1.9 miles from Pocasset.
  • North Falmouth -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service. Station site owned by MassDOT for future considerations. Now a (large) parking lot for the rail trail. 1.3 mi. from Catumet.
  • West Falmouth (landbanked) -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service. Now another conspicuously over-large parking lot for the rail trail. 3.3 mi from N. Falmouth.
  • Falmouth Depot (landbanked) -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service, and Cape Cod & Hyannis to end of service in 1988. Houses intercity bus terminal, w/ Steamship Authority park-and-bus lot on same block. Platforms upgraded 20 years ago to 500 ft. length w/ 1-car mini-high (never used) + full ADA compliance. 3.8 mi. from W. Falmouth.
  • Woods Hole (abandoned) -- Used by NYNH&H to end of commuter and intercity service. Platforms + layover yard located where Greyhound bus terminal currently is. 3.5 mi. from Falmouth.
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