Michigan Central Station

Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, gprimr1, Amtrak67 of America, Tadman

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby Tadman » Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:50 pm

It's worth noting the new condition of Detroit. Over the last five years, the place has gone bonkers with growth. See my map below:

https://scontent-dft4-2.xx.fbcdn.net/v/ ... e=5A60B3ED

The red area has seen crazy growth. That's downtown. The purple area is seeing decent growth. The blue line is the Q_train. The orange line is Amtrak. The amtrak station is the X. GM is GM headquarters. GTW is the former Brush Street Station, FSUD is the former Fort Street Station. Neither is still there, nor are the buildings or tracks. As you can see, MCS and Amtrak are the only stations left and neither is within a mile of GM (the center of Detroit).
Tadman
 
Posts: 8389
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Michigan

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby bdawe » Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:22 pm

The scenario I could imagine MCS being especially useful would be one where Ontario's Toronto-Windsor HSR study actually amounts to something. Given that the Michigan Central Tunnel is not class-1 owned (mostly owned by a company called "Borealis Transportation"), it would seem possible that it could be repurposed for passenger rail if the tracks ever reached Windsor
B. Dawe's map of routes and urban populations https://brendandawe.carto.com/viz/80b9d ... /embed_map NOW updated with 2016 Canadian Populations
User avatar
bdawe
 
Posts: 507
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2015 1:06 pm
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby mdvle » Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:30 pm

Borealis Transportation renamed itself 2 weeks ago, it is now OMERS Infrastructure.

OMERS is the Ontario Municipal Employee pension plan.
mdvle
 
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 1:48 pm

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby mtuandrew » Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:48 pm

Gilbert B Norman wrote:what does lifting an object higher have to with getting from the Airport to Downtown? :-D

:P

Tadman wrote:It's worth noting the new condition of Detroit. Over the last five years, the place has gone bonkers with growth. See my map below:

https://scontent-dft4-2.xx.fbcdn.net/v/ ... e=5A60B3ED

The red area has seen crazy growth. That's downtown. The purple area is seeing decent growth. The blue line is the Q_train. The orange line is Amtrak. The amtrak station is the X. GM is GM headquarters. GTW is the former Brush Street Station, FSUD is the former Fort Street Station. Neither is still there, nor are the buildings or tracks. As you can see, MCS and Amtrak are the only stations left and neither is within a mile of GM (the center of Detroit).

Interesting to note that at one point, NYCRR and the Detroit city fathers had considered a boulevard from MCS to roundly the Wayne State University campus. Maybe with real estate off Woodward still sluggish, now's the time for the Morouns to reimagine that proposal?

bdawe wrote:Given that the Michigan Central Tunnel is not class-1 owned (mostly owned by a company called "Borealis Transportation")

Huh, learn something new everyday. Residue from Conrail?
User avatar
mtuandrew
 
Posts: 4009
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:59 am
Location: the Manassas Gap Independent Line

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby gokeefe » Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:53 pm

Tadman wrote:As you can see, MCS and Amtrak are the only stations left and neither is within a mile of GM (the center of Detroit).


Well, MCS certainly wins on proximity. Interesting advantage and also a contrast to the situation in Buffalo where the existing Amtrak station was much closer to downtown.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9688
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby mtuandrew » Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:42 pm

gokeefe wrote:Well, MCS certainly wins on proximity.

In raw distance to Campus Martius, yes, but the Amtrak station wins on attractions within walking distance and ease of access to downtown via Q Line. When you can convince Detroit to build a Michigan Avenue - Vernor Highway line, we'll talk!
User avatar
mtuandrew
 
Posts: 4009
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:59 am
Location: the Manassas Gap Independent Line

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby bdawe » Thu Sep 14, 2017 12:18 am

Apperently CN & CP bought the tunnel form Conrail, and then CN sold out to Borealis who then entered into a partnership with CP to build a new doublestack tunnel and convert the old tunnel to a truck tunnel. This was scuppered after the Canadian Government approved the Gordie Howe Bridge, and CP sold most of their interest in the tunnel to Borealis
B. Dawe's map of routes and urban populations https://brendandawe.carto.com/viz/80b9d ... /embed_map NOW updated with 2016 Canadian Populations
User avatar
bdawe
 
Posts: 507
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2015 1:06 pm
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Thu Sep 14, 2017 9:46 am

The Homecoming Dinner went off last night:

Fair Use:

.DETROIT-- For the first time since the 1980s, Michigan Central Station opened its doors to hundreds of guests.


The iconic Detroit building hosted the fourth annual Detroit Homecoming, an event produced by Crain's Communications Inc., the publisher of Crain's Detroit Business.

Detroit Homecoming invites hundreds of native Detroit business leaders from across the country back to Detroit to"re-engage and invest" in the city's future.

Lights welcomed guests Wednesday night for a kickoff dinner.

Now I think there are sociological issues that must be addressed when discussing Detroit's future passenger rail needs.

As this New York Times Opinion piece points out, not all of Detroit shares in the resurgence addressed in our discussion, or better put areas where Mr. Dunville and Mr. Me do not go lurking when we are there.

Fair Use:

..We are told, however, that it is a new day, that Detroit is no longer in decline. In a speech at the Mackinac Policy Conference this year, Mayor Duggan reported: “We are in the first period of growth in 50 or 60 years. People are moving back.”

What this comeback story omits is that although Detroit is 143 square miles, only 7.2 square miles are part of the revival. The real story is a tale of two cities. In downtown and surrounding areas, developers receive tax breaks, incentives and subsidies to renovate the portion of the city inhabited by newcomers. Meanwhile, the neighborhoods peopled by the residents who have been holding the city together through its economic turmoil are subject to monumental tax injustice.


When I was there last October, a DSO patron shared with me that Detroit "has much more acreage than any other city in the Reviving Rust Belt" (the best I remember her statement). As The Times' columnist points out, the revival comprises some 7.2 Sq miles of Detroit's 143.

The fact remains that Detroit will never have a 3M population again and must accept that it's current 710K is what it will have. Painful as it may be, Detroit will have to "decorporate" square mileage to that, say, of Cleveland (82) or Pittsburgh (58). That means no more city services - no cops, no firefighters, no water, no sewage, no traffic lights, no streetlights. In short a TS Eliott "Wasteland".
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 12830
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Aurora Sub; MP 18.71)

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby gokeefe » Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:23 am

Gilbert B Norman wrote:The fact remains that Detroit will never have a 3M population again and must accept that it's current 710K is what it will have. Painful as it may be, Detroit will have to "decorporate" square mileage to that, say, of Cleveland or Pittsburgh. That means no more city services - no cops, no firefighters, no water, no sewage, no traffic lights, no streetlights. In short a TS Eliott "Wasteland".


This suggestion goes against the prevailing trend of reurbanization. I doubt very much that it will come to fruition. Detroit's greatest asset is in fact its large area that can be rezoned, redeveloped and renewed. There are few places in the United States where a large mega-city could be built from scratch. Detroit is one of them and I think that with the right mix of conditions that it could happen.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9688
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:14 am

Much as I enjoy my visits to hear the Detroit Symphony,
I have two words of advice for those who hold that an Amazon HQ2 could be built using MCS as the catalyst for such; forget it.

As this Fair Use quotation from the linked CNBC article notes, Amazon wants 500K Sq Ft - doubt if it's there in the existing MCS structure:

..The company said its new second headquarters would initially need more than 500,000 square feet and up to 8 million square feet beyond 2027.


From the "Box Score" within the article, the only Amazon criteria Detroit meets is an international airport (even if it's more Delta's "change at Jamaica" than anything else). The absence of World Class university is questionable. This Illini will certainly give the Wolves credit for being that - and it's only forty miles away.

I still hold Detroit's best hope for success is to reduce its "Corporation Footprint" from the present 105 Sq. Mi. to about 60. That's big enough for the present 715K population. What happens to the area abandoned is what happens...urban farmland, some new incorporated municipalities, prairie....fun to speculate.

Finally, to close rail related, mass transportation is an Amazon criteria, but intercity rail is not. Just recognition of "Facts of Life", or a significant omission?
Gilbert B Norman
 
Posts: 12830
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2004 6:52 am
Location: Clarendon Hills, IL (BNSF Aurora Sub; MP 18.71)

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby Tadman » Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:38 am

On the face, Mr. Norman is right, but there are a few things going for Detroit:

1. They got their financial house in order compared to Chicago.
2. MCS may not have all the space they need, but Amazon could build near/around it. There is a lot of marginally used or empty space adjacent. You could also build over the NS or the approach tracks.
3. The Delta terminal at Detroit is really nice. It wouldn't be far fetched to see this be an O&D terminal rather than transfer.
4. The bones are there for true high speed to Toronto and Chicago

Here's the best part: if they bought MCS and turned it (and five surrounding acres) into Amazon headquarters, you'd have a new traffic center that could be great for placing a train station into. Ergo, trains come back to MCS.

It's a lot better than Maroun's idea of the gov't running lots of trains just to subsidize his building.
Tadman
 
Posts: 8389
Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Michigan

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby mtuandrew » Thu Sep 21, 2017 1:29 pm

Matty Maroun has a great deal of business ideas based on government subsidy and/or buyout of Maroun properties. If he and the city can attract Amazon though, that would be a huge catch for the city and the region. (One large enough to finally justify DET-ARB commuter rail and perhaps DET-LNS Spartan Service, and to help subsidize redevelopment of Mr. Norman's additional 45 sq mi within the existing City of Detroit.)
User avatar
mtuandrew
 
Posts: 4009
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:59 am
Location: the Manassas Gap Independent Line

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby Greg Moore » Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:30 pm

Now this is interesting.

I doubt anything would come of it, but bring back a Niagara Falls/Detroit train!
Check out QuiCR, Quick, Crowdsourced Responses for businesses.
Greg Moore
 
Posts: 4908
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 12:15 am

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby gokeefe » Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:28 pm

Gilbert B Norman wrote:Finally, to close rail related, mass transportation is an Amazon criteria, but intercity rail is not. Just recognition of "Facts of Life", or a significant omission?


Door #3: Author considers term to be all inclusive.
gokeefe
User avatar
gokeefe
 
Posts: 9688
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:28 pm
Location: Winthrop, Maine

Re: Michigan Central Station

Postby dowlingm » Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:22 am

gokeefe wrote:
Gilbert B Norman wrote:The fact remains that Detroit will never have a 3M population again and must accept that it's current 710K is what it will have. Painful as it may be, Detroit will have to "decorporate" square mileage to that, say, of Cleveland or Pittsburgh. That means no more city services - no cops, no firefighters, no water, no sewage, no traffic lights, no streetlights. In short a TS Eliott "Wasteland".


This suggestion goes against the prevailing trend of reurbanization. I doubt very much that it will come to fruition. Detroit's greatest asset is in fact its large area that can be rezoned, redeveloped and renewed. There are few places in the United States where a large mega-city could be built from scratch. Detroit is one of them and I think that with the right mix of conditions that it could happen.
To be fair, this has been proposed before http://robocop.wikia.com/wiki/Delta_City but we haven't gotten a deployment ready ED-209 yet.
dowlingm
 
Posts: 965
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:42 pm
Location: Toronto, ON

Previous

Return to Amtrak

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests