North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

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gokeefe
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by gokeefe » Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:11 am

It will probably be more than just a pop. Raleigh, like Richmond Staples Mills, is in a situation that is becoming less and less common for Amtrak. To wit a station stop where the station facilities appear to be severely constraining major ridership demand. The real question in my mind is not how many are choosing Cary over Raleigh. Its how many are choosing to fly instead of take the train because of the differences between RGH and KRDU. Many rail stations lack long term parking and other amenities typically associated with modern airports. Making those investments will take time.
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Bob Roberts
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Bob Roberts » Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:14 am

^ the Raleigh Union Station project is continuing to struggle with budget / scope issues. [edit: Station Aficionado beat me to this in another thread. Mea culpa]

http://www.newsobserver.com/2015/01/20/ ... .html?rh=1" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

IMO NCDOT rail has not done a good job with project management since getting the ARRA grant (e.g. The reallocated funds from the failed grade seperation project in Charlotte mostly vanished into overages on double tracking). To be fair, I suspect many of the Raleigh station issues are a city responsibility.
Last edited by Bob Roberts on Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

Jersey_Mike
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Jersey_Mike » Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:53 am

Station Aficionado wrote:To switch topics, over the past few years, we've seen a decline in ridership at the overcrowded Raleigh station, but an even bigger increase at nearby Cary. The assumption has been that riders who formerly used Raleigh have switched to the less-crowded Cary (which has more plentiful parking). In FY14, this pattern reversed, with a small decline at Cary (87,548 vs. 88,669 in FY13) that was offset by a slightly larger increase at Raleigh (161,342 vs. 159,584). Given the small absolute numbers involved, this could just be statistical noise, but I had expected the pattern to continue until the new Raleigh Union Station opens. In any event, Raleigh/Cary continues to knock on the door of 250,000 in annual ridership. I'd expect to see a pop in that number when the Raleigh station does open.
As someome from the Northeast that only knows that metro area as "Raleigh-Durham", perhaps both Raleigh and Durham should close their stations and turn Cary into a joint Raleigh-Durham station. I think Minneapolis-St Paul did that with Midway :wink:

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Matt Johnson
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Matt Johnson » Wed Jan 21, 2015 3:59 pm

When I took the Carolinian for a visit to UNC Chapel Hill a couple of years ago I opted to get off at Raleigh rather than the closer Durham station. If I recall correctly, the reason was rental car availability nearby.

dumpster.penguin
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by dumpster.penguin » Wed Jan 21, 2015 8:34 pm

Jersey_Mike wrote:As someome from the Northeast that only knows that metro area as "Raleigh-Durham", perhaps both Raleigh and Durham should close their stations and turn Cary into a joint Raleigh-Durham station. I think Minneapolis-St Paul did that with Midway :wink:
I hope they won't do that! Raleigh is one of those ancient, well-constructed settlements (as is the aforementioned Spartanburg) where you can disembark from the train and walk a few blocks to the downtown hotels. Meanwhile, Charlotte's train station is out in the middle of nowhere! If Cary is redundant with Raleigh, perhaps Cary's station could be moved to downtown Charlotte.

orulz
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by orulz » Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:57 am

Downtown Raleigh and downtown Durham are about 30 miles apart, while Minneapolis and St Paul are more like 10 miles apart. One could potentially argue that Cary is redundant of Raleigh.

What I tend to do is, for north/eastbound trains, I get on at Raleigh. For south/westbound trains, I board at Cary. The Star has a pretty substantial layover in Raleigh. I believe this may be for a crew change but I don't know for certain. When heading to the northeast on the Star, if you get on in Cary, you wind up sitting on the train in Raleigh going nowhere for about 30 or 45 minutes.

Balerion
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Balerion » Mon Nov 30, 2015 10:13 pm

Talk of a bus connection from Asheville to Salisbury:
An official with the N.C. Department of Transportation says the need for a funding source appears to be the key obstacle to providing bus service between Asheville and the Amtrak passenger station in Salisbury.

DOT Rail Division Head Paul Worley tells the Asheville Citizen-Times that if a study suggests the bus would draw at least a reasonable number of riders, the department would initiate talks with communities on the route to get support for the project, possibly including some funding.
http://www.wwaytv3.com/2015/11/30/money ... k-service/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Gilbert B Norman » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:29 am

The linked article from Today's Wall Street Journal is tangential, but "three a day" pass over this structure located just West of the Durham station. Read and watch what happens with all too many that pass under:

http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-joys-of ... 1452045185" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

How do these idiots ever get behind the wheel?

While I admit to having "taken 30" on one, the remaining five mishaps I've had coming to mind, were pure and simple negligence by another party that all "took 100".

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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Arlington » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:49 am

The silly thing is that that bridge is adding millions of dollars in logistics costs between destruction of some trucks and diversion of more.
"Trying to solve congestion by making roadways wider is like trying to solve obesity by buying bigger pants."--Charles Marohn

Gilbert B Norman
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by Gilbert B Norman » Wed Jan 06, 2016 2:30 pm

Mr. Arlington, you do have a point.

With insurance, we all pay for the idiots out there; that's just how insurance works. It's no free lunch; it's simply a pooling of risk from specified perils.

But I would think, as apparently you do, that whatever authority has jurisdiction of that over/underpass, they would accept that underpass is costing society as a whole and address the matter.

ExCon90
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by ExCon90 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:12 pm

Another hidden cost is that in most cases it is necessary to halt all rail traffic until the engineers can get out there to determine whether the rails have been knocked out of alignment. There's a NEC bridge (12'-6") near me which gets hit from time to time; Amtrak eventually tired of shutting the Corridor down every time it happened and mounted giant I-beams on the abutments, alongside the bridge itself but not touching it, painted bright yellow, so that they get hit instead of the bridge. One that didn't fit the pattern: when I lived in Chicago I witnessed the result of a bridge strike where the L crosses above Howard St. diagonally from southeast to northwest; the bridge had engaged the left front corner of the (westbound) trailer and guided it gently but firmly forward and to the right until the whole works tipped over on its right side, the trailer apparently being otherwise undamaged.

west point
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by west point » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:45 pm

Any information about how many persons rode the extra section from CLT ?

orulz
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by orulz » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:48 pm

Because that bridge is close to downtown Durham, numerous other grade separations and crossings, and the Durham Amtrak station, and because a sewer main lies close below the surface, any fix at Gregson alone would be at least in the high eight figures. NCDOT does plan a grade separation project at Mangum and Blackwell, which would raise the crossing at Roxboro street as well, which is also substandard clearance though at slightly over 12 ft not as bad as Gregson. They could probably extend it further west to fix the also substandard chapel hill street, elevate the Amtrak platforms, grade separate Duke street, and fix Gregson, but that is a major scope increase and would probably push the cost well into nine figure territory. Could be considered when the NCRR is double tracked through downtown Durham but as far as I can tell, it's not even on the radar.

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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by David Benton » Wed Jan 06, 2016 5:14 pm

Piedmont cab ride showing track realignment and a new bridge under construction.
http://trn.trains.com/photos-videos/vid ... ride-video" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.

Article in FEB trains.
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orulz
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Re: North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

Post by orulz » Thu Jan 07, 2016 7:33 am

Looks good; I drive that crossing that is being grade separated (Morrisville Parkway) all the time. NCDOT will be temporarily closing the road for a few months pretty soon to do the cutover.

That is one of the curvier stretches on the NCRR. The topography is not that difficult so I am not sure the historical reason the railroad was built that way. Perhaps some powerful 19th century landowner was in the way.

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