• Albuquerque New Mexico Rail Runner Railrunner

  • General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.
General discussion of passenger rail proposals and systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: mtuandrew, gprimr1

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  by Jeff Smith
Refresher on the official web-site: http://nmrailrunner.com/


As previously reported. Brief, fair-use quote required by railroad.net:
Starting April 7, two more trains will be added to both the northbound and southbound Saturday schedule, allowing people more choices as to when they would like to arrive and depart from each station. The first train of the day will arrive in Santa Fe an hour earlier, at 10:16 a.m., allowing people more time to enjoy the farmers market and other morning events at the Santa Fe Railyard. There will now be a train leaving Santa Fe at 9 p.m. on Saturdays, allowing people to travel to Santa Fe, have dinner and then return to downtown Albuquerque.

Read more: http://www.koat.com/news/30711274/detai ... z1qEhqSfMZ
  by Jeff Smith
Unused station? http://www.santafenewmexican.com/Local% ... n-still-id
It appears that another summer will go by without commuter-train service at the never-used Rail Runner Express station built years ago near the intersection of Zia Road and St. Francis Drive.

Although city officials last August approved a plan for putting the idle station to use and for using city money to reimburse a developer for sidewalks, the state Department of Transportation says it won't ask train planners to begin service there any time soon.


At the urging of local officials, the state spent more than $1 million to build the train platform in 2008 on the public right-of-way with the intention that owners of adjacent land would build access to it as part of a development project. Legal hurdles, neighborhood disputes and economic challenges kept that development from moving ahead right away.


"I can tell you that many entities within the department were against Zia [Road station] because they knew," he said. "Our traffic engineers are pretty smart people. They knew that the Zia Road station was not really going to be able to work. There was opposition to it internally, but for political reasons they went ahead with it anyway."


Santa Fe stations that are in use include the South Capitol Station near the Department of Transportation headquarters between Cordova Road and Alta Vista Street, the downtown Railyard Depot and a park-and-ride stop near the interchange of N.M. 599 and Interstate 25.
  by neroden
I've been following this one. The situation with the Zia Road station is really an embarassment. There seem to be two interest groups in the area.
(1) People who want to walk or bike to the station to catch trains to Albuquerque or Downtown Santa Fe.
(2) People who are afraid of people from other neighborhoods using it as an unauthorized park-and-ride, parking on local streets.
There seem to be some people in BOTH groups.

The interests of the two groups have not been satisfactorily reconciled.

It doesn't help that Zia Road is a bit of a throroughfare, so the state & city roads departments keep wanting to widen it, but *all* the locals oppose that, because they don't want it to be a thoroughfare.

In order to appease the first group, a platform was built at Zia Road. In order to appease the second group, it wasn't opened -- it was going to be opened when the City had a "master plan" for the area. The city has never managed to actually settle on a master plan for the area (they have tentatively approved several, then backed out) due to the difficulty of preventing people from using the station as an unauthorized park-and-ride. Hopefully someone will eventually have the political will to break the impasse; perhaps a "locals only" parking permit scheme would satisfy people.
  by Backshophoss
There have been glitches on the Zia Road station,and the City of Santa Fe can be a real pain to deal with at times.
The orignal plan was tossed due to a mixup with the former location of the ROW(ex-ATSF/SFSR)that was along
Galisteo street side of the lot.The current NMRX/SFSR alinement along with the "Rail Trail" is closer to
St Francis Drive.
The City of Santa Fe rejected a proposed strip shopping center due to traffic loads on Zia Road/St Francis Drive,
and neighbors concerns.There are plenty of residental properties in the area,the lot was zoned commerical and was the
location of "C R Minerials" warehouse(comodity was "mica-white" used in cardboard production).
There was a plan approved in july of 2011 by the city for a temporary parking lot to be built
and a tie-in to "Santa Fe Trails" bus system. It has not been built yet.
So Zia road sits fenced off and unused.

Today,NMRX announced that the approved fare hike and new schedules start May 21 2012 whih includes
1 northbound and 1 southbound "Express train", revamped weekend service,more "Quiet" cars and the "smartphone"
ticket app that seems to be popular now.

On National Train Day,May 12 NMRX,Amtrak,ABQ Ride(city bus),Greyhound,along with the Wheels Museum and BNSF
will be having events at the Avarado Transpotation Center(Dwtn ABQ) from 1pm-5pm and at Wheels Museum from 10am-5pm
with shuttle service between both sites
I have bad luck with linking,but here are the sites,www.nmrailrunner.com and http://www.wheelsmuseum.org
  by Jeff Smith
Express service leaving track 1!

http://www.progressiverailroading.com/p ... p?id=31010
Starting May 21, New Mexico Rail Runner Express will operate a new express train service between Albuquerque and Sante Fe, N.M., and add new amenities.

Riders using the new express service will be able to cut commute times by 20 to 25 minutes in each direction between the two cities, Rail Runner Express officials said in a prepared statement.

The express train will skip three stations and operate with a second locomotive on the train to save time during the steep climb on the way to Santa Fe. The express service will operate in the morning and evening.
  by Zmapper
If you need a more concrete example of what FRA weight penalties do to trip times, here it is. How on earth can a train save 8 minutes PER STOP just by skipping them? In the rest of the world where railroads are somewhat competent, stop penalties are closer to 90 seconds for electrified trains and 120-200 seconds for diesel trains.
  by Backshophoss
The Express(102) will have 2 units shoving 4 cars up La Bajada hill which is a 3.25% grade! They will have a "running start" from
US 550 stop in Bernalillo to CP Madrid,where the 3.25% starts till behind the northbound "rest area" on I-25,it's 3.5 miles long!
In general 1unit shoving 4 cars uphill will drop from 79 mph down to 35 mph by the time you go under I-25 NB lanes to row in the Median strip.

You are going uphill from ABQ to Santa Fe.
  by Zmapper
Okay, that makes things a bit more palatable. Just wondering, how crowded are the trains today? Are 50%, 75%, 90% or more of the seats filled during rush hour?
  by Backshophoss
Loadings are around 65-85%,with spikes due to gas price hikes M-F, Saturdays are around 85-90% on midday runs,not sure about sunday.
Wine Fest weekend,trains are just stuffed.
  by Amtrak7
"The change in fare structure marks the first time Rail Runner Express has increased its fares, officials said."

Really? There have been numerous increases in the past as far as I can remember...
  by Backshophoss
Fare increases "happened" as more "zones" came on line after the "Freebe" intro.
The last one was when US 550-Santa Fe went online and the final 3 fare zones were added.
This is the 1st system-wide fare increase.
  by Backshophoss
It's "monsoon" season in NM,since the ground is very DRY,water runs to the lowest level instead of being soaked into the ground,
there was a Thunderstorm yesterday eve around 17:00 at the Kewa(Santo Domingo)Pueblo,there was a flash flood that damaged the bridge at
MP864(Rio Galisteo).
1 train( #101 Express)was stopped by the High water detector near CP East Domingo and waited for the Track and Bridge inspections to be done.
Around 18:30 the train was "walked" over the bridge, then allowed to continue to ABQ,the rest of the eveing service was "Busatition" between
US550 and NM599 stations with 2 sets of equipment stuck in the Santa Fe area.
Today service was run Belen-US 550 with "Busatition" to Santa Fe,while work continued to repair the Bridge at MP864.
Train service to Santa Fe to be restored by tomorrow(sat) in time for "Indian Market" weekend.
AMTK #4 was turned on the Abajo wye today to run as #3 back to LAUPT.
  by Backshophoss
Herzog will be retained,Amtrak is a long shot at best. Herzog has kept the service at 97% or better on time performance.
Herzog has been a good steward of the monies used on the service,had a surplus at the end of the Fiscal year, and maintans
the ROW in good condition. Has plans to do the required PTC work and needed upgrades
Unlikely Amtrak would want to deal with Santa Fe Southern shortline/tourist operation on shared ops between CP Hondo and
the Santa Fe Depot.
  by Firstout
Herzog being non-union probably helps keep the costs low too.
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