• Amtrak: Connects US // American Jobs Plan Infrastructure Legislation

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

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by rcthompson04
 
njtmnrrbuff and scratchyX1... the PennDOT study last year and the Phoenixville are basically commuter trains to Center City Philadelphia where as Amtrak is trying to replicate the Keystone Service, but going to Reading instead of Harrisburg. Amtrak has no desire to run through the Center City Tunnels and have 3 additional station stops with 30th Street Upper, Suburban, and Jefferson.

I think the Amtrak proposal is a good idea, but I think it needs to be done in conjunction with the PennDOT study from last year, which was basically an extension of some Norristown Line trains using dual modes.
  by rcthompson04
 
scratchyX1 wrote: Thu Aug 26, 2021 2:14 pm I recall the study calling for dual modes. Like amtrak now has on order.
I think the Norristown line does run to 30th street.
The PennDOT/Phoenixville proposals run through the Center City Tunnel. Amtrak seems really adverse to such an idea.
  by ExCon90
 
Maybe because all their other services use the Lower Level; going through the tunnel would mean some New York departures, including Keystone, would leave from the LL, while the trains from Reading would use the UL. Further complicating things would be the duplicate track numbering: LL 1-10, UL 1-6. I think they should have made the UL 11-16 when they did the rehab -- which could still be done.

As to njtmnrrbuff's post above, running via Norristown is a must, providing connections to the Regional Rail locals, NHSL (ex P&W), and local buses. Bridgeport, across the river, isn't even convenient to Norristown.
  by rcthompson04
 
ExCon90 wrote: Thu Aug 26, 2021 8:49 pm As to njtmnrrbuff's post above, running via Norristown is a must, providing connections to the Regional Rail locals, NHSL (ex P&W), and local buses. Bridgeport, across the river, isn't even convenient to Norristown.
I think that is the best case for restoring service via the Cynwyd Viaduct. It looks like you could actually run one track and retain the trail. From an infrastructure perspective it is likely more expensive than restoring the connection at Zoo, but gives more flexibility and service to Norristown.
  by jonnhrr
 
I agree going via Cynwyd makes more sense than the roundabout route via the tunnel then the former RDG line to 16th St. Jct. and the line to Norristown. It would mean fixing the bridge across the Schuylkill not sure what is involved there.
  by mcgrath618
 
jonnhrr wrote: Fri Aug 27, 2021 10:25 am I agree going via Cynwyd makes more sense than the roundabout route via the tunnel then the former RDG line to 16th St. Jct. and the line to Norristown. It would mean fixing the bridge across the Schuylkill not sure what is involved there.
The route they’re proposing isn’t via the CCCC, it’s via the CSX High Line and the NS HBG main. It’s pretty direct. Never comes under wire though.

The Manayunk Bridge was structurally analyzed in the mid 90s and was determined to be in good health. It is now functioning as a trail. This has caused quite a stir in Lower Merion, and it is likely that removing the trail would generate almost as much support as it would backlash.
  by STrRedWolf
 
There's also one other complication: The upper level of 30th Street is all now behind fare gates for SEPTA Regional Rail. So Amtrak can't go there.

What options do we have?

If we stay with a Keystone style service at 30th street, we have two options: rebuild the track between Cynwyd and Manayunk, or connect to CSX's Hamburg Subdivision at ZOO, handover to NS Harrisburg Line, and bridge over the Schuylkill River to get to SEPTA track.

If we can get away from 30th street, we can actually take an old PRR line just east of Norristown called the Trenton Branch (NS Dale Secondary). Get on that, and ride it all the way out to Trenton and NYC.

Ether way, from Norristown you can get back on the NS Harrisburg Line that goes to Redding. That's your straight shot.
  by ExCon90
 
Oops -- forgot all about the Upper Level fare gates: a dumb idea in the first place, involving a maintenance-intensive attempt by SEPTA to capture "the last dime every time" at all costs.

Getting from Manayunk to Norristown will require some on-the-ground inspection. There's a significant difference in elevation beetween the PRR and RDG row's from Manayunk at least to Ivy Ridge, and the old PRR alignment is now an integral part of a continuous hiking and biking trail extending from south of Center City Philadelphia to Valley Forge National Park and almost certainly untouchable. Use of the RDG line will involve conflicts with SEPTA locals, but at least not all the way into Philadelphia.
  by ExCon90
 
west point wrote: Fri Aug 27, 2021 3:08 am My first time at 30th streets station was also confused with the duplicate track numbering. I believe they were using a chalk board as the soled board not operating ?
Yes, it was a green board on which a uniformed usher wrote the information for each train with white chalk on a separate line, erasing it with a cloth after the train departed. It was in continuous use until it was replaced (1960's? 1970's?) by the Solari board which was replaced in its turn a short while ago.
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