• Beacon Park Tracker

  • Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New England
Pertaining to all railroading subjects, past and present, in New England

Moderators: MEC407, NHN503

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  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
They wouldn't be talking the main yard. CSX is on the hook for dismantling all that track and leveling the yard structures. It's the engine house yard, which is the state's responsibility to remediate. Harvard is not going to be able to build on the engine yard property because it's totally pinned in by Pike ramps. It would take a lower-profile reconfiguration of the Allston ramps to permit any sort of worthwhile access to that area, so it'll be the very last parcel developed by Harvard. Existing engine house and fueling facility, direct access to the Grand Junction and BET, loop, 7 existing tail tracks, huge amount of storage space, direct official-vehicle access from Storrow EB and Pike WB with extra parking space available under the Pike viaduct for MOW vehicles, no abutters to complain, and much better yard security with the roads pinning it in and easy visibility than the main yard. That's pretty much a no-build option they can take advantage of tomorrow, then hold on to for 20 years until they figure out something better and more centrally-located at the other sites. I agree that they need to fill out all the empty space around existing Readville layover and that Widett/Southampton ought to be maxed out for transit use since the cold storage place doesn't draw a lot of business (and could easily be land-swapped to somewhere better off Haul Rd./Track 61 or Marine Industrial Park). Centralization is going to be the most ops-efficient way to do it long-term. But it'll take a few more years to pile up the money for that. BP engine yard they can pretty much grab-and-go, use for a decade or two until the facility more or less reaches end of useful life, then vacate whenever Harvard has it sorted out. Or not vacate at all, since that parcel pretty much has to remain a redevelopment dead zone unless the Pike ramps are significantly streamlined.
  by Sir Ray
 
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:They wouldn't be talking the main yard. CSX is on the hook for dismantling all that track and leveling the yard structures. It's the engine house yard, which is the state's responsibility to remediate. Harvard is not going to be able to build on the engine yard property because it's totally pinned in by Pike ramps. It would take a lower-profile reconfiguration of the Allston ramps to permit any sort of worthwhile access to that area, so it'll be the very last parcel developed by Harvard. Existing engine house and fueling facility, direct access to the Grand Junction and BET, loop, 7 existing tail tracks, huge amount of storage space, direct official-vehicle access from Storrow EB and Pike WB with extra parking space available under the Pike viaduct for MOW vehicles, no abutters to complain, and much better yard security with the roads pinning it in and easy visibility than the main yard. they figure out something better and more centrally-located at the other sites.
Interestingly enough, the aerial diagrams in that MassDOT for the Beacon Park Alternative (Alternative 2) clearly shows the proposed yard directly off the main line (this is on page 108) , on the south side of the lot, as opposed to the north side of the lot (directly abutting the Toll Paza), or the parcel within the loop bounded by the Turnpike, Solider's Field Road, and Cambridge street.
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Sir Ray wrote:
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:They wouldn't be talking the main yard. CSX is on the hook for dismantling all that track and leveling the yard structures. It's the engine house yard, which is the state's responsibility to remediate. Harvard is not going to be able to build on the engine yard property because it's totally pinned in by Pike ramps. It would take a lower-profile reconfiguration of the Allston ramps to permit any sort of worthwhile access to that area, so it'll be the very last parcel developed by Harvard. Existing engine house and fueling facility, direct access to the Grand Junction and BET, loop, 7 existing tail tracks, huge amount of storage space, direct official-vehicle access from Storrow EB and Pike WB with extra parking space available under the Pike viaduct for MOW vehicles, no abutters to complain, and much better yard security with the roads pinning it in and easy visibility than the main yard. they figure out something better and more centrally-located at the other sites.
Interestingly enough, the aerial diagrams in that MassDOT for the Beacon Park Alternative (Alternative 2) clearly shows the proposed yard directly off the main line (this is on page 108) , on the south side of the lot, as opposed to the north side of the lot (directly abutting the Toll Paza), or the parcel within the loop bounded by the Turnpike, Solider's Field Road, and Cambridge street.
I see that. That makes zero sense given the CSX-vs.-state division of labor in the freight yard dismantling, so I wonder how many years that part of the study has been sitting in the can before release. All that rail in the main yard is headed out west for CSX to recycle or cash in for scrap, and the freight buildings and light towers are all getting leveled. But that engine house, fuel tanks, and loop yard are just going to sit there and leak god knows what into the soil until the state comes up with money to demolish and remediate. Doesn't exactly take crack analytical skills to see there's some unexplained discrepancies there. For one, storing the number of consists they want to store there requires them to double the size of their easement easement on the property. And the study basically throws up its hands on p. 53 and says everything is speculative until they talk to the property owner. A half-arsed "we got nuthin', so here's a bunch of what-if's we never followed up on" since nobody bothered to phone up Harvard and ask what they'd be willing to allow.

At the end of the day I think they've got a better shot at the engine yard. Lower cost, less new/replacement infrastructure to build, fewer property considerations since Harvard is least able to do anything with that parcel in the next 2 decades, and probably more storage than they'd get on their existing Worcester Line property easement.
  by Pat Fahey
 
Hi all
It is a shame to see Beacon Park go, but we all knew sooner or later it was going to happen . Attached a photo from better days.Pat.
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  by BandA
 
The Massachusetts constitution prohibits the state from taking of any Harvard property! On the other hand, if Harvard wants a commuter rail stop, they'd better sell part of the yard back. My wild idea is a loop track around Beacon Park, extending over the river to meet the Grand Junction on the Cambridge riverbank, allowing access from the east without a backing movement. In theory, this would allow a train from Providence to Portland, with Boston area stops at Back Bay, Kendall, and wherever it crosses the GLX and the Orange line. This would be faster or more reliable at rush hour than 93 through the city or 128/95 wide circle route. Nobody would care about another bridge crossing the river in this area because there is no parkland in that stretch.
  by Mcoov
 
BandA wrote:In theory, this would allow a train from Providence to Portland, with Boston area stops at Back Bay, Kendall, and wherever it crosses the GLX and the Orange line.
How would they make the left turn at Back Bay to get from the NEC to the B&A? They'd have to back up.

I personally believe the MBTA should go for Readville, and then use Widett Circle/Foodmart/Cold Storage area for freight.
  by BandA
 
Mcoov wrote: How would they make the left turn at Back Bay to get from the NEC to the B&A? They'd have to back up.
They would have to take the Dorchester Branch & curve left on the bridge that crosses Ft Pt. Channel. I bet the Orange Line could be made to branch west underground, but you'd have to rebuild back bay station, so not gonna happen in the near future
... MBTA should go for Readville, and then use Widett Circle/Foodmart/Cold Storage area for freight.
. How about the old Boston Herald property ? It used to be rail served& the development could be built above
  by joshg1
 
Pat Fahey wrote:Hi all
It is a shame to see Beacon Park go, but we all knew sooner or later it was going to happen . Attached a photo from better days.Pat.
The gas holders are *probably* for coal gas. I'm not sure where the gas works was, but the tanks filled overnight to keep pressure during the day. Also- Braves Field! and the field that gives Soldiers Field Road its name.
  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
 
BandA wrote:
Mcoov wrote: How would they make the left turn at Back Bay to get from the NEC to the B&A? They'd have to back up.


They would have to take the Dorchester Branch & curve left on the bridge that crosses Ft Pt. Channel. I bet the Orange Line could be made to branch west underground, but you'd have to rebuild back bay station, so not gonna happen in the near future
... MBTA should go for Readville, and then use Widett Circle/Foodmart/Cold Storage area for freight.
.

How about the old Boston Herald property ? It used to be rail served& the development could be built above
the WYE in question connects BROAD and COVE. I have never seen anything in books anywhere that prohibits loaded passenger trains from traveling over, it is 10mph so that could be a possiblity, I have just never seen or heard it being done. There is always MOW equipment stored on it. A train would have to make a reverse move to serve either South Station or North Station, so no matter what, a reverse move would have to be made to service one of the major hub stations in the trip to Portland....will never be done
  by Rbts Stn
 
So I rode past Beacon Park on Saturday night around 5:30PM and saw that car still there.

By 12:30PM on Sunday, it appeared to be gone. Looked again on my way westbound around 2:30 and I could not find it.

I guess they did a move?
  by frrc
 
Rbts Stn wrote:So I rode past Beacon Park on Saturday night around 5:30PM and saw that car still there.

By 12:30PM on Sunday, it appeared to be gone. Looked again on my way westbound around 2:30 and I could not find it.

I guess they did a move?
Or scrapped it...
  by Komarovsky
 
Went by thisbevening and it's still there.
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Any update on the engine yard closing? Drove by yesterday and it was still full of power.
  by CRail
 
From what I've heard, it isn't going to, at least not in the near future. CSX doesn't have another facility on the B&A east of Selkirk as I understand it (certainly not east of Springfield), so it makes sense for trains terminating in Worcester or Framingham to send their power to Boston to be fueled and serviced. The light engine moves leave Boston pretty much daily seeming to follow the same schedule as the intermodal train they used to pull.
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