• Commuter Rail Electrification

  • Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.
Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

  by mbrproductions
 
Wouldn't it make more sense to extend the Blue line to Lynn?
Absolutely, but what is probably going to happen instead is an infill station being built on the Eastern Route near Wonderland, according to this article, funding has already been secured to the city of Revere for this project,
https://www.wcvb.com/article/connect-mb ... l/39541001

If this is built, I believe it would kill the Blue Line extension to Lynn project for good.
  by Trinnau
 
$4M in funding is possibly enough to do a design for a new station, but may be a little short especially if they're going to roll some kind of an actual connection to Wonderland in. As the article says it's a "down payment". By comparison the most recent station overhaul at Worcester is a $45M construction project.

Ultimately somebody has to decide the best route to take. The people who live further out don't like infill stations because it makes their trips longer. Trains move pretty fast through that area today.
  by TurningOfTheWheel
 
If I personally were the one making these decisions, I would say "why not both?" But with every passing day, the probability of the Blue Line extension ever happening further approaches zero.
  by mbrproductions
 
but may be a little short especially if they're going to roll some kind of an actual connection to Wonderland in.
I would guess that they would just run a short shuttle from Wonderland to the potential future station in East Revere, it doesn't seem too pricy, and if they were to build an actual walkable connection between the two, they would need a massive overpass going over North Shore Road and the now empty footprint between that road and the Eastern Route Main itself, which would be just over 1,300 feet long according to google maps' distance measuring tool, sounds pricy if you ask me.
The people who live further out don't like infill stations because it makes their trips longer.
This is why the MBTA should start running peak express trains on most lines just as they do now on the Framingham/Worcester.
Trains move pretty fast through that area today.
That's why both passengers and engineers (the ones I have spoken to at least) love that segment, it is personally one of my favorite segments on the entire system and a big part of why the Newburyport/Rockport is one of my favorite lines.
If I personally were the one making these decisions, I would say "why not both?"
Because $$$
But with every passing day, the probability of the Blue Line extension ever happening further approaches zero.
They said the same thing about GLX, didn't they? :-)
  by scratchyX1
 
I feel like blue line extension, to meet the regional rail at lynne, would have more riders.
Last edited by nomis on Tue Apr 05, 2022 9:41 am, edited 1 time in total. Reason: rmeoved immediate quote
  by mbrproductions
 
And I agree with your assertion, but which is more likely to happen? On one hand we have an extension of the Blue Line to Lynn that would not only be fantastic for connecting the Blue Line with Commuter Rail, but would also give the people of Lynn a cheaper option to commute into Boston along with more flexibility, BUT is much more expensive and would take longer to complete. While on the other hand we have a cheap infill station that would slow down Commuter Rail service and provide a bare bones transfer between the Blue Line and the Commuter Rail, and would only take as long to complete as the new Chelsea Station did.
The answer is obviously the latter, the Blue Line extension is the better project but this proposal is like a shortcut that politicians have found to connect the Blue Line to the Commuter Rail without having to build the extension, and they aren't going to take the long, expensive way to connecting the two, no matter how much better the results are.
Last edited by CRail on Wed Apr 06, 2022 1:08 am, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Unnecessary quote removed. Do not use the "Quote" button as a "Reply" button.
  by CRail
 
The way I see it, Blue Line to Lynn is inevitable. You can pay millions for a stop gap, and then pay even more for redundancy, or you can do the right thing in the first place paying more up front but saving the Commonwealth in the long run. Electrifying ANYTHING on the Northside Commuter Rail is a waste. NSRL already didn't happen and isn't going to during the lives of anyone alive today. Forget the pipe dreams and focus on the electrification projects that DO make sense. NEC (Commuter), Dorchester Branch, Soughton, and sneak Needham in while you're at it (that way the power infrastructure is there for eventual orange line conversion). Major, strategic, progress is then made and the T can pat themselves on the back for getting something done and not having trip over themselves down the road.
  by FatNoah
 
While on the other hand we have a cheap infill station that would slow down Commuter Rail service and provide a bare bones transfer between the Blue Line and the Commuter Rail
Or, the other option is that the T builds this, and then cites low usage as a reason to NOT build the Blue Line extension to Lynn.
  by rethcir
 
Could we split the difference with a BLX to Point of Pines, plus Electric newburyport/rockport?

I feel that prioritizing electric CR with stops at River Works, Lynn and onward to at least Salem is more practical way to move people from Lynn to downtown, while also improving quality of life for the whole North Shore. It's kinda a two-fer. Also provides the opportunity for infill regional rail stops at Revere, East Chelsea and the Encore which would certainly be well-utilized.

Hopefully Maura Healey will have some understanding of the needs here.
  by TurningOfTheWheel
 
I think the Rockport/Newburyport alignment from BON to Lynn or Salem could be very valuable for a high-frequency regional rail or RER-style service, with longer-distance commuter rail trains also running through the corridor. Everett and Chelsea could certainly benefit from frequent, electrified service. I just find it particularly unlikely that that would happen before electrifying the Providence/Stoughton line or even the Fairmount line.
  by Trinnau
 
Express trains blow a hole in high-frequency service schedules because they generally eat up 2 train slots. The MBTA runs them now. There simply isn't enough capacity on 2 tracks to run both.
  by mbrproductions
 
Based on pages 31, 33, 54 and 77 of the FY23-27 CIP, the MBTA seems to be willing to invest in the electrification project (deemed "Rail Vision" or "Rail Transformation") over the next few years. Despite this, transit advocates still seem disgruntled by the MBTA and seem to think that the MBTA does not want to take the project seriously, at least according to this article, https://commonwealthmagazine.org/transp ... -the-room/
Transit advocates have grown frustrated in the ensuing years at what they decry as a lack of follow-through on that vote, which came from a panel that has since dissolved and been replaced.
So what gives?
- Thanks
  by BandA
 
On the one hand, they are removing the valuable, proven Trackless Trolley wires, on the other they want to install wires over Commuter Rail. Basically they just want to blow money.
  by mbrproductions
 
Ha! That's what I'm saying! the MBTA is being wasteful at the worst possible time, what with their fiscal situation and all.
  by octr202
 
Worth noting, if the T were left to it's own devices, they'd both scrap the trackless trolley system AND avoid electrifying commuter rail. They're only doing the latter (grudgingly) because it's big enough the politicians are starting to notice and force them to do it.

The trackless system died because it's too small and too easy for the T to obfuscate and confuse the few state reps/senators in the area covered so they didn't put up a fight.
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