• Green Line Extension Lechmere to Medford

  • 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: sery2831, CRail

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  by bostontrainguy
 
Yeah but they are probably thinking of eventually doing this since they are now going to build a southside maintenance base in Readville.
Last edited by CRail on Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:50 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Unnecessary nesting quotes removed. Do not use the "Quote" button as a "Reply" button.
  by newpylong
 
I still don't think they would do it. There is also balancing equipment, not just maintenance. The link is too vital as a heavy rail line.
  by Arborwayfan
 
Daytime light rail, wee-hours commuter rail transfers?
  by TurningOfTheWheel
 
Grand Junction light rail conversion would have to be preceded by the North-South Rail Link. That would be a rare act of extreme forward planning on the T's part if they actually accounted for that possibility in GLX design, considering there's no way shovels hit the ground on that project this decade. Extending the Union Square branch to Porter is much more likely IMO.
  by Red Wing
 
Also with CSX buying Big G who says that freight won't be brought back to the Grand Junction?
  by stevefol
 
Doesn't the high level platforms being installed east of Framingham make that unlikely?
  by Trinnau
 
MBTA's high level platforms accommodate standard freight cars with a standard 10-'8" width. They are built with the same exact offset that mini-highs are built with. What they don't accommodate is over-dimension cars, which the mini-highs can lift their folding edge for. So the construction of high-level platforms has no real bearing on regular freight traffic. Pan Am's gravel train and Lawrence/Boston locals regularly pass the high-level platforms at Anderson/Woburn, Malden Center, Lynn, Salem and (newly constructed but not yet open) Chelsea. CSX regularly passes high-level platforms on the Fairmount Line, Middleboro Line and at Route 128.

I know from a very reliable source that CSX floated the idea of running through freight (100+ car trains) via the Grand Junction if they couldn't work out Ayer with the NS - which they appear to have done so it's moot for now. It's also completely possible CSX may shift some of their Boston work back to Framingham instead of Lawrence. Full conversion to light rail still would require CSX to give up their freight rights over the line. Things are too up in the air right now for that to happen any time in the next 5 years at least.
  by MBTA3247
 
Trinnau wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:43 pmFull conversion to light rail still would require CSX to give up their freight rights over the line.
Not necessarily. Several sections of the Trax light rail system in Salt Lake City have nighttime freight service, with multiple active customers along the line.
  by Trinnau
 
That's not full conversion to light rail and works on what's called temporal separation. It requires a major process and a whole bunch of waivers. Full conversion to light rail would take it out of FRA jurisdiction just like the current Green Line is.

Light Rail style equipment used to provide the service would need an agreement from CSX and MBTA to limit their railroad operations to certain windows and specific safeguards to temporally separate light rail and freight/commuter traffic. CSX would still not be anywhere near ready to commit to something like that yet, and would probably ask the state for something significant in return. Even the commuter rail side of the house uses this at uncommon hours to shuffle equipment when needed or convenient. If one side drops a few sets suddenly mid-day the spare from the other side can be sent across to balance things out.
  by CRail
 
That's not quite how that works. It's primarily for sending equipment from the south to BET for work and from Portland to Southampton for the same.

In any event, there's no active proposal for Grand Junction conversion nor is there any plan for the railroad to give it up. Should this change, further such discussion will be welcome.
  by bostontrainguy
 
Red Wing wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 1:32 pm Also with CSX buying Big G who says that freight won't be brought back to the Grand Junction?
I believe they did in their filing.
  by newpylong
 
CSX was going to run a coal train as a test train to see if it was viable via the GJ. With the Plate F restriction at Memorial Drive that was the easiest way to send a train of that length without having to switch out the Plate F's to prove it was viable. The deal was made with NS after that.

It all goes back to my point that the route is too important for heavy rail for the immediate future.
  by Trinnau
 
CRail wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 10:34 pm That's not quite how that works. It's primarily for sending equipment from the south to BET for work and from Portland to Southampton for the same.
Think you misunderstood me, and I am quite familiar with the operation. I was talking about movements above/beyond the standard daily shuffle moves that are made and have been made in the past on short notice that would be unavailable with temporal separation. The commuter rail operation could likely commit to temporal separation for just their overnight shuffle, but they give up the ability to move equipment during the day as a stopgap or if something happens to the Readville switcher overnight in doing so.
  by CRail
 
Trinnau: I was replying specifically to your point about sets being sent back and forth. It’s not impossible and probably has happened, but it’s generally not a thing. Other than that I agree with your points.

Everyone: There are plans to use that line for railroad use, there are no plans to use the line for light rail. Further discussion about the line is welcome on the Grand Junction thread, this one is for GLX.

Further discussion not pertaining to the Green Line Extension to Medford and Somerville in this thread will be deleted.
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