• Lackawanna Cutoff Passenger Service Restoration

  • Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.
Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.

Moderators: lensovet, nick11a, Kaback9

  by Arti
At the same time, they now have a park and ride at the intersection of 515 and 23 in Hardyston. Every morning I see that place packed with NY commuters.
What would they ride? The furthest any bus goes is Newfoundland?
Bypassing Sparta and going to Vernon is a great idea.
Ironically isn't Sparta the only town in Sussex with mass transit to NYC.

  by NJTRailfan
NYSW ROW can be upgraded with signals and a few passing sidings but for some reason NYS is too stuborn to allow NJT to run on it. But once NJT does I'd love to see them give the hicks in Sparta the finger and run the trains to Vernon.

I'll be suprised if sparta has transportation. considerign 15 is a total parking lot I'm surprised bus companies will run up there. Sparta refuses to do anythign abotu their part of Route 15 even though alot of peopel have been serirously injured o died on their stretch. Yes dover, Rockaway/Wharton had accidents but they'd doen everythign from lowerign the speed limit, added lights and reflectors, installed better/more warning signs.

Along with making intersections more safer. Sparta hasn't done that til someone died and that more accients happen. With all the stuff that goes on along with the bottle necking it's no wonder traffic backs up past the Spartan Gas Station in Dover. If that backwards town continues to drag their feet then the traffic will back up to Freeway Tires in Dover in another 5 yrs.

  by uzplayer
The closest park and ride to Vernon is on the intersection of 515 and 23 which just happens to be right next to the NY&SW rail line. They just put it in a little while ago. My wife saw NJT busses parked while people got on them.

Sparta obviously doesn't want to reap the benefits that rail service can bring. So NJT should just go ahead and bypass them. Run the trains to Vernon. I'm confident that people will ride em here. The only thing that'd stop it from happening now is NY&SW of which I remember someone saying that they've been blocking service. I dunno what they're trying to do, but eventually more and more people will rise up and start stating their need for the service. It would be futile for NJT and NY&SW not to listen.

  by JayMan
Let's say the Lackawanna cutoff is joined to NJ trackage and we passenger service from NYC to the Poconos. That's a length of at least 120 miles -- making it a two and a half hour commute at least. If they do restore this trackage, wouldn't it need to be (to see real ridership) doubled-tracked and graded and signaled to allow 100 mph runs (costing quite a bit of $$$)?

  by NIMBYkiller
Lakeland bus runs out of Sparta to PABT in NYC.

I agree with you guys so far. Ignore Sparta and the NIMBYs and just go to Vernon. Put in a shuttle bus to the water park/ski resort and bingo.

  by JoeG
JayMan-- The Cutoff isn't the problem. It's more or less straight and level, and originally had no grade crossings. Now it has one but that could be removed. It wouldn't take much to allow 100 mph running on it. However, the Cutoff is only 26 miles. The railroad in the Poconos has lots of curves and grades. NJT runs the railroad E of the Cutoff quite slowly. Right now, an express takes 1 hour 18 minutes to get from Dover to NYP. The running times of expresses are now slower than the running times of locals in Lackawanna days. If the Cutoff were to be restored, it would be necessary to improve NJT's running times on the M&E east of the cutoff to provide reasonable commuting times for passengers on, or west of, the cutoff.

  by NJTRailfan
Unless if NS wants to use the line you will not see the cutoff double tracked.

The expresses are quite slow right now and unless if NJT wants to add slumber coaches along with the bar,cafe and lounge cars on the cutoff trians I suggest NJT had better work on the scheduling and have anemities. NJT should be able to do soemthing since Martz has over head tvs and plus seating that reclines. an hour and 18 from NYP-Dover on a packed comet 5 is enough for me as is. But no way in hell would I do that from Hoboken-E Stouds let alone a Hoboken-Scranton run. I drew the line last year when I rode from Hoboken-Hackettstown a few times last year.

  by uzplayer
I hope they do bring rail to Vernon. Would make everyone's life easier.

As for the Cutoff, the trip would probably be comparable to the trip taken by commuters on the Port Jervis Line into Hoboken. They should put amenities in those trains for the commuters, and honestly, it's not a big deal to put ammenities. With Direct TV technology available on planes now, it shouldn't be a big deal to adapt that technology to a train. Add to that a dining car, and you got your consist of trains.

Funding obviously on NJT's side is at issue though. From what it looks like from previous and numerous posts here, PA is ready to move forward. Will it benefit PA more then NJ? I disagree. I think the economics of bringing passengers into the immediate metro area and NYC will bring more people to spend, and distribute more money. In the long run, while on the surface it might seem that there'd be a loss on NJT's side, the economic benefits as a whole outweigh the costs.

  by BlockLine_4111
any service on the cut-off will have to be fast-n-furious before the train gets bogged down upon entering and navigating the congested and also constricted M&E artery.

  by Lackawanna484
NJ Transit actually runs quite a few Port Authority Bus Terminal routes out into NYSW territory (Vernon, etc)

The 197 bus goes to Vernon / Warwick NY and is rarely more than a mile from the NYSW / L&HR along route 94. The 196 goes to Newfoundland Park/Ride as well.

The 195 bus goes out to Ringwood and West Milford, and the 194 has stops in Pompton Lakes, Wayne, Bloomingdale. Frequent, fast, and cheap.

For the dollars that are being tossed around for reactivating the Cut-Off and adding NYSW commuter service, you could probably give everybody FREE bus service and still save money. Many drivers would prob take the bus for free rather than buying $2 gas, but I could be wrong...

  by Irish Chieftain
Ain't any bus that can get around the traffic, unless you want to spend extra for bus lanes all the way up Route 23, and/or on Route 15 and I-80. And you can imagine that those bus lanes will themselves get jammed the closer you get to the Stinkin' Lincoln.

Paying for free bus service will not be the same as buying a good train service—at all. The trains will still get people in and out of the metro area faster than any bus, and getting people to work on time and in less time than driving reduces lost work time costs immensely and results in healthier employees.

When I was still working in Linden NJ driving from the Mount Pocono area, I always saw the Martz Bus crawling down I-80, no faster than any of the other cars. And when there is light to moderate traffic, the Martz Bus speeds, which is quite illegal—that in and of itself ought to be construed as "unfair competition" to the railroads who cannot exceed their own speed limits without serious signaling and infrastructure investment.

(Incidentally, the 195 bus runs between Willowbrook Mall and PABT, serving Little Falls and Cedar Grove via a very circuitous route. Route 194 diverts via the 195 Cedar Grove route on the weekends. The 196 and 197 are the buses for Ringwood.)

  by Lackawanna484
Irish Chieftain wrote:The 196 and 197 are the buses for Ringwood.)

I'll tell NJT Bus operations. They've gotta change all those 197 Warwick bus destination signs in that case... :-D

  by Irish Chieftain
Nope, they go to Warwick via Ringwood. They're AOK...

  by AlM
Arti wrote:What would they ride? The furthest any bus goes is Newfoundland?
"Park and Ride" often doesn't refer to riding a bus at all. Often it just means park here and car pool. For example, the Taconic Parkway, as much as 80 mi north of NYC, has "Park and Ride" lots that were former service stations, miles from any bus line. They are small but get pretty full.
  by njtmnrrbuff
The bus service along the Route 23 corridor is quite good. I haven't really looked at the schedules carefully. Other transit modes closer to that corridor really depend on where you want to go. For someone that lives along 23 like around Franklin, If they want rail service, then Dover would be closer. Also, depending on how far you live from NY state and where, the PJL is another bet. For instance, I've heard about people living around Ringwood that use Suffern or Sloatsburg. But wait, parking at both those stations is not so good. Ramsey Route 17 is really a "Metropark." Also there is more service.
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