• Lowell Line - Winchester, Woburn, Wilmington Spottings

  • 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 newpylong
 
They're doing exactly as he said -removing the automatics (intermediate) ABS signals and reconfiguring the home signals to accomodate a loss of cab signals.
  by Trinnau
 
To add a little, the current signal system on the north side has wayside signals up and down the line. Interlocking signals are retained and Clear Block signals added to them, automatic signals are removed. In other words, anywhere you can crossover the signals stay. Anywhere the signals just indicated track condition ahead (between interlockings) and didn't protect any switches they are removed. The cab signal system provides that information to the engineer in "real-time" in the cab, they don't need the fixed blocks anymore.
  by l008com
 
I've been crossing over the lowell line my whole life. Many years ago, the way the signals worked is that they wouldn't be lit unless there was a train nearby. But starting about 10 years ago or so, the signals lit up and stayed lit. All the time. Now, I assume due to the previously mentioned signal project, the signals are dim again.

I'm all around this line pretty regularly, but I'm on Cross St in Winchester and Montvale Ave in Woburn pretty much every day. It's surprising to see unlit signals again.

So does anyone know what the whole story is in this area? Why did the signals go from sometimes lit to always lit, and now back to sometimes lit.
  by twropr
 
Amtrak put out a passenger notice advising that during the next several weekends (Nov 7-Dec 20) their DOWNEASTER trains would not be stopping at Woburn due to "trackwork being performed by the MBTA." Apparently DOWNEASTER is detouring over the Western Line. Does anyone know what kind of work the T is performing on their New Hampshire Route and/or Wildcat Branch?
Thanks!
Andy
  by Trinnau
 
The MBTA is pretty up-front about what's going on. You can usually find it on their website. Short answer, ATC/PTC work along with the GLX project as we discussed above. It's been happening for the better part of 2 years between both projects. The current Downeaster schedule doesn't even list a schedule time for Anderson/Woburn on the weekend.
l008com wrote:I've been crossing over the lowell line my whole life. Many years ago, the way the signals worked is that they wouldn't be lit unless there was a train nearby. But starting about 10 years ago or so, the signals lit up and stayed lit. All the time. Now, I assume due to the previously mentioned signal project, the signals are dim again.

I'm all around this line pretty regularly, but I'm on Cross St in Winchester and Montvale Ave in Woburn pretty much every day. It's surprising to see unlit signals again.

So does anyone know what the whole story is in this area? Why did the signals go from sometimes lit to always lit, and now back to sometimes lit.
Signals would light on approach of a train for many reasons. Save electricity, less light pollution, and fewer bulb replacements. Now with LED lights, the beams are more focused, they last MUCH longer and consume far less energy. There were always certain critical locations which would be lit full-time for one reason or another.

But this past weekend the signals at Montvale Ave. and Cross St. were retired and replaced by ATC. The signal heads should be turned away from the tracks or removed, but the masts may remain for a little while still. They will not be lit again.
  by stevefol
 
So, does anyone know if the weekend rerouting of the Downeaster to the WR is now a permanent thing? Or at least until service resumes on the Lowell Line at weekends? The line south of Bleachery is now dead at weekends

As an aside on the freight movements - the only daytime movements I've seen lately are Pan Am engine movements for, I believe, BO-1. The last 3 weeks through West Medford between 11:15 and 11:45 on a Tuesday, today it was MEC 507. Stuff moves at night.
  by Trinnau
 
The re-routing has to do with GLX and ATC projects, once those have done enough on the line to not need full track access they'll bring the Downeaster back to the Lowell Line. ATC needs to eventually go to the Western Route.
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