Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

  by ElectricTraction
M-8s do not normally run on the Harlem and Hudson, but they have been spotted there on a few occasions.
Ridgefielder wrote: Wed Oct 06, 2021 9:25 amI believe the bulk of the traffic between Oak Point and mainland points to the north & west comes in via the Oak Point Connector, which links the yard with the ex-NYC at Highbridge in The Bronx and replaced the old NYC Port Morris Branch. The only exceptions I can think of are the P&W "stone train" and the CSX local that switches the small handful of customers (Tulnoy Lumber in The Bronx, Endico Foods in Mt. Vernon, Marval Industries in Mamaroneck) that remain on the Harlem Division and the New Haven main in Westchester. There certainly isn't enough to provide any meaningful interference with passenger traffic on the Hell Gate Route.
100% of freight from the national rail network comes in via the Oak Point Connector. The P&W stone trains roll by from Connecticut, but they don't serve Oak Point yard. The Port Morris Branch is long gone, and CSX in theory could run traffic from Cedar Hill to Oak Point, but they don't. CSX local service ends from Cedar Hill in Bridgeport, and from Oak Point in Darien, there is a gap with no local freight service between the two, for which CSX owns trackage rights, but does not have any customers to serve. There's quite a bit of traffic through Oak Point itself between NY&A interchange traffic, and serving industries and I think transload in Oak Point itself, plus the customers around the corner.
  by pbj123
Now that Penn Station Access is a go it is in the best interest of both Metro North and Amtrak to improve Shell interlocking by eliminating conflicts with flyovers?
  by njtmnrrbuff
Would be nice to have a flyover at CP216 but because I-95 probably runs so closely alongside the right of way south of NRO, there is no room to build the flyover. Today, southbound Amtrak trains often run for miles on Track 2 which provides access to the center island platform at NRO-this eliminates having to cross over all four tracks at CP216. Northbound Amtrak’s typically use track 4 at NRO. I think when MNR starts running to NYP, similar practices will be put in place for which tracks MNR East Bronx Access Trains will use.
  by Jeff Smith
I would think outside of peak hours, you'd use 1 and 4 (the former 6) for outbound, and 2 (the former 4) and 3 for inbound. I think the flyover idea was dismissed long ago as too expensive, but agree with NJT^ that the lack of space was probably driving the cost. The current setup seems much better. I will say any time I've passed through NRO, whether Amtrak or MNRR, that island platform always looks busy. It will be a lot busier for sure. And, if any off-peak MNRR NYP service is an NRO shuttle, you've got the NRO electrified yard tracks for turns, so as not to clog track 4.
  by MNCRR9000
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) has approved a design-build contract for the Penn Station Access Project, which will provide direct Metro-North service from the Bronx, Westchester and Connecticut to Penn Station and Manhattan’s west side. Penn Station Access will drastically reduce travel times for people who live and work in the East Bronx, an area currently without any rail service. The contract will be awarded to Halmar International, LLC/RailWorks, J.V.

“Metro-North is coming to the east Bronx, and bringing faster commutes with it,” said Governor Hochul. “This one project by itself is a big step forward for environmental justice, environmentally sustainable transportation, the Bronx economy and regional interconnectivity, and yet another example of our ongoing efforts to make sure that all New Yorkers have the modernized transportation systems they deserve.”

There are almost 250,000 residents and over 100,000 jobs within a half mile of the four stations, which can have service as frequent as every 20 minutes in the peak period. The new service will save East Bronx riders up to approximately 50 minutes in each direction to Penn Station, and up to 75 minutes in each direction to Connecticut. Current New Haven Line riders with destinations on the west side will save up to 40 minutes per day since travel from Grand Central will not be necessary.
https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/govern ... ss-project

https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews ... l-repairs/

https://patch.com/new-york/newrochelle/ ... -gate-line
  by njtmnrrbuff
It’s possible that Track 1 may be used for outbounds especially if let’s say there is a parked MNR train on Track 3 at NRO. Absolutely-there is no question that that island platform at NRO is always busy. MNR northbound trains serve that platform at least twice an hour many times each day. Amtrak trains serve the center island platform both ways. When MNR starts running to to NYP, the NRO station is going to get even busier. It will be interesting to see how many trains on the current NHV Line timetable could go NYP in the future.
  by njtmnrrbuff
Shell Int or (CP216) Flyover-not happening-the reason is that I-95 runs right alongside the New Haven Line south of New Rochelle. Building a flyover would involve having to build a structure over some of the highway lanes that would hold the rails. Not only would the construction affect highway traffic. It would be too much money. The present arrangement at NRO involves many southbound Amtrak trains using Track 1 and northbound Amtraks using Track 4 which both connect to the center island platform at NRO. Trains using both tracks 1 and 4 on the New Haven Line that are running to NYP don't have to cross all four tracks at NRO Station.
  by ElectricTraction
pbj123 wrote: Tue Dec 14, 2021 5:44 pmNow that Penn Station Access is a go it is in the best interest of both Metro North and Amtrak to improve Shell interlocking by eliminating conflicts with flyovers?
The study describes how Shell Interlocking will be improved with additional crossovers to allow multiple trains to be crossing over in parallel at the same time. There is no physical space for a crossover, it would run into a bunch of streets in New Rochelle.
  by BM6569
is most of the 2 track route south of NRO going to be expanded to 4 tracks? Would be nice if Amtrak could sneak the Pelham Bay drawbridge project into the ongoing work since that is in their NEC plans.
  by nomis
Yes, 3-4 tracks but south of the Pelham Bay Bridge area... presentation maps here
  by BM6569
The NE Corridor Commission has the Pelham Bay Bridge on their wish list.

"Full Project Scope: This project would replace the century-old movable Pelham Bay Bridge, which crosses the Hutchinson River in the Bronx, with either a new, low-level movable, mid-level movable, or a high-level fixed bridge with clearance for marine traffic. Additional funding is required for evaluation of these alternatives and to commence Preliminary Engineering. Option 1: Two 2-track 70 mph mid-level moveable bridges Option 2: Retain the 2-track 45 mph low-level moveable bridge for trains stopping at Co-op City Station and construct two 1-track 100 mph high-level fixed bridges on each side for express trains. This project also includes an 80 mph improved Pelham Lane Interlocking replacing Pelham Bay Interlocking.

Project Justification: The Pelham Bay Bridge was built in 1907, and the existing Pelham Bay Bridge is a speed restriction on the fastest part of the Hell Gate Line. The movable span consists of a two-track 82-foot long through truss. This bridge creates a bottleneck by constricting traffic down to speeds of 45 mph. The aging bridge still opens frequently for marine traffic and occasionally fails to properly close, creating delays for Amtrak service between Boston and New York as well as delays in freight and commuter service, which use the line. This asset will not provide the reliability needed for future expansion of train operations until the movable span is upgraded. With added MNR PSA trains it will become even more of a capacity bottleneck on the east side of the proposed Co-op City Station."

  by njtmnrrbuff
It should not be a matter of if for the Pelham Bay Bridge replacement. It's been in the plans to replace it for some time. Having ridden across that bridge so many times on Amtrak plus visited a relative of mine in Co-op City, I can see that it's been time to replace the bridge. I would be for an option that doesn't include keeping the existing movable bridge-even if it involves two track 70 mid level bridges. The 45 mph speed limit over the existing Pelham Bay Bridge certainly slows trains down a little when they could be moving a little faster over a brand new bridge. Right now, there is 62 months left until MNR's East Bronx Service is supposed to start running. Hopefully within the next year or two, Amtrak could decide which bridge option is the best and build it in time for the MNR service.
  by Yellowspoon
What about the 3rd rail shoes? Will the 3rd rail shoes foul the LIRR 3rd rail? Are the shoes retractable? Will they have dedicated shoeless cars that can not go to GCT?

I see that East Side Access is scheduled for December (13th?). Will MN start running to Penn that day?

I apologize if these have been previously addressed, but I would have to wade through 1800+ previous posts in this thread.
  by GirlOnTheTrain
The third rail shoes on the M8s are designed to accommodate both MNR-style and LIRR-style third rail. They're more or less spring loaded and can bend up or down to accommodate the under-running and over-running.
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