• Needham Line

  • 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 chrisf
 
charlesriverbranch wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 8:30 am https://universalhub.com/2021/theyve-be ... velong-day

It's not clear from the article if the replacement bridge will accommodate a future second track, or if space is merely being left for a second bridge.
The new bridge is one track wide. Any additional tracks would require adding additional spans. The original abutments are still there but have been modified and were at least 2 tracks wide.
  by Trinnau
 
The bridge girder toward the 2nd track was designed to be strong enough to act as a center girder so a second span could be added to the new bridge. Additional trackage through here is too uncertain/far in the future to spend money on it now.
  by Arborwayfan
 
That's an interesting provision -- and a good idea.
  by west point
 
It is so much cheaper in the long run to go ahead and at least place all columns needed for a second track now not later.
  by HenryAlan
 
Perhaps I misunderstand your meaning, but this new bridge does not have column supports. The weight is entirely supported by abutments on either side of the span. And the existing abutments can support up to a tri-track ROW.
Last edited by CRail on Wed Jun 16, 2021 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Unnecessary quote removed. Do not use the "Quote" button as a "Reply" button.
  by chrisf
 
The existing abutments really aren't being used for the new bridge. There are piles that were driven and the bridge is on those. On the outbound side of the bridge, the old stone abutments have been cut away at the top so there's a pretty significant gap between the underside of the span and the stone. I don't believe any additional pilings were driven for bridge expansion. On the inbound side there are new concrete bump-outs to support the new bridge. Again, there wasn't work done to support a second span at that time.
Last edited by CRail on Wed Jun 16, 2021 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Unnecessary quote removed. Do not use the "Quote" button as a "Reply" button.
  by Trinnau
 
As previously noted, the one beam is large enough to be a future center beam, and the piles under said beam are large enough to be center piles. Not worth driving the other set of piles right now as there are currently no plans for additional trackage - unlike on the Worcester Line where they are rebuilding 2 bridges with 3 bays for a future third track that is about to go into design. The work they've done at Roberts Street is enough to not have to re-do anything they just did should a second span be added in the not-too-distant future. Another set of piles is additional cost that isn't justified right now. This is just one of many bridges that would need double-tracking should the Needham Line get to that point, and it can be rolled into that contract if/when it comes.
  by chrisf
 
MBTA has announced schedule changes beginning on June 28. For the first time in probably many decades, the Needham Line will have service 7 days a week and on holidays. There's no change to the roughly hourly weekday schedules in this, and weekend service will run on a 2 hour schedule as used to be the case on the earlier Saturday schedule.
It looks like all lines may move to a 7 day a week schedule but a few of them have not yet been posted.
  by charlesriverbranch
 
Sunday Needham service is welcome news. Last Sunday, coming home from Maine, I took the Worcester line to Wellesley Farms and walked to Needham from there. I didn't want to play games with the Green Line D branch, which seems perpetually to be under construction, and the walk from Wellesley Farms, while about ten minutes longer than the walk from Eliot, is a lot more pleasant.
  by The EGE
 
Looking at my old timetables, Needham had Sunday service in 1915 but not 1937, so it's been a bit more than 7 decades. This means the entire MBTA rail system - save for the Stoughton Branch and the two South County stations - has 7-day-a-week service.
  by Trinnau
 
Lack of Sunday Needham service was, at least in more recent history, because the community didn't want the trains (noise).
  by charlesriverbranch
 
Why would Sunday trains be any noisier than Saturday trains?

I live in Needham Heights and am listening to a train right now approaching the West Street crossing. The noise is no big deal.
  by Trinnau
 
They aren't, perhaps the community just wanted Sunday to be quiet.

When the public meeting was held for PTC shutdowns along the Needham Line, every member of the public who attended was only concerned about construction noise, they didn't care that the trains weren't running.
  by BandA
 
What is the "market penetration" (percent of adults 22-65) in Needham who take the train? And as compared to surrounding towns...
  by Mbtagp40mc
 
BandA wrote:What is the "market penetration" (percent of adults 22-65) in Needham who take the train? And as compared to surrounding towns...
I took the 6:40 AM train every weekday pre-Covid and usually we were jam packed by the time we left Hersey. Haven’t taken it since, but I’m sure that it’s not going back to that anytime soon. I will say that I saw a fair amount of people taking the Saturday trains before they were suspended.

With the traffic getting as bad as it is, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Sunday trains doing quite well for people who don’t want to sit on the Pike forever or find parking in Boston.
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