• North Carolina NCDOT-Amtrak Piedmont Service

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by njtmnrrbuff
 
The days of a lot of the passenger equipment that Amtrak uses of both it's own equipment as well as state owned equipment are up there in age. The Amfleets are over 40 years old and the Horizons are up there too. The heritage cars owned by NCDOT are way up there in age. They probably still work ok, I'm sure. I rode them a few times in May of 2014 and appreciated them. If NCDOT has the money, then this is definately the time to seriously consider buying brand new equipment, especially to accommodate service growth. Here in the Northeast, the fact that Amtrak is short on its own equipment, has had negative effects. The New Haven to Springfield 400 series shuttle trains generally operate with two cars with one three car set out there as well. Since Amtrak is short on their own equipment, that has caused them to run two car trains on many of the New Haven to Springfield shuttles. That has resulted in overcrowding and people having to be turned away from the Amtrak shuttle trains. The State of Connecticut tells Amtrak what to do out there. If the State of Connecticut could have managed its money better just like NCDOT, then there would be longer Amtrak shuttle trains operating on the Springfield Line and probably Connecticut and MA would provide their own rolling stock with Amtrak markings on them to cover the shuttles. In a few weeks, select shuttle trains will be extended to Greenfield.
  by gokeefe
 
Station Aficionado wrote: Wed Aug 21, 2019 7:41 pmMaybe they can be handed down to some other state that wants to start a service.
There was one clear trend in these awards. FRA seems interested in reducing the presence of equipment where there might be reason to be concerned about safety (crash worthiness specifically).
  by Backshophoss
 
For ConnDOT,the "shoreliner I's" will cascade to the NHV-Springfield service when the MN/ConnDOT MLV II clones arrive.
NCDOT will grab an option from Siemens/Amtrak's single level car order (Amfleet replacement)or a BBD MLV II option from MN/LIRR(?)
  by electricron
 
Why am I reading what Metro North and CDOT are doing on a thread devoted to North Carolina Amtrak Piedmont trains? Must New Yorkers turn every discussion into being about them?

Whereas North Carolina will at some point in the future have to buy new rolling stock, that time is not here yet. Just recently they bought more heritage rolling stock from the Circus going out of business sale. They have plenty left over for any future expansions of service.

Most of the $76 million will be spent on the coach yard and maintenance facilities expansions in Charlotte, not on new rolling stock. It appears 13 new coaches will be ordered to support 4 train sets. Some quick math suggest just 3 new cars per train with 1 spare in maintenance.

Maybe those new 13 coaches will be used on Amtrak's Carolinia services instead, 2 train sets of 6 cars each with 1 spare in maintenance. Actually used on tracks where the new cars can go 125 mph on - the NEC.
  by gokeefe
 
Not the case. The press release clearly states that "The coaches will replace the 1950s and '60s-era coaches currently in use and expand overall fleet capacity."
  by mtuandrew
 
And the only real game in town is Siemens. As far as I know, no one else is currently making conventional intercity passenger cars on this continent but Siemens, CAF with the Viewliners, and Stadler by special request. I suppose Bombardier too, if you count the MLV and BiLevel; I’m not counting Talgo since they’re persona non grata at FRA, nor CRRC as the Federal government has been refusing to cost-match for Chinese equipment.

Very interesting that FRA is leaning so heavily on states to buy new.
  by gokeefe
 
mtuandrew wrote: Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:32 pmVery interesting that FRA is leaning so heavily on states to buy new.
Very much agreed. This is new for them. In the past they seem to have been far more involved in track and signal issues as opposed to rolling stock when considering passenger service grants.

The exception to this recently has been the Amtrak HSR procurement which they've been heavily involved in for quite some time. Conventional speed rolling stock was, until recently, not a typical priority.

It is unclear if the existence of an active assembly line with a high quality product is "driving the train" or if this is a coincidence of factors including recent experience with the Cascades in Washington State.

Much to their credit North Carolina recognized the ground shifting under their feet and (perhaps with a little encouragement) applied for a grant to find new equipment.

I would note that for other neighboring states it is one thing to see NCDOT running a patchwork fleet of Heritage equipment, it is another matter entirely to see the same sleek cars as the "those Florida trains". The questions of "Why can't we have this here?" are going to occur on places where that discussion has previously been avoided.

Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham may not compete with New York but you can bet your last dime that the Metro Atlanta Chamber is not going to be happy at the prospect of appearing to fall behind the Tar Heel State.
  by Alex M
 
It would be interesting if the folks at NCDOT got a chance and rode the brightline trains and were impressed enough to take the plunge, so to speak, and begin to re-equip their trains. I wonder if this order will be simply tacked on to the midwest Siemens order? Would it include cab control cars for one end?
  by gokeefe
 
No idea. But fair enough to say Siemens has made the rounds.
  by Station Aficionado
 
gokeefe wrote: Thu Aug 22, 2019 5:05 pm No idea. But fair enough to say Siemens has made the rounds.
Perhaps including the FRA.
  by mtuandrew
 
Alex M wrote: Thu Aug 22, 2019 4:38 pm It would be interesting if the folks at NCDOT got a chance and rode the brightline trains and were impressed enough to take the plunge, so to speak, and begin to re-equip their trains. I wonder if this order will be simply tacked on to the midwest Siemens order? Would it include cab control cars for one end?
It could. Has to be inconvenient to turn those F59s or the entire train, and I bet NCDOT could get close to an additional turn with cab cars and shorter station stops.
  by gokeefe
 
Another item worth noting: NCDOT was the biggest beneficiary of this round of funding by far. NCDOT's award: $76,888,000, next closest was MassDOT: $41,183,845. PennDOT actually had their request reduced by $12,458,764 to $15,140,236 from $27,600,000.
  by WhartonAndNorthern
 
mtuandrew wrote: Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:12 pm
It could. Has to be inconvenient to turn those F59s or the entire train, and I bet NCDOT could get close to an additional turn with cab cars and shorter station stops.
I thought they had NPCUs.

Are these new cars a complete replacement, an augmentation, or a phase out of the oldest cars? They also acquired some Ringling Bros. stock to add a 4th set.

Edit: http://on-track-on-line.com/amtk-roster ... html#NCDOT says they have 5 NPCUs, 14 coaches, plus 10 coaches undergoing conversion(8 of which are ex-RBBX). The oldest coaches date to 1960, the rest from 1964-1965. The 5 baggage/lounge/bike/vending (with an additional 2 undergoing conversion) date to 1952 and 1953.
  by gokeefe
 
WhartonAndNorthern wrote: Mon Aug 26, 2019 9:15 amAre these new cars a complete replacement, an augmentation, or a phase out of the oldest cars?
It's not entirely clear from the press release but the mention of spare parts issues seems to imply disposal of any "one offs".
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