• The Pascack Valley Line Thread

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

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  by SecaucusJunction
 
Isnt Suffern yard already full? I dont think they could fit the Woodbine trains up there. There was talk of NS conveying Hillburn yard to NJT so they could expand their passenger yard there but that never happened. That yard is busier than ever.
  by ajt
 
That's the regular cycle for train 52's equipment, 52-1621-1630-57. Had been 6 cars; 7th was added in the past few weeks.

Re:

  by fredct
 
sullivan1985 wrote:
BlockLine_4111 wrote: Just about every passenger who rides from the Southern Tier gets off at Secaucus for New York or Newark and the rest go to Hoboken for the PATH trains, ferry or light rail. There is a handful of riders at most that transfer at Secaucus for the Pascack Valley. Rebuilding an entire rail line for the possibility that a handful of people might use it doesn't make sense.
At the same time, it may be that no one does this because its horribly inconvenient. Perhaps if there was a more convenient option it would be used, who knows.

Example: If I was to use public transit for commuting, I would need to do an M&E to Main/Bergen transfer in the morning at Secaucux, which at best is a 20-30 minute wait most of the time. Chances are very few people do this switch, but maybe its because its so inconvenient, rather than that there's no anyone who actually wants to.
  by IRFCA_RRfan
 
Fredct - you are quite right. I do the M/B - M/E switch in the other direction in the mornings to reach work (Rutherford to Morris Plains).
I have only 1 choice and 1 shot at doing it. If anything goes awry in terms of weather/incidents and I miss the connection, I should basically just go back home.
It is even worse in the evenings as most evening rush hour MDs do not stop at Secaucus (why?) and Hoboken connections are bad too. Somethimes I will take the PVL instead of M/B and have someone pick me up.

As mentioned elsewhere, NJT is poorly suited (putting it mildly) for intra-state travel when it comes to taking the train to work.
  by henry6
 
Don't confuse "RAPID TRANSIT" with "COMMUTER RAIL". The two are entirely different operating and equipment philosophies. But, if such close connections are needed, as in the cases cited above, and there are enough customers needing such connections at a given time, NJT Rail marketing needs to look into it. If it is only one or two people once a day, then there is probably no hope. If it is a dozen people at the same time everyday, then, it might meand something should be done. If it is hundreds of people day in and day out, then marketing has missed the train or bus or whatever it takes to make it work.
  by fredct
 
henry6 wrote:Don't confuse "RAPID TRANSIT" with "COMMUTER RAIL". The two are entirely different operating and equipment philosophies. But, if such close connections are needed, as in the cases cited above, and there are enough customers needing such connections at a given time, NJT Rail marketing needs to look into it. If it is only one or two people once a day, then there is probably no hope. If it is a dozen people at the same time everyday, then, it might mean something should be done. If it is hundreds of people day in and day out, then marketing has missed the train or bus or whatever it takes to make it work.
Agreed, although I do understand the difficulties of figuring out which connections would mean something to ridership. You could do a survey, but how many people know themselves what they really would or wouldn't do? How would you know you got a representative sample? You could try it and find out, but that's expensive and these things may take a while to catch on anyway, so a short sample period isn't necessarily all that accurate either.

All I know is that whether there's high demand or not, awful connections will mean little to no actual usage. Where the connections serve to utilize high demand versus where its pointless cause there was no real demand anyway, is a near impossible question to answer in advance.


One more thought: commuter rail, as currently thought of, really only functions well to service central locations - a big city or two - where people can then change to rapid transit, and do the reverse on the way home. That's fine, and its important, but it will never service the suburb-to-suburb commuter, unless you happen to be so lucky as to be going from one stop to another on the same line, with your destination within walking distance of the work stop.

Bus service suffers the same problem - inconvenient connections with only a small likelihood that one line will get you where you want to go. If you want to really service a suburb-to-suburb commuter, you need something more like rapid transit. Frequent service which therefore guarantees short connection times, and a variety of criss-crossed lines that you can transfer between. How the heck you do that over modestly long distances at a reasonable cost, I have no idea (light rail might be the closest, but generally travels too slowly).

And its not just NJT, look at any other commuter lines in the country - Boston, San Fran, Chicago - all are set up to service in and out commuters - to and from the city - not to move people perpendicularly.
  by henry6
 
Again we must point to the highway lobby from the 40's up to today who pushed automobiles upon the American public while ignoring real public transportation programs. Agencies like NJT have been "up against it" and are trying very hard to play catch up. Commuting patterns in New Jersey were based on individual private railroad lines from the early mid 1800's. The proliferation of automobiles and the maze of highways 125 years later allowed for different patterns to form and buses were deemed the vehicle of mass transit. Now, today, congestion, fuel prices, and environmental concerns have caught up to us and NJT, MNRR, LIRR, etc., are trying their darndest against a stunned and uninformed public whose leaders are just as stunned and uninformed. Plus, there is actually no money laying around to do what has to be done, so it virtually has to be printed or mined from somewhere. I don't envy for one minute, an urban planner's or a transportation planner's job today!
  by Port Jervis
 
sullivan1985 wrote:
ff4405 wrote:I rode the 1:49 (PVL 1621) from Hoboken on Monday which had 7 cars. Was this an equipment move or is there a new set on the PVL with 7 cars?
7 cars sounds like a bit much. Could be just all that was available. As long as both ends have SES equipment on board, they can go to Spring Valley.
I've ridden this run several times, it's always 6 or 7 cars long. Usually it's a consist which comes from the yard, runs to SV, returns to Hoboken as the 3:45 and is in position to run back at the peak of the afternoon rush.

BTW, what's the limit on train lengths for NJT diesels? Metro-North consists are capped at 7 cars.
  by sullivan1985
 
Port Jervis wrote:BTW, what's the limit on train lengths for NJT diesels? Metro-North consists are capped at 7 cars.
7 sounds about right. PL42AC's might be able to handle an extra car or two.

ALP44: 10 Single Level, 8 Multi Level
ALP46: 12 Single Level, 10 Multi Level (2 engines used when more then 10 ML cars)
  by Hawaiitiki
 
Does anyone have any information about a former station on the PVL, Hillsdale Manor. I was screwing around on google maps and its still marked on the map as being a populated place. On historical maps of the PVL, its always listed as having its own station in addition to Woodcliff Lake and Hillsdale. Nowadays, there is a private fully-functional crossing where it was probably located but thats all I know.
  by oknazevad
 
The Machine wrote:
Hawaiitiki wrote:Does anyone have any information about a former station on the PVL, Hillsdale Manor. I was screwing around on google maps and its still marked on the map as being a populated place. On historical maps of the PVL, its always listed as having its own station in addition to Woodcliff Lake and Hillsdale. Nowadays, there is a private fully-functional crossing where it was probably located but thats all I know.
I know the area well. What do you mean by a private crossing?
I believe he means off of Broadway opposite the former location of Matsu (the Japanese restaurant) where there's a complex of, I believe, senior housing. Used to be the driveway to a large, estate-like building on the grounds, but it was redeveloped, and the crossing upgraded some 10 or so years ago.

And, I believe you are correct that that is the approximate location of the former Hillsdale Manor station. Which, despite having grown up in Hillsdale (and sitting in it while I type this), I had never heard of until I read about it in this forum, on a thread about former stations that included mileage posts. Checking quickly, the Mapquest location point for Hillsdale Manor puts it directly opposite Shop-Rite, where the employee parking lot is. So it was somewhere around there.

Of course, to me, the great irony is that the nearby street Coles Crossing isn't even a crossing anymore. Too many dumb kids driving down the hill and ramping off the tracks (the road has the profile of a W), damaging their cars. Can't say I never did it, but I was young and stupid then, too.
  by oknazevad
 
Did some more digging, courtesy of Google. actually found some good stuff. Here, from the Hillsdale Free Public Library, in their digital archives, is an actual picture of the place: http://hillsdale.bccls.org/localhistory ... onDesc.pdf

According to the map of Hillsdale Manor from here:http://hillsdale.bccls.org/localhistory ... norMap.pdf the station was adjacent to the Parkview Dr. crossing. Indeed, the circular driveway that once led to it from Summit Ave. (now Broadway) is partly intact, going around the shopping plaza there. Funny, I had a high school classmate that lived right on that curving section of Clinton Ave. Cool.
  by sullivan1985
 
The Machine wrote:
Hawaiitiki wrote:Does anyone have any information about a former station on the PVL, Hillsdale Manor. I was screwing around on google maps and its still marked on the map as being a populated place. On historical maps of the PVL, its always listed as having its own station in addition to Woodcliff Lake and Hillsdale. Nowadays, there is a private fully-functional crossing where it was probably located but thats all I know.
I know the area well. What do you mean by a private crossing?

I believe this is in reference to Barones Crossing. I've never seen traffic here, and it looks like a driveway, yet it has flashers and gates.
  by duey
 
Rail Ridership Surges in Rockland

NANUET - Shortly after 11 a.m. yesterday, Jennifer Moccio was at the Nanuet train station.

She was on her way to a second interview for a marketing job in midtown Manhattan, and said the train was easily her best choice.


"The express buses don't leave during the middle of the day so that's not an option. And then this is a lot easier. There's a guaranteed time you're getting there," said Moccio, a New City resident. "Hopefully, I'll be taking it often."

A year ago, Moccio wouldn't have been able to take an NJ Transit train on the Pascack Valley Line during the middle of the day - or late at night or on the weekend.

But since the introduction of off-peak and weekend service Oct. 28, ridership from Rockland has soared on the line, which has stops in Spring Valley, Nanuet and Pearl River. Weekly ridership is up 40 percent from spring 2007 to spring 2008 as a result of the added service, as well as commuters' turning to mass transit to combat high gas prices.

Metro-North Railroad said weekly ridership averaged 11,634, the highest in the line's history. It has been averaging 8,305 weekly.

"Not only did the addition of weekday off-peak service make sense for the occasional customer, but we believe it made the line more attractive to would-be peak-hour commuters who wanted the safety net of a way to get home early," Metro-North President Howard Permut said in a statement.

NJ Transit operates passenger rail service in Rockland and Orange counties under a special agreement with Metro-North.

The figures represent only riders in New York, but NJ Transit this week said ridership on the Bergen County, N.J., portion of the line rose nearly 16 percent from January to March compared with the same three months last year.

NJ Transit's rail ridership was up 5.3 percent during the same three-month period from 2007, while ridership increased 8 percent on the Main/Bergen Line, which stops in Suffern.

"The trend is there. What's interesting is these numbers pre-date the more recent surges in gas prices," NJ Transit spokeswoman Courtney Carroll said yesterday.

That's evident on the Pascack Valley Line, which carries 975 morning peak commuters. Ridership during the morning rush has increased by 22 percent since fall and 30 percent since spring 2007, Metro-North officials said.

Perhaps the main challenge facing the rail agencies is making people aware of the new service, which includes 16 weekday trains - nine inbound to Secaucus and Hoboken and seven outbound - and a dozen trains in each direction on Saturdays and Sundays.

Word appears to be spreading.

In the fall, 35 people on average traveled on the off-peak inbound trains, like the one Moccio took. By spring, that figure was up to 119.

More than 2,100 trips are made each weekday on the line.

Metro-North said weekend ridership on the line has jumped more than 60 percent since fall - 75 percent on Saturdays and nearly 50 percent on Sundays - to about 800 trips.
http://www.lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti ... 8808150355

For the regular rider, this is not news. Trains have clearly been more crowded, and the Nanuet lot for one has certainly had more cars in it on the weekends. The good things in life are worth waiting for, and we in Rockland (and the PVL overall) definitely waited long enough for the off-peak service.
  by Pete
 
oknazevad wrote:
The Machine wrote:
Hawaiitiki wrote:Does anyone have any information about a former station on the PVL, Hillsdale Manor. I was screwing around on google maps and its still marked on the map as being a populated place. On historical maps of the PVL, its always listed as having its own station in addition to Woodcliff Lake and Hillsdale. Nowadays, there is a private fully-functional crossing where it was probably located but thats all I know.
I know the area well. What do you mean by a private crossing?
I believe he means off of Broadway opposite the former location of Matsu (the Japanese restaurant) where there's a complex of, I believe, senior housing. Used to be the driveway to a large, estate-like building on the grounds, but it was redeveloped, and the crossing upgraded some 10 or so years ago.

And, I believe you are correct that that is the approximate location of the former Hillsdale Manor station. Which, despite having grown up in Hillsdale (and sitting in it while I type this), I had never heard of until I read about it in this forum, on a thread about former stations that included mileage posts. Checking quickly, the Mapquest location point for Hillsdale Manor puts it directly opposite Shop-Rite, where the employee parking lot is. So it was somewhere around there.

Of course, to me, the great irony is that the nearby street Coles Crossing isn't even a crossing anymore. Too many dumb kids driving down the hill and ramping off the tracks (the road has the profile of a W), damaging their cars. Can't say I never did it, but I was young and stupid then, too.
Hillsdale Manor station:

http://digilib.syr.edu/cdm4/item_viewer ... OX=1&REC=2

Was this station built by the people who developed the neighborhood as shown in the map, or did it serve some other purpose?

Occasionally people who have lived in Hillsdale a long time will refer to "the Manor section" of town. It's an old name that, if I had to guess, probably last had any real life when the most recent major wave of residential development happened in that area in the post-war years. With the kind of population turnover expensive bedroom communities like Hillsdale have (a lot of retirees tend to move to cheaper places after taking advantage of schools, commuting, etc.), local lore like this name can fade easily. Do people still say "Royal hills"? This was another subdivision name -- the last large one in the town, I believe -- on the western edge of the town, that engrained itself as an unofficial place name.

Also of note: Coles Crossing (which was "Cole's Crossing Rd." not so many years ago -- seems to have been truncated on the sign) is presumably a reference to Isaac Cole, who had a large estate on the site of ShopRite.

That crossing was closed off ten or fifteen years ago, again a rough guess.

The cobblestone building across Broadway from Park View Drive looks like it's of the same vintage as the station. Don't know if they were related.
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