• Beacon Park Tracker

  • 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 nomis
 
The West end switch is currently connected to the 7 leftover tracks on the east end of Beacon Park, and the yard tracks that were not razed were still disconnected with no ladder to access the CP3 / Grand Junction / Houghton Chemical area. This was as of Sun / Monday.
  by fsdemasi
 
Photo of east end ladder with new grading to lead from CP 3 west.
  by Cosmo
 
Ummm, dude? Think you forgot the link.... :wink:
  by TurningOfTheWheel
 
I know my first post is a three-and-a-half-year bump, but there's been some pretty notable activity going on at BPY the past couple of weeks or so. See photos from the other day here: https://imgur.com/gallery/PFQWvYA

Today those piles of scrap metal were being moved and hauled away. Not sure what new developments are taking place that work has started up again.
  by BandA
 
If they finally establish ground power & layover for a few sets, they could move all the layover for Worcester Line trains out of BOS freeing up 1 or more tracks and reducing the number of crossing moves, effectively increasing terminal capacity slightly and freeing up space in Southhampton

Unclear to me as an outsider if the current configuration is going to survive the Ma$$ Pike reconstruction & Hahrvaad development. But it would be worth it even if it is only for a few years.
  by NRGeep
 
Has there been a decrease or increase in truck congestion on the Pike etc since Beacon Park yard closed?
  by johnpbarlow
 
Not a scientific observation but I drive down the Mass Pike extension between Newton and Boston a few times per month and I can't say I've noticed any more/less trucks running on this stretch since CSX re-trenched to Worcester. I don't recall CSX intermodal trains into/out of Boston being very long in the final years of Beacon Park usage but others might disagree. What I think has made a positive difference in traffic flow on the Pike around Beacon Park and the rte 128 interchange was the removal of toll booths as the Pike now deploys electronic tolling.
  by BandA
 
I don't know if there are more trucks but there are a lot more automobiles! The T and MassDOT have apparently spent a lot of money on this line in recent years and so far have little to show for it. Have they added more passenger trains since Beacon Park closed?
  by nomis
 
Considering the double-tracking of the mainline from CP-3 to CP-4 Boston Landing area after the closure, the volume of trains increased nominally, but ridership on the railroad exploded in the past 10 years or so. The double-tracking was a bottleneck for service, but the current antiquated Rule 261 signal system east of Framingham is a hindrance to adding additional peak direction trains on the line.

With schedules from https://www.dbperry.net/MBTA/#FraminghamWorcester looking back to when the MassDOT purchase announcement in 2009, as compared to today's schedule.

AM Rush: 8 to 12
AM Reverse-Peak: 5 to 8 (with 2 additional reverse-peak deadhead moves today)
Weekday Inbound: 21 to 28
Weekday Outbound: 20 to 26
  by BandA
 
I stand corrected, there have been some more trains. But I am still impatient, and the pike is so crowded.
  by QB 52.32
 
The Mass Pike truck-mile net result from closing Beacon Park is favorable because the demand that the yard supported moved west of the Rt 128 corridor out to the I-495, I-395, and Rt 146 corridors by and large. Central MA became the preferred terminal location for the big asset-based Intermodal Marketing Companies (IMC's) beginning in the early 1990's.

If you look at all that passenger vehicular traffic on the Pike, I'd say the real problem is the very low load-factor with most vehicles only occupied by the driver. And, unless parking capacity and/or RTA bus/train intermodal service usage improved at Worcester Line stations, increased service alone wouldn't generate the benefits necessary to make it worthwhile.
  by Komarovsky
 
nomis wrote: Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:15 pm Considering the double-tracking of the mainline from CP-3 to CP-4 Boston Landing area after the closure, the volume of trains increased nominally, but ridership on the railroad exploded in the past 10 years or so. The double-tracking was a bottleneck for service, but the current antiquated Rule 261 signal system east of Framingham is a hindrance to adding additional peak direction trains on the line.

With schedules from https://www.dbperry.net/MBTA/#FraminghamWorcester looking back to when the MassDOT purchase announcement in 2009, as compared to today's schedule.

AM Rush: 8 to 12
AM Reverse-Peak: 5 to 8 (with 2 additional reverse-peak deadhead moves today)
Weekday Inbound: 21 to 28
Weekday Outbound: 20 to 26
The magnitude of the ridership increase is even greater than the magnitude of the total number of trains added between 2012 and 2018. Looking at the passenger counts for the worceter line https://www.mass.gov/doc/worcester-line-2018-0/download there was a 45% total ridership increase.

If you really want folks along the pike corridor out of their cars and onto these trains though, you'll need to make the travel time more competitive in addition to increasing frequency. The trains that run express east of Natick have a roughly equivalent travel time to driving from the towns west of Framingham, and that's just to the stop along the line. If you have to get off the train and onto the subway and/or walk to your final destination, it can be faster to drive and park by a good margin.
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