• BART, Amtrak exploring possible joint transbay crossing

  • 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

  by Jeff Smith
 
I’ll cross-post to both California/Amtrak forums: Trains.com
SAN FRANCISCO — Bay Area Rapid Transit and Amtrak are joining forces to study the possibility of a second San Francisco Bay rail crossing, creating the possibility of one-seat Amtrak rides between Sacramento and downtown San Francisco.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports the concept is to run two sets of tracks across the bay, either in a tube (as with the existing BART crossing) or on a bridge). Each operation would have its own set of tracks, since BART uses 5-foot-6 broad gauge.
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  by Arlington
 
Why would a standard gauge electrified crossing be an "Amtrak" sponsored question, and not a Caltrans?
Doesn't Caltrans (or CAHSR) have more of a claim to own the Oakland landing of such a tunnel?
  by Arlington
 
How is it even in Amtrak's budget to study it?

Is there an LD expansion & new stations budget I missed?
If this expands state supported, it has always been the state sponsors who lead

And it matters that Amtrak owns nothing in CA and won't be the CAHSR operator, because, conversely, on the NEC the thing that as justified such studies is because there Amtrak does have a budget for planning service for its own account.
  by tomj
 
The Capitol Corridor and San Joaquin are administered by respective "joint powers agencies" or effectively federations of local transit agencies. So they are putting resources to this and eventually CalTrans will get called in. This is a good exhibition of the stupidest parts of California politics, the plethora of local agencies and "local control" that add costs and confusion to the general public in the name of scoring political points.
  by mtuandrew
 
benboston wrote:They could also do dual-gauge right?
Nope, BART isn’t a Federally-regulated railroad but rather a rapid transit system. A system like BART can’t legally share track or right-of-way with a railroad like Amtrak, nor would either one accept such a tunnel.
  by Backshophoss
 
Somehow Amtrak running out of 4th & Townsend station under JPBX catenary with Superliners,Surfliners,and Capital Corridor cars
at bit of a stretch to head south to San Jose or running thru a Trans Bay tube to head north or east.
A west coast fleet of ACS-64's is also waay out there in left field as well
  by Nasadowsk
 
tomj wrote:This is a good exhibition of the stupidest parts of California politics, the plethora of local agencies and "local control" that add costs and confusion to the general public in the name of scoring political points.
Meanwhile, I can't buy a ticket from the closest train station to my home here in NJ to the closest train station to my parent's home on Long Island, even though the trains I'll transfer between go into the same station, run over the same tracks, and use the same platforms. Of course, my car's EZ-Pass works pretty much everywhere between Maine and Virginia, except for that one stupid bridge between Atlantic Beach and Long island, where the toll exists to pay the toll takers' salary...

California doesn't have a monopoly in mass transit stupidity....

(Or stupidity in general..)
  by tomj
 
Nasadowsk wrote:
California doesn't have a monopoly in mass transit stupidity....

(Or stupidity in general..)
California does have a lot of it though and the stupidity isn't limited to transit agencies, but local government in general. I figure it exists because everyone needs a political career to get into the legislature and having a plethora of boards makes that easier. Although, in NJ, you can get in through corrupt means, we just waste money and cause confusion when something completely * the bed. Like the DMV, the JC system et all.
  by lpetrich
 
mtuandrew wrote:
benboston wrote:They could also do dual-gauge right?
Nope, BART isn’t a Federally-regulated railroad but rather a rapid transit system. A system like BART can’t legally share track or right-of-way with a railroad like Amtrak, nor would either one accept such a tunnel.
There is also the problem of scheduling the trains so that they will coexist.

So I suspect that it would be a four-track tunnel, two for BART and two for regional and intercity trains, like the 69th St. - Queens tunnel in New York City. One pair of tracks for NYC subway trains and the other pair for the LIRR.
  by tomj
 
lpetrich wrote: So I suspect that it would be a four-track tunnel, two for BART and two for regional and intercity trains, like the 69th St. - Queens tunnel in New York City. One pair of tracks for NYC subway trains and the other pair for the LIRR.
This is what BART and CAHSRA originally planned for.
  by Arlington
 
Did the Transbay Terminal's lowest level (HSR) leave room for a tunnel that would "un-terminal" it and enter/leave on the Northeast, parallel to Mission and Howard Strees and out across the bay, somewhere between the existing BART tunnel and the landing of the SF-Oakland Bay Bridge?

Recall that as currently envisioned by CAHSR, they'll use it as a terminal, entering and leaving from the southwest
  by east point
 
mtuandrew wrote:
benboston wrote:They could also do dual-gauge right?
Nope, BART isn’t a Federally-regulated railroad but rather a rapid transit system. A system like BART can’t legally share track or right-of-way with a railroad like Amtrak, nor would either one accept such a tunnel.

Well --------- Yes and no.

When the costs of 4 different tubes for BART and Caltrain/Amtrak are compared to 2 shared tubes there could be a change. If the present speaker of the house is still speaker the large California delegation could introduce a bill to somehow exempt the tube's use from having any regulatory problem. Now would it pass the Senate is another question?
  by The EGE
 
BART will never mix with any mainline railroad. It operates on very tight schedules on a closed, grade-separated system with fully automatic train operation. There's no way you could add heavier mainline trains with slower acceleration and completely different train control systems without ruining BART's ability to act as a rapid transit system. Far, far better to build a 4-track tube and have all the capacity you need for many decades to come.