• All Things Portal Bridge: Amtrak and NJT Status and Replacement Discussion

  • This forum will be for issues that don't belong specifically to one NYC area transit agency, but several. For instance, intra-MTA proposals or MTA-wide issues, which may involve both Metro-North Railroad (MNRR) and the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). Other intra-agency examples: through running such as the now discontinued MNRR-NJT Meadowlands special. Topics which only concern one operating agency should remain in their respective forums.
This forum will be for issues that don't belong specifically to one NYC area transit agency, but several. For instance, intra-MTA proposals or MTA-wide issues, which may involve both Metro-North Railroad (MNRR) and the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). Other intra-agency examples: through running such as the now discontinued MNRR-NJT Meadowlands special. Topics which only concern one operating agency should remain in their respective forums.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

  • 760 posts
  • 1
  • 37
  • 38
  • 39
  • 40
  • 41
  • 51
  by ExCon90
 
This is the first I've heard of Joseph Clift, quoted in the news story as saying the new tunnels are more important than Portal Bridge; I'd be interested in knowing how the trains are supposed to get to the tunnels if something isn't done about Portal Bridge.
  by Greg Moore
 
I suspect the idea is two-fold:
1) The talk is all about the tunnels failing sooner rather than later due to Sandy.
2) Worst case, I suppose you could still run trains to/from Seacacus if the Portal Bridge gets stuck open.

(and other than falling down, a Portal bridge outage is probably measured in hours or days, not months or years like a tunnel failure).
  by ApproachMedium
 
2) No, because you need Portal to get to Secaucus.
  by Greg Moore
 
I don't think I was clear, sorry. You can still run trains from NYP to Secaucus and still serve a large number of NJ passengers even if Portal is out of commission.
  by 25Hz
 
Matt Johnson wrote:At one point at least the plan was for two new 2 track bridges:
No, one was 3 tracks and one was 2. One would be higher than the other and related to ARC/gateway, and the other one would connect directly to the existing tracks at each end. That has all changed, and we'd need a funded gateway project plus a new 4 track dock upstream lift span to get that second 3 track bridge now. I think we may end up with two separate 2 track bridges, one totally new new for gateway alignment, and one to replace portal.
  by JCGUY
 
I am also wondering how many tracks the potential span would bear. However, the article mentions that the design work is done. Does anyone know what was designed in terms of number of tracks?

I have no idea why Clift would take the view, effectively, that Portal is the enemy of Gateway. If he is taking the view that no capital spending shoudl occur unless it's for the tunnels, then literally every bit of rolling stock purchased by NJT was in vain, the storm resiliency yard work makes no sense, and why even do track work. The cost of Portal is a drop in the bucket compared with the cost of Gateway, and the speed increase and reliability improvements make the bridge a key project that can stand on its own in any event. I would be very disappointed if a new bridge couldn't at least accommodate 3 tracks.
  by Greg Moore
 
I think this reflects an unfortunate reality of current politics, it's nearly impossible to get funding for large scale infrastructure projects.
The stimulus package was the last big national hurrah in this area.

Heck, here in NYS they're STILL arguing over how to fund the Tappen Zee bridge replacement. But that they've started, even if they're not sure how they'll pay for it.

For the NEC, there's several costly infrastructure projects that are to me no-brainers.
  by JCGUY
 
Roughly one billion dollars, design work and permitting done, so it's "shovel ready", four year project, so it's roughly $250mm per year for four years. Gosh, in a 3 trillion annual federal budget or 12 trillion over the 4 years, this is tiny. It would be nice if the local politicians would horse trade to get this fully funded.
  by bleet
 
JCGUY wrote:I am also wondering how many tracks the potential span would bear. However, the article mentions that the design work is done. Does anyone know what was designed in terms of number of tracks?

I have no idea why Clift would take the view, effectively, that Portal is the enemy of Gateway. If he is taking the view that no capital spending shoudl occur unless it's for the tunnels, then literally every bit of rolling stock purchased by NJT was in vain, the storm resiliency yard work makes no sense, and why even do track work. The cost of Portal is a drop in the bucket compared with the cost of Gateway, and the speed increase and reliability improvements make the bridge a key project that can stand on its own in any event. I would be very disappointed if a new bridge couldn't at least accommodate 3 tracks.
The bridge, which NJT designed, was for 2 tracks. (I'm pretty sure Cruiser said that back in the day when he contributed.)
  by philipmartin
 
This article I'm posting the link to says the proposed Portal fixed bridge would be fifty feet above high water. The Pennsy's lift bridges in the area, Dock, Hack and Bay can all go to 135 feet above the water (I've worked them all.)
That NY Times article that started the thread has some good photographs, the train derailment, and fenders burning at Portal. Transit had a derailment there too, when a wheel came off a car.
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/bane ... e-26937437" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  by 25Hz
 
bleet wrote:
JCGUY wrote:I am also wondering how many tracks the potential span would bear. However, the article mentions that the design work is done. Does anyone know what was designed in terms of number of tracks?

I have no idea why Clift would take the view, effectively, that Portal is the enemy of Gateway. If he is taking the view that no capital spending shoudl occur unless it's for the tunnels, then literally every bit of rolling stock purchased by NJT was in vain, the storm resiliency yard work makes no sense, and why even do track work. The cost of Portal is a drop in the bucket compared with the cost of Gateway, and the speed increase and reliability improvements make the bridge a key project that can stand on its own in any event. I would be very disappointed if a new bridge couldn't at least accommodate 3 tracks.
The bridge, which NJT designed, was for 2 tracks. (I'm pretty sure Cruiser said that back in the day when he contributed.)
As i said before, the ARC portal replacement was one 3 track bridge, and one 2 track bridge.

Image

I would settle for one 3 track bridge for a one to one replacement for portal, and a second 2 track bridge to be built in conjunction with gateway. After all, 2 new tunnels are going to need 2 new tracks.
  by JCGUY
 
I love the look of that design, simply gorgeous. Now, is that a yacht depicted sailing under the bridge? I can just imagine the Sultan of Brunei enjoying a cruise up the Hackensack River in the Kearny/Secaucus area to pass the time between meetings with asset managers on his trips to New York...
  by zerovanity59
 
It looks like a barge. You can see the cargo off to the left of the picture.
  by zerovanity59
 
philipmartin wrote:This article I'm posting the link to says the proposed Portal fixed bridge would be fifty feet above high water. The Pennsy's lift bridges in the area, Dock, Hack and Bay can all go to 135 feet above the water (I've worked them all.)
Yes, the new bridge(s) are to be fixed at 50 feet above high tide. Yes, this will cause a section of the river to not be able to support boats that need 51-135 ft. of air draft.
  by JCGUY
 
Good point, it is a barge. Nice looking barge. In the future, even barges will be handsome.
  • 1
  • 37
  • 38
  • 39
  • 40
  • 41
  • 51