• Second Ruggles CR platform

  • Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.
Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

  by The EGE
 
The existing island platform is pretty skinny - a side platform wouldn't save enough space for 4 tracks. There was a study a while back (I can't find it now) for widening the whole ROW to 4 tracks and it was obscenely expensive. Cut-and-covering the entire Orange Line from before Back Bay to Forest Hills would probably be cheaper.

I believe they are actually planning to repair the platform, although that is not part of the new platform project.
  by MBTA3247
 
The EGE wrote:There was a study a while back (I can't find it now) for widening the whole ROW to 4 tracks and it was obscenely expensive. Cut-and-covering the entire Orange Line from before Back Bay to Forest Hills would probably be cheaper.
I'd expect the opposite, actually. South of Ruggles the Southwest Corridor is bordered by park land on both sides for most of the way, so acquiring and excavating another track's-worth of space could be done fairly cheaply, and with minimal disruption to existing train service. Whereas I assume by cut and covering the Orange Line you mean moving it into a tunnel below its current ROW and expanding the Northeast Corridor into the freed-up space. That would require digging a tunnel below an active ROW while somehow maintaining service.
  by BandA
 
What is the width of a track? Two tracks? How wide should a platform be? How much of a shoulder is needed so that it is safe for the MOW? Drainage? Constant tension catanery poles? I assume a center platform needs to be wider than a side platform, since you can always hug the wall of a side platform, while on an island you could back up and fall onto the other track.

With an island, you can run the train on either track and it doesn't matter. With side platforms you need to announce the train and the passengers would need to wait in the overhead bridge walkway until the track is announced. Announcements can be automated.

So, how much width is needed to add another track? Are we talking siding(s) for the station platforms or a full third track?

Ideally, at Ruggles, I think there should be two side platforms and three tracks with the center one express, mostly for Acelas (or freight). Someone someday is going to stand too close to the edge of the platform and get killed by an express passing through, and the express shouldn't have to slow down until Back Bay.
  by The EGE
 
High-level platforms do not provide a huge speed restriction. The Acela can already go 120mph through Ruggles, and 130mph through Route 128*. There's basically no speed benefits to be had by Amtrak by having a platformless passing track, and having platforms on every track makes things a lot easier for the MBTA.

The current island platform is 22 feet wide. The MBTA is standardizing on 12-foot-wide platforms, usually 800 feet long, for side platforms. The difference - 10 feet - is about 3 feet short of the 13-foot track centers usually used on high-speed sections of the NEC.
  by BostonUrbEx
 
MBTA3247 wrote:That would require digging a tunnel below an active ROW while somehow maintaining service.
I'd say it's the perfect excuse for extending the E Line back to Arborway. In addition, temporarily extend the Silver Line all the way down Washington to Forest Hills, in additional to shuttles. But then you won't need quite as many shuttles due to all the new coverage during the project.
  by Red Wing
 
MBTA3247 wrote:
The EGE wrote:There was a study a while back (I can't find it now) for widening the whole ROW to 4 tracks and it was obscenely expensive. Cut-and-covering the entire Orange Line from before Back Bay to Forest Hills would probably be cheaper.
I'd expect the opposite, actually. South of Ruggles the Southwest Corridor is bordered by park land on both sides for most of the way, so acquiring and excavating another track's-worth of space could be done fairly cheaply, and with minimal disruption to existing train service. Whereas I assume by cut and covering the Orange Line you mean moving it into a tunnel below its current ROW and expanding the Northeast Corridor into the freed-up space. That would require digging a tunnel below an active ROW while somehow maintaining service.
Any land taking from a state park requires two thirds vote by the General Court and of course a signature from the Governor. Once you add lawyers and lobbyists 'm not sure if it would be cheap.
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Here's the project presentation with renderings of what they're going to do: http://www.mbta.com/uploadedfiles/About ... 120919.pdf.

$20M cost, 18 month construction timeframe 2014 to mid-'15, and doesn't look like the existing platform gets messed around with.
  by boblothrope
 
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:Here's the project presentation with renderings of what they're going to do: http://www.mbta.com/uploadedfiles/About ... 120919.pdf.
Something in that document that hasn't been mentioned here:

The pedestrian tunnel under the busway won't cross the tracks to connect the new platform with the existing one. It will connect the two segments of the new platform, which will be interrupted by the abutment for the busway overpass. In other words, the doors won't open on one car in the *middle* of the train.

That's a strange way to increase access to a busy station, but I guess they have no choice. And MBTA CR passengers are already used to strange procedures regarding which doors will open.
  by The EGE
 
The tunnel is 73' long. A diagram in that presentation shows that a car can platform both its doors on opposite sides of the tunnel. Boarding will proceed exactly as normal on an 800' high-level.
  by CSX Conductor
 
When I stated that a platform on track 2 would increase delays, I meant because inbound T trains stopping there would slow down trains behind them. If a T train is stopping at Ruggles, I will have to slow down (from 110mph on a Regional or 120 on an Acela) to 30MPH back at Plains Interlocking and creep all the way into BBY catching the T train's cab signals. Currently if I am following an inbound T train from Attleboro/Stoughton he crosses over at Forest and then I have a clear shot to Boston.
  by Diverging Route
 
CSX Conductor wrote:When I stated that a platform on track 2 would increase delays, I meant because inbound T trains stopping there would slow down trains behind them. If a T train is stopping at Ruggles, I will have to slow down (from 110mph on a Regional or 120 on an Acela) to 30MPH back at Plains Interlocking and creep all the way into BBY catching the T train's cab signals. Currently if I am following an inbound T train from Attleboro/Stoughton he crosses over at Forest and then I have a clear shot to Boston.
I think it's all about flexibility: When the slots permit, inbound MBTAs will be able to stop at Ruggles on 2. But the dispatcher would still have the option of crossing over a train from 2>1>3 as if there's a train behind that would be affected.
  by Arlington
 
What happened to this project for a CR platform on track 2 at Ruggles ?
http://www.mbta.com/about_the_mbta/t_pr ... p?id=25059" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It was supposed to be at Final Design by Oct 2013. Did it happen and I just not notice (or miss a thread here?)
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
Arlington wrote:What happened to this project for a CR platform on track 2 at Ruggles ?
http://www.mbta.com/about_the_mbta/t_pr ... p?id=25059" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It was supposed to be at Final Design by Oct 2013. Did it happen and I just not notice (or miss a thread here?)
The contractor they tabbed for final design said "end of this year" on its webpage that hasn't been updated since Sept. 2013. So I'm guessing since they're still getting paid the project's still a go but the design schedule slip pushes everything out at least 1 or 2 years. No construction bids have been posted yet.
  by SM89
 
It was supposed to be built at the same time as the NU ISEB since they are next to each other and need to be integrated. I wonder if this will have any effect on NU's plans?
  by ohalloranchris
 
Interesting. The new platform would certainly be a great convenience to Ruggles Commuters on "Track 2" trains, but there would surely be a ripple effect on the schedule.