• GLX Impact on NH Route (Lowell Line)

  • 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

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  by BandA
 
are they installing a barrier so that the ballast and the dirt don't mix over time? And what do they do with all the old ballast!
  by MBTA3247
 
No. It wouldn't help, anyway, since you always have more dirt being blown in. I don't know how often they bother to do it, but there are track maintenance machines that scoop out the ballast, clean it, and put it back in place.
  by sery2831
 
I have never seen a ballast cleaner on the property. The other benefit of that machine removes excess ballast for the tie and surfacing jobs. The railroad gets higher over the years.
  by BostonUrbEx
 
sery2831 wrote:The railroad gets higher over the years.
Yep, and that's why a Plate F restriction was placed at Sullivan Sq about five years ago. Can't think of any other examples of recent impacts off-hand, but it is always monitored.
  by Arlington
 
Another (minor) impact: what is the name of the previously disused track that runs from Washington St on the Lowell Line over to (roughly) Sullivan Sq?

It looks like work on restoring that track is proceeding apace: they seem down to the dirt and ready for a first layer of ballast.

Meanwhile, back at Tufts:
- the box/foundation for the future signal mast at Burger Ave has had the ballast scraped away above it.
- new ties have been laid on the outer end of the new inbound track (but why? I guess they need a little extra to allow the existing track to be more curved?)
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
The only segment of the innermost Yard 10 lead along New Washington that's been OOS has been the actual grade crossings. The switch to Boston Paperboard just east of Innerbelt Rd. crossing was still getting its once-in-a-blue-moon deliveries as late as 2016, and Keolis MOW parks track machines west of the Cobble Hill Rd. crossing inside of the yard fence. Those heavily rusted ex-Amtrak baggage or mail cars that were parked for years just outside the fence (and have now since disappeared presumably to be scrapped) marked the break in operable track. There were 3 derelict siding switches in a row to long-defunct customers on the 1st Ave. block between the Cobble Hill and Innerbelt crossings, and I'm guessing those switches' deteriorated condition plus the woeful condition of the crossing surfaces had a lot to do with the OOS break in the middle. If they're replacing track those 3 old switches are likely coming out. The crossings don't even have signage, let alone signals, so in addition to crossing surface replacement active protection is going to be a must before reactivation. Innerbelt is a horrible over-wide speed trap for leadfoot cars and delivery trucks alike; I don't see how anything but full-shebang gates, pavement markings, and advance warning signage is going to suffice if they actually want to use that track again. Flaggers must've hated that crossing with a passion.


Not sure if the tracks next to Sullivan have been slapped OOS lately. Those were in the not too distant past operable out to the Maffa Way overpass. If they're planning to rehab north of the freight wye through Sullivan for storage they've almost certainly got incentive to plow through right to end-of-track next to the Assembly parking garage so they can make renewed use of the runaround switch.
  by GP40MC1118
 
The derelict cars were not scrapped. The Amtrak MHC Boxcar and one of the 40ft B&M
boxcars went south to the Cape. The other B&M boxcar went to Billerica Shop with the
ex-MP caboose and other junkers.

The Yard 10 lead was actually in service up to the T-Pad at Mystic Jct (not the one at Innerbelt Road).
Basically housed the derelict cars and occasionally the Sperry Car (which usually put up on the other
side of Mystic off the Lowell main side). Even BO-1 and DOBO's power made VERY rare appearances up to
Cobblehill to get Bulletin Orders from the Dispatcher's office at Cobblehill (The MBTA building, formerly
the Pastene Warehouse whose siding is still in the pavement)!!

The two crossings are Innerbelt and Cobblehill Road (off New Washington St).

D
  by MBTA3247
 
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:Not sure if the tracks next to Sullivan have been slapped OOS lately.
There are ties chained over the rails towards the south end of the station. Part of the retaining wall has collapsed just north of the station.
  by BostonUrbEx
 
I don't think the Yard 21 leads have been in service ever since that scissor lift was struck by a train while I-93 overnight work was going on. Enough room for 3 engines to make a bob move to/from any track, but no further. Once everyone got a load of how bad the brush and track conditions were, Pan Am decided to wait until GLX monies will pay for rehab instead of lifting even a finger.
  by F-line to Dudley via Park
 
MBTA3247 wrote:
F-line to Dudley via Park wrote:Not sure if the tracks next to Sullivan have been slapped OOS lately.
There are ties chained over the rails towards the south end of the station. Part of the retaining wall has collapsed just north of the station.
When did the wall collapse happen? Sullivan used to be my home station many years ago (I vividly remember the morning of the infamous acid tanker leak on those tracks, and the evacuations in the neighborhood)...but I hardly ever get north of Community College on Orange these days. Was this the section of wall in front of the new Brighton St. lofts, or further up in the Maffa Way-Mystic Ave. triangle? The Maffa overpass was traditionally the dividing line between "these tracks look unbroken...in theory" to the south and "THAR BE DRAGONS" to the north.
  by deathtopumpkins
 
The portion of those tracks up to the platforms at Sullivan was still in use until as recently as maybe a year ago. That's the last time I saw freight cars stashed there.

There are ties across the tracks between the north end of the platforms and the Maffa Way overpass. I'm not aware of any portion of the wall collapsing, at least not that I can see from walking over the overpass and then waiting on the platform each morning. I'll take a closer look tonight (though it'll probably be too dark) or tomorrow morning.
  by deathtopumpkins
 
So I took a look this morning. A teeny tiny portion of the retaining wall has crumbled just beyond the ties across the tracks, themselves just north of the platforms.
  by Arlington
 
Facebook post from MBTA Green Line Extension shows slow mo ride through the Tufts interlocking construction site

from North to South:
0:10 start of retaining wall behind Burget Ave
0:20 crew looking into foundation box for future signal mast in alcove created by retaining wall
0:30 piles-and-boards retaining wall all along the back of Burget Ave
1:50 tufts buildings
2:20 Tufts shops that will be demolished and replaced with a new building (no longer using air-rights @ station)
2:30 College Ave bridge (above) and new ties & 1 rail for new inbound track (below)
2:40 future inbound track sitting on dirt/minimal ballast
3:35 start of first turnout
4:12 empty ties from former outbound track (foreground)
5:00 start of second turnout
5:58 base of installed new signal mast
  by BostonUrbEx
 
Track throwing for Tufts continued this weekend and should be significantly completed with all tracks hooked up to the crossovers. Mostly a matter of signal work, now.
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