• Pittsfield/Springfield/Boston East-West Passenger Rail Discussion

  • 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 daybeers
 
jbvb wrote: Mon Nov 25, 2019 8:49 pm "While we're at it, why can't I ride a train to Manchester, Concord, or Lebanon, NH from Boston?"

There are a fair number of people (many spoke at the Plaistow Station/Layover hearings) who are afraid to ride a train (or, for that matter, a bus) lest they meet a member of a group they're afraid of. It would appear they are more common in NH than MA, perhaps less so in ME and RI. I have some hope that, as time passes, this PoV will evaporate away, but it's done plenty of damage and will do more in the next decade.
What is this referring to? Political affiliation? Sexual orientation?
  by Rockingham Racer
 
They say millenials, in general, prefer privacy. Sitting down at a dining car table is not of their "things". So they say. Couldn't prove it by me. I wonder how they do sitting so close to someone at 38,000 feet.
  by RenegadeMonster
 
Yeah,

I noticed it's mostly Millennials who choose to stand on the commuter rail over taking that middle seat or a two seater with a stranger.

I have also situations where I have asked to sit in the middle seat and gotten groans / sighs and the reluctantly let me in. In once case I can remember a girl choosing to stand after I asked to set in the middle seat.

I have her the seat back and chose to sand my self. Only for someone to ask to sit in the middle seat at the next stop and she ended up standing again...

Most Millennials are not into small talk, they like their personal space.
  by jbvb
 
All the Plaistow hearing attendees who said they wouldn't ride trains because they didn't want to sit next to random people, and those who said train service would bring people who they'd left Massachusetts to get away from were at least 55.
  by TomNelligan
 
So should we assume they won't fly either? It must be tough to live with such a sheltered, fearful attitude. I'm well over 55 and somehow I'm not terrified by my neighbors when I ride MBTA or Amtrak trains. Guess I must be living dangerously in my old age.
  by CRail
 
And I’m a millennial proponent of rail service, go figure.
  by Type7trolley
 
Speaking from experience, millenials are much stronger proponents of public transportation than those in the generations before them who grew up when car culture was at its zenith. It certainly isn't New Hampshire's thriving millenial demographic that has kept rail out for decades, but the toxic attitudes of those before them. Their desire for attractive transit options could be what finally changes this however, if the state has any hope of remaining (or becoming) an attractive place to live or work for people under 30.

As an aside, it isn't millenials' supposed anti-social tendencies that are responsible for the elimination of dining services on long distance Amtrak routes as much as draconian cost cutting measures implemented by folks with anti-rail mindsets similar to those mentioned above who are the ones currently running the show. That is a scapegoat. One thing millenials definitely do not prefer is airline style pre-frozen meals.
  by Disney Guy
 
(copied from another forum)
This is an acid test to get a better idea of the demography of suitable users of this rail service.
Offer a bonus to Worcester area commuters who buy a weekly or monthly pass. Once a week the user may use his pass for an after hours ride home (after rail service has ended) using Uber or similar service. It would be paid for out of T funding.
For this experiment we will consider users who tended to need more than one such bonus ride as not suitable for use of the transit service; alas we will have to consider them as better suited for driving cars in. After a trial period we would take notice of how many more passengers were attracted to the rail service by observing the increase in pass sales. We could then extrapolate the results to better determine demand for a Boston to Springfield service. Also,if this bonus attracts lots of riders we might transfer the funding to the unemployment compensation system. to give employers an incentive to minimize the chances of commuters invoking the benefit.
  by Lentinula
 
Type7trolley wrote: Thu Nov 28, 2019 2:19 pm Speaking from experience, millenials are much stronger proponents of public transportation than those in the generations before them who grew up when car culture was at its zenith. It certainly isn't New Hampshire's thriving millenial demographic that has kept rail out for decades, but the toxic attitudes of those before them. Their desire for attractive transit options could be what finally changes this however, if the state has any hope of remaining (or becoming) an attractive place to live or work for people under 30.
I know when I have to stand despite open seats its usually older ladies taking up two or three seats with their bags and glaring at me if I ask them to remove them.

Most recently it was a lady with a very small dog on a blanket who apparently needed two seats on a NE regional -_-

If I have to sit in a middle seat I look for older men, they seem to be less upset about my middle seat taking as long as I strike up conversation.

Gen X age "professional" types of both sexes seem the least welcome to seat sharing on the Metro North overall. The fancier the less welcoming.

I'm a 6'2 Millenial guy who's not exactly lean though so maybe i'm imposing.
  by daybeers
 
There are a few events coming up:
-Advisory Committee Meeting: Thursday, February 6, 2020, 1-3 PM, Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel, Ballroom North, Third Floor, One Monarch Place, Springfield, MA 01144
-Public Meeting: Wednesday, February 12, 2020, 6-8 PM, UMass Center at Springfield, Classroom 014, Tower Square, 1500 Main Street, Springfield, MA 01103
-Advisory Committee Meeting: Monday, February 24, 2020, 1-3 PM, same hotel but in the Mahogany Room, Second Floor

Here are a few details about the public meeting that was sent in an email:
Please join MassDOT at the second public meeting on the East-West Passenger Rail Study. The study is examining the costs, benefits, and investments necessary to implement a range of passenger rail service alternatives from Boston to Springfield and Pittsfield, up to and including high speed rail. The goal of the meeting is to:
-Inform attendees about the study’s analysis of six preliminary alternatives for improving connectivity and mobility in the East-West Corridor
-Gather feedback from attendees about the six preliminary alternatives and what they would like to see in the three final rail service alternatives that will be analyzed further

The meeting will begin with a presentation at 6:00 PM, following by time for Questions + Answers.

*Parking: If you would like to park in the Tower Square garage, parking will be validated at $5 per car. Meeting attendees can park on all levels but are encouraged to park on Level A.

Please visit the website to learn more: www.mass.gov/east-west-passenger-rail-study.

For those who cannot attend the public meeting, all meeting materials will be posted online and feedback will be accepted via email. For study questions or comments, please email MassDOT Project Manager Makaela Niles at [email protected].
Are the Advisory Committee meetings open to the public? Either way I'll be going to the public meeting and if open, I'll try to get to the committee meetings.
  by daybeers
 
I went to the Advisory Committee Meeting on February 6th but am going to the public meeting later today so I will wait to discuss until after that. In the meantime, has anyone checked out a third-party Alternative 7 proposal? I skimmed through their website; looks like a lot of tunneling (70 miles) claiming top speeds of 160 and averaging 90 with no cost estimates.
  by Rockingham Racer
 
Don't think that will happen. Don't think that would happen even in Europe where there's much more political will to tackle large projects such as this proposed one.
  by BandA
 
Just read the "alternative 7" website. Some thought-provoking stuff but some weird stuff, such as building "maintenance/access" facilities at I-84/20 in Sturbridge and at 128/I-90 in Weston that "could be converted to a regular passenger station[s] in the future." Why would you build a station in Palmer but defer building one in much busier Sturbridge, and same question about 495 vs. 128 (although to answer myself, 128 would be so busy that it would worsen congestion of the local network that couldn't possibly handle the volume), and why would you replicate all the stations inside Boston, rather than building only a couple of "super" stations & upgrading the local network to act as a feeder.

I doubt the supposed "synergy" with N-S raillink. Politically, "hey you get your north-south, we get ourz east-west" probably works. Not sold on building harbor sea barriers even if tailings are free, but interesting.
  by shizzy617
 
The idea to expand westward makes a lot of sense. You not only limit road congestion, but you also give Springfield more revenue from more rail traffic and passengers coming for work and play. My idea of a extension would be express service starting from South Station-Framingham-Worcester-Chicopee-Holyoke-Springfield
  by BenH
 
For some reason MassDOT has yet to post online a copy of the presentation deck that was used at the last Advisory Committee meeting on 2/6/2020 and the Public Meeting on 2/12/2020. If you are looking for this presentation you can find it on this link —

East-West Rail Study Advisory Committee presentation (PDF)
https://pvraildotorg.files.wordpress.co ... _final.pdf
63 pages | MassDOT | February 6, 2020

A video recording of the Advisory Committee meeting can be found on this page —
https://trainsinthevalley.org/east-west ... ail-study/