• Commuter Rail to Rhode Island 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 apodino
Robert Paniagua wrote:I am also picturing in my mind bilevel cars with an electric locomotive - I like NJTs ALP44s or 46s - instead of an HHP8 ARMADILLO (my term for them) maybe even some striped in blue and purple for the joint service.

Well, just for reference the Kawasaki's Bilevel units are forbidden west of PVD citing lower bridges and the overhead catenary that Amtrak uses, so the K's are out. Trains past PVD on south would have to be all flat single's.

I am confused here. Aren't the Kawasaki's the same height as either an F40 or an AEM-7? If so, how would Kawasaki's be banned on height grounds from going past PVD?

  by mental757
paulrail wrote:Is the MBTA going to use ONLY the P&W's third track to any stops (Providence, Greenwich, Warwick (TF Green), Wickford, Kingston) and not run on the NEC from Boston Swith south to (eventually, Kingston)?

How far south does the third track currently go;......Wickford?


to the best of my knowledge - the P&W line will be used as the siding to the platforms at the Warwick/Airport station. They will install switches north and south of this station to allow AMTRAK and P&W to pass through when needed.

The P&W line runs from north of Providence to Wickford and then branches off to the Quonset Industrial park (aka the old navy base).

In addition to the study being conducted for restoration of Woonsocket rail service, P&W was in an article stating that they are exploring other business options includeing passenger service...


RP: Thanks for that info-because of that clearance problem that takes care of any bilevel service W of PVD. I recall that at NRHS National we sometimes receive supplier information-I got a very interesting package from Kawasaki showing their railcars-with detailed info on their bilevel cars built for MBTA,MARC/VRE,LIRR and a prototype car for new starts elsewhere. I wondered back 10 years or so ago if the LIRR could test the MBTA or the MARC/VRE bilevel. I remember there were measurement problems of some type and they were a full foot taller than the LIRRs C3 cars. That was all the difference necessary to allow PSNY service. A interesting comparison could be NJTs new bilevels-which are even shorter to allow clearance in the Hudson River tunnels. Finding out where the RI clearance problems are height-wise and maybe measuring them against the NJT bilevel as an example may answer the clearance question. Thoughts and observations from MACTRAXX

  by octr202
I know we've all debated the subject of Kawasaki clearances west of Providence Station. I don't think we ever determined whether there is a specific problem immediately after the station (and before Warwick), or whether they were just simply never tested for clearance past the station, since there hasn't bee a reason for them to venture out that way.

I'd find it hard to believe that RI DOT would spend money on the Kawasakis only to have all the trains to RI run with the older equipment...

  by Cotuit
The new frieght tracks southwest of Providence are built in a depression below the level of the Amtrak lines, I beleive specifically to allow for taller frieght cars that haven't been able to reach Boston in the past. I don't know if this will allow for bi-level commuter rail cars or not.

  by l008com
Meanwhile, the state of new hampshire still won't pay for the MBTA to run trains from lowell up 5 miles over the border to nashua . . .


  by paulrail
The new (depressed) P&W roadbed from Pawtucket (Boston Switch) to Wickford was built to accommodate autorack car carriers [maybe double stack well cars too;...I don't know] These auto carriers are actually higher than a Kawasaki bi-level commuter coach and thus, the "T" will have no problem if they use this third track for their runs to Wickford. :wink:

It seems to me this subject was discussed earlier this year. I thought someone said that the Kawasikis could be used on the NEC;....there was enough clearance. Does anyone remember the thread about this and when it took place?


  by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050
how tall is a K-car? 17 ft tall?

  by octr202
MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 wrote:how tall is a K-car? 17 ft tall?
15'6" per Kawasaki.

  by Fred Rabin
No one has considered the question of whether bi-hourly service to T F Green would be adequate, particularly in view of late flight arrivals. Unless you can schedule trains at no greater than 30-minute intervals (as in Philadelphia) I think people in Providence, Attleboro, Mansfield, etc., will opt to drive to the airport.

  by mental757
true - but people abroad can plan thier trips around the schedules - specifically those who want to visit or even stay in the BOS area, but use TF Green.

  by paulrail
Driving to T.F. Green?.......They might think twice with gas $3.07 per gallon and rising! :wink:


  by trainhq
Not to mentoin that parking there ain't cheap either! I think people will use it; I certainly wish it had been there when I lived in Stoughton and used to fly out of there. I can remember $100 parking bills there!

  by mental757
Long term let E (Economy at PVD is 11 per day, 56 per week (the garages are more - the 'off-site' lots are less). BOS is higher...

  by mental757
DOT gets $3.5M to expand commuter rail in R.I.
PROVIDENCE -- The state Department of Transportation will receive $3.5 million to buy five rail coaches as part of plans to expand commuter rail services in Rhode Island, federal officials announced today.

The money will go to the South County Commuter Rail project, which will extend Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's services to communities south of Providence.

Two new commuter rail stations -- one near T.F. Green Airport in Warwick and one in North Kingstown -- are being planned.

Transportation officials said they expect the $225-million project to connect Boston and South County communities by mid-2009, when the station at T.F. Green is expected to open.

-- Associated Press

"This funding will improve the quality of life for many and provide an alternative to growing congestion in South County," U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., said in a written statement.

The money comes from a Federal Transit Administration program that assists transit projects in areas where congestion needs to be reduced and mobility improved.

-- Associated Press

Posted by Steve Peoples
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