• NJT Wishlist for Stimulus / Infrastructure Projects

  • Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.
Discussion related to New Jersey Transit rail and light rail operations.

Moderators: Tadman, nick11a, Kaback9, ACeInTheHole

  by njtmnrrbuff
 
If only could it be easier to construct high level platforms on curves. That is true that Maplewood would probably have to use Ridgewood's approach. I agree that changes happen. If NJT decided to add full length high level platforms at the remaining stations on the Coastline at the time, the railroad would have operated a little better. It would have helped people with physical disabilities. High Bridge Station isn't that easily accessible to Rt. 78. It's no surprise that people who live closer to 78 and west of High Bridge are going to drive to Annandale to get the train during the week. Annandale could use high level platforms even though it's on a curve. From High Bridge to Raritan, it's almost a 25 minute drive. If you live in Annandale and want to drive to Raritan Station for more train service, it's more like 20 minutes.

Come to Montclair where I live. Our five of the six train stations in Montclair low level platforms. NJT should have added high level platforms during the time when the low door Comet Is left. Stations like Montclair Heights and Mountain Avenue Station are on straightaways. Upper Montclair is on a slight curve and the station there is historical landmark. The same thing goes with Watchung Avenue Station. Walnut Street Station is on a sharp curve. Watching those long Comet sets pickup and discharge passengers at the stations in Montclair for a long time at the height of the rush hour doesn't impress people from a business perspective given the fact that passengers have to go up and down a few steps into and out of the train. The stops in Montclair are very close to each other. In fact, on the electrified stretch of the MOBO, with the exception of between Watsessing Ave and NWK Broad Street, the stations are at least a mile apart from each other. It would have helped NJT if they ran MUs on all of the Midtown Directs as well. The old Lackawanna electric lines are suited for MU operations, not locomotive hauled trains that make every single stop. NJT's ALP power and the diesel power accelerate fine but when we are talking trains making every single stop on the schedule on the MOBO and going as far as MSU, then the Arrow IIIs would come in handy. NJT shouldn't be running long trains on the MOBO even during the off peak hours unless if there is a parade in the city. While many people might ride the train from Mtc into the city, even during off peak hours, the trains are often never more than half full during off peak hours. Back to high level platforms on the MOBO-the two Bloomfield stations and Glen Ridge should get them.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
njt/mnrrbuff wrote: Tue Apr 14, 2020 4:56 pm If only could it be easier to construct high level platforms on curves. That is true that Maplewood would probably have to use Ridgewood's approach. I agree that changes happen. If NJT decided to add full length high level platforms at the remaining stations on the Coastline at the time, the railroad would have operated a little better. It would have helped people with physical disabilities. High Bridge Station isn't that easily accessible to Rt. 78. It's no surprise that people who live closer to 78 and west of High Bridge are going to drive to Annandale to get the train during the week. Annandale could use high level platforms even though it's on a curve. From High Bridge to Raritan, it's almost a 25 minute drive. If you live in Annandale and want to drive to Raritan Station for more train service, it's more like 20 minutes.

Come to Montclair where I live. Our five of the six train stations in Montclair low level platforms. NJT should have added high level platforms during the time when the low door Comet Is left. Stations like Montclair Heights and Mountain Avenue Station are on straightaways. Upper Montclair is on a slight curve and the station there is historical landmark. The same thing goes with Watchung Avenue Station. Walnut Street Station is on a sharp curve. Watching those long Comet sets pickup and discharge passengers at the stations in Montclair for a long time at the height of the rush hour doesn't impress people from a business perspective given the fact that passengers have to go up and down a few steps into and out of the train. The stops in Montclair are very close to each other. In fact, on the electrified stretch of the MOBO, with the exception of between Watsessing Ave and NWK Broad Street, the stations are at least a mile apart from each other. It would have helped NJT if they ran MUs on all of the Midtown Directs as well. The old Lackawanna electric lines are suited for MU operations, not locomotive hauled trains that make every single stop. NJT's ALP power and the diesel power accelerate fine but when we are talking trains making every single stop on the schedule on the MOBO and going as far as MSU, then the Arrow IIIs would come in handy. NJT shouldn't be running long trains on the MOBO even during the off peak hours unless if there is a parade in the city. While many people might ride the train from Mtc into the city, even during off peak hours, the trains are often never more than half full during off peak hours. Back to high level platforms on the MOBO-the two Bloomfield stations and Glen Ridge should get them.
Even with High Bridge's poor accessibility by road and facilities (barely parking, the people who park have to climb a hill then stairs), Annandale isn't exactly prime railroad station and hasn't in a long time (well before I was born and probably well before 2x I was born). Access to 31 and 78 are incredibly poor, especially for a stop just off 78. With the Hampton extension, now you have service just off Route 31 that can come with parking AND a high-level platform within 10 minutes of Washington borough. If the Hampton Branch via Changewater still existed, it would be a more viable discussion for a Washington extension, alas the DL&W pulled that idea over 60 years ago. It would also probably spur more development in Hampton and Glen Gardner meaning ridership can go up over the failed extension from 44 years ago. Baby steps. The benefit is Glen Gardner and Hampton both have more room for high-level construction. The only other stop between Raritan and High Bridge that could be high-leveled is Whitehouse and I don't see that happening.

Listen, I went to Montclair State. I love Montclair Heights station. In fact, in the two years I was there, I only used MSU at Little Falls once, I always used Montclair Heights, which is prime for high-level platforms and always had a full-size bicycle on me. Walnut Street and Watchung Avenue can get high-levels. Upper Montclair also sits on a curve. (If it were a weekend, I biked from Montclair State to either Clifton or Grove Street.)

The two Bloomfield stops and Glen Ridge are going to be a pain based on the cut design. This will be easier at Watsessing Avenue than Bloomfield or Glen Ridge and if you want another cheap extension, NLR to Watsessing Avenue is a simple one you can build that would connect downtown Newark. Development is big time up at Watsessing Avenue and it would make perfect sense to extend the station to the end of the ROW now that Hartz Mountain is gone.
  by njtmnrrbuff
 
Mtc State University has grown in size. If you dorm or have many of your classes closer to Normal Ave, the Mtc Heights is the closest station. It's a nice neighborhood station as well. I live in the Upper Montclair side of town-just under a mile from Upper Montclair Station. I am almost four miles from the Clifton Station and sometimes use that station to head to Hoboken and the city. When I use Clifton, I usually am heading in the direction of Ridgewood, Suffern, and Pt. Jervis.

As for a NRL extension across Bloomfield Ave to Watsessing Ave-I am not sure about that although it's not a bad idea. The light rail might not be the most direct route from the immediate area of the Watsessing Ave Station to Downtown Newark. The Grove Street Light Rail Station isn't terribly far from Watsessing Ave NJT Station. I have walked between the two many times and it's during the daytime. I wouldn't do the walk at night for safety reasons. There are many buses that run up and down Bloomfield Ave that bring you faster to the Bloomfield Avenue light rail station to continue your trip to Downtown NWK when traffic is moving ok. When the traffic is bad on Bloomfield Ave between Bloomfield Ave light rail station and the intersection of Bloomfield Ave and Watsessing Ave, then the bus will take a little longer between the two intersections over the light rail from Bloomfield Ave Station to Grove St Station. After Grove St Station, the light rail has to cross Bloomfield Ave before the last few blocks leading to Watsessing Ave Station. Yes, there is a lot of brand new development very close to the Watsessing Ave Station and another redevelopment project closer to the station is going to begin very soon.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
njt/mnrrbuff wrote: Tue Apr 14, 2020 7:34 pm Mtc State University has grown in size. If you dorm or have many of your classes closer to Normal Ave, the Mtc Heights is the closest station. It's a nice neighborhood station as well. I live in the Upper Montclair side of town-just under a mile from Upper Montclair Station. I am almost four miles from the Clifton Station and sometimes use that station to head to Hoboken and the city. When I use Clifton, I usually am heading in the direction of Ridgewood, Suffern, and Pt. Jervis.

As for a NRL extension across Bloomfield Ave to Watsessing Ave-I am not sure about that although it's not a bad idea. The light rail might not be the most direct route from the immediate area of the Watsessing Ave Station to Downtown Newark. The Grove Street Light Rail Station isn't terribly far from Watsessing Ave NJT Station. I have walked between the two many times and it's during the daytime. I wouldn't do the walk at night for safety reasons. There are many buses that run up and down Bloomfield Ave that bring you faster to the Bloomfield Avenue light rail station to continue your trip to Downtown NWK when traffic is moving ok. When the traffic is bad on Bloomfield Ave between Bloomfield Ave light rail station and the intersection of Bloomfield Ave and Watsessing Ave, then the bus will take a little longer between the two intersections over the light rail from Bloomfield Ave Station to Grove St Station. After Grove St Station, the light rail has to cross Bloomfield Ave before the last few blocks leading to Watsessing Ave Station. Yes, there is a lot of brand new development very close to the Watsessing Ave Station and another redevelopment project closer to the station is going to begin very soon.
Reminder that I am only 29, I graduated from MSU in 2015 so my knowledge is up to date. I was in Blanton Hall (middle of the campus), so just biking down the hill to Montclair Heights made more sense. (The biking back is also easier than from Montclair State.) Montclair Heights was rebuilt in 1997 and they chose to go with the mini-high approach, but if they choose, they can go up to full high-level platforms. As for Clifton, if I was going to Hoboken I would either bike to Newark and grab PATH or north to Campbell Hall or Suffern.

The benefit of a Watsessing extension for the light rail would be simple. Trains would sit right there at the Montclair-Boonton Line station, a new elevator would bring people up to the platform, which would be extended southward to make access easier. There is no reason to have to make people go from Watsessing to Grove by foot or bus or to go from Watsessing to a different part of Newark via Newark Broad to just double back on light rail. On weekends, especially, there would be great benefit for a Watsessing Junction service (MBL & NLR and vice versa). Not to mention, the development on the west side of the Watsessing station would be accessible, meaning East Orange residents could use it as well. It's better than anyone who wishes the Orange Branch still existed out to West Orange or service on the old NYGL.
  by njtmnrrbuff
 
The NRL extension from Grove Street to Watsessing Ave would be a short term plan for allowing for more frequent light rail service from the Watsessing Ave area to Downtown NWK. On weekends, MOBO service from Watsessing Ave to NWK Broad is every other hour and you are dropped off along the edge of Downtown Newark and you still have to travel at least a mile to get to either the heart of Downtown NWK or NWK Penn by bus or light rail. Having the light rail end at Watsessing Ave would also enable those people living in the area who want to go to Nutley and parts of Clifton to take the light rail crosstown to Branch Brook Park and then switch to the 74 bus. The light rail could benefit East Orange residents too but the question is where the residents live in East Orange and where they are heading. If they live in the part of East Orange closest to Bloomfield and Glen Ridge, then they could benefit from it when heading to all points on the light rail. If they live in East Orange closer to Main Street and still need to go to Downtown NWK, then they are likely going to take the 21 bus which runs very frequently. There are overlapping bus routes too-73, 71(not all buses go to NWK depending on the day). I wouldn't count on the NWK Light rail being extended from Grove St(Bloomfield) to West Orange. That has been discussed in other forums.

I would love to see not only the weekend service running to Bay Street extended to MSU. I would love to see it run hourly at the least. Unfortunately that will not be possible to happen in the short term. The North River Tunnels need to be rehabilitated and we need a new set of tunnels. In addition, on the MOBO itself, there needs to be second trainset and another crew on that trainset. It would have been great to have at least all center island platforms at NWK Broad St between the tracks so that way, there could be trains meeting each other at the station. Your MOBO line train to Hoboken would layover on one track while your M&E to NYP would pick up all passengers and then depart before the Hoboken train. A few minutes after the Hoboken train departs, another train from Hoboken to MSU would arrive and wait for the passengers boarding at NWK Broad and connecting from the city to MOBO stations. There would be passengers who boarded in Hoboken who are connecting to the train heading to Dover. The same is in reverse for those heading from an M&E Station to Hoboken. A few minutes after the westbound train from HOB-MSU arrives into NWK Broad, the Midtown Direct train heading to Dover comes in and does its station work and leaves before the westbound train to MOBO stations. The current platform at NWK Broad St isn't really meant to have shuttle trains connecting to main line trains.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
njt/mnrrbuff wrote: Tue Apr 14, 2020 10:34 pm The NRL extension from Grove Street to Watsessing Ave would be a short term plan for allowing for more frequent light rail service from the Watsessing Ave area to Downtown NWK. On weekends, MOBO service from Watsessing Ave to NWK Broad is every other hour and you are dropped off along the edge of Downtown Newark and you still have to travel at least a mile to get to either the heart of Downtown NWK or NWK Penn by bus or light rail. Having the light rail end at Watsessing Ave would also enable those people living in the area who want to go to Nutley and parts of Clifton to take the light rail crosstown to Branch Brook Park and then switch to the 74 bus. The light rail could benefit East Orange residents too but the question is where the residents live in East Orange and where they are heading. If they live in the part of East Orange closest to Bloomfield and Glen Ridge, then they could benefit from it when heading to all points on the light rail. If they live in East Orange closer to Main Street and still need to go to Downtown NWK, then they are likely going to take the 21 bus which runs very frequently. There are overlapping bus routes too-73, 71(not all buses go to NWK depending on the day). I wouldn't count on the NWK Light rail being extended from Grove St(Bloomfield) to West Orange. That has been discussed in other forums.

I would love to see not only the weekend service running to Bay Street extended to MSU. I would love to see it run hourly at the least. Unfortunately that will not be possible to happen in the short term. The North River Tunnels need to be rehabilitated and we need a new set of tunnels. In addition, on the MOBO itself, there needs to be second trainset and another crew on that trainset. It would have been great to have at least all center island platforms at NWK Broad St between the tracks so that way, there could be trains meeting each other at the station. Your MOBO line train to Hoboken would layover on one track while your M&E to NYP would pick up all passengers and then depart before the Hoboken train. A few minutes after the Hoboken train departs, another train from Hoboken to MSU would arrive and wait for the passengers boarding at NWK Broad and connecting from the city to MOBO stations. There would be passengers who boarded in Hoboken who are connecting to the train heading to Dover. The same is in reverse for those heading from an M&E Station to Hoboken. A few minutes after the westbound train from HOB-MSU arrives into NWK Broad, the Midtown Direct train heading to Dover comes in and does its station work and leaves before the westbound train to MOBO stations. The current platform at NWK Broad St isn't really meant to have shuttle trains connecting to main line trains.
I wasn't saying West Orange should happen, I was purely saying that the Watsessing extension would be a lot more logical of a western extension than a West Orange extension or an alignment via the old NYGL. Much of the Orange Branch has been encroached west of the Watsessing Junction area. There is no way in hell that's ever happening unless it street runs. But the concept of the Watsessing extension is cheap and meets all checkmarks. They would inconvenience drivers on Bloomfield Avenue a bit with a grade crossing, but it isn't that big an issue.

As for MOBO to Montclair State, forget just the NRT work that needs to be done and the Penn Station expanded capacity. Asking any fellow residents of Montclair to accept it is a bigger problem. I'm sure the communities west of Montclair State (the WORMs) would love active service on weekends, but in no way in hell would this happen. Residents of Montclair (not necessarily yourself) are going to protest like crazy. I wish they would too for the sake of college students getting to and from school on weekends after being at home. However, hourly service does need to happen, one way or another. Montclair State might have to pony up the funds for it though.
  by njtmnrrbuff
 
I hate to say this but many of the people in the communities west of MSU station find the train to be very inconvenient. Even the express trains that run east(railroad) of MSU don't save a whole lot of time over taking a local train. They make a few stops between MSU and NWK Broad St like Watchung Ave and Bay Street. If you live in Little Falls, Wayne, Lincoln Park, and Boonton and other towns along the 46 corridor in Northern Morris County, the bus is the most convenient way to get into Midtown Manhattan. Lakeland runs a great service to towns like Parsippany, Boonton, and even Dover. Even if there are minimal to moderate traffic, the bus is still convenient when traveling from the towns served by the Montclair-Boonton Line west of MSU to NYP. In Wayne, there is the Willowbrook Mall Park N Ride Lot which not only sees several rush hour buses. During the off peak hours and on weekends, buses running to NYC serve Willowbrook Mall Park N Ride Lot two to three times each way. In little or no traffic, the trip takes about 30 minutes and even if there was an extra 15 minutes of the trip because of traffic, the bus will outpace the train. The train service west of Montclair is helpful for those people who work in Newark or even Hoboken. Many people from Montclair would love more weekend rail options. They don't just want the train to end at Bay Street Station. That cuts off a lot of Montclair, particularly the Upper Montclair side of town. It would cut off a tad of Little Falls too, given that MSU Station is located in the Twp of Little Falls.

Back to the Watsessing Ave extension of the Newark Light Rail, it would either have to cross Bloomfield Ave at grade or there would have to be an underpass. The grade crossing option would inconvenience drivers. I could imagine what that would be like during rush hour affecting all of that traffic going up and down Bloomfield Avenue. Yes, much of the Orange Line west of Watsessing is encroached. Much of it is probably occupied by buildings.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
More service would help, but yes, it's the reason why service to Washington borough would never happen. Washington borough to New York would take 2.5 hours you'd think. Same applies to the Andover service. Unfortunately, the slow service between Denville and Montclair State adds a lot of time. If we still had the old alignment through Garrett Mountain, we'd be in better shape. Alas.

Bloomfield Avenue drivers might have to deal with it. You'd have to elevate the entire line to Watsessing Avenue most likely if you don't want the undesired route. I don't think there's enough room between Watsessing Junction and Grove Street to have an overpass only for Bloomfield Avenue.
  by njtmnrrbuff
 
Passenger rail service to Washington in Warren County is not going to happen. It's too long of a route and I don't think the Chesapeake & Delaware will support that. It's too long of a ride from Hackettstown to begin with. In fact, for trains to run to Andover and across the Delaware River, express service is a must on the M&E. I would not route any of the trains to Andover over to MOBO, even if they are express trains that skip many stops from NWK Broad to MSU. It's been discussed many times by other forum members to have NJT trains running to Washington in Warren County-this is definately a pipe dream.

If a very short extension were to happen from Grove St Station to Watsessing, leaving Grove Street, the existing two tracks that the light rail uses would have to veer a left before accessing the old Erie Orange Branch. There may be enough space to build an overpass over Bloomfield Ave. I have seen cars park right along the old Orange Branch where it crosses Bloomfield Ave and where they are parked isn't really official parking property.
  by Roadgeek Adam
 
Pardon I left civil engineering 10 years ago, but there are works that can be done in terms of making switches to get from the tracks and the building of a second platform at Grove Street for an extension. Would take some work, but it is doable. The extension of the second track won't be so easy. It would take engineering work I don't have right now.