• Newtown line leased to Montco for recreational trail

  • Discussion relating to Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (Philadelphia Metro Area). Official web site can be found here: www.septa.com. Also including discussion related to the PATCO Speedline rapid transit operated by Delaware River Port Authority. Official web site can be found here: http://www.ridepatco.org/.
Discussion relating to Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (Philadelphia Metro Area). Official web site can be found here: www.septa.com. Also including discussion related to the PATCO Speedline rapid transit operated by Delaware River Port Authority. Official web site can be found here: http://www.ridepatco.org/.

Moderator: AlexC

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  by scotty269
 
Pacobell73 wrote:
limejuice wrote:Alright! Let's spread hearsay! Advancing stereotypes about an entire group of people never has any bad consequences, right? But hey, as long as it has an infinitesimal effect on our agenda, right? Just out of curiosity - anyone ever met someone from Bryn Athyn? Is there any hard evidence of the community as a whole actively opposing restoration of the branch? Or is the general hatred of the community only based on the Pennypack Trust's past opposition to electric train service?
Of course I am making a generalization. No hatred involved. This speaks more to the politics of the area than branding every resident. However, it can be argued that --- SEPTA aside --- Bryn Athyn has always put their agenda front and center instead in partaking in something that is for the greater good of the region. By the town pushing their well endowed people and politics around, they are hurting every other town who has pushed hard for the last 25+ years to restore rail service. Why should one town be allowed over hurt Newtown, Holland, Churchville, Southampton, etc? No one said the train had to stop in Bryn Athyn.
Nobody said it has to stop there, but it does have to run through it.
  by Pacobell73
 
scotty269 wrote:
pacobell73 wrote:Why should one town be allowed over hurt Newtown, Holland, Churchville, Southampton, etc? No one said the train had to stop in Bryn Athyn.
Nobody said it has to stop there, but it does have to run through it.
Unfortunately, very true. One of the arguments Bryn Athyn politico made over the years was that having the station reopened would bring "less than desirable" clientele from Philly (I believe that was what a newspaper article from the late 90s wrote - something of that derogatory nature) into their neighborhood. So the argument was made that the train will simply bypass Mont. Co altogether, which is fine because the R3 is right there anyway for those who chose to commute by train.

Then the Pitcairns got more vocal and brought up the electrification issue and unsightly wires and that has made its way into Newtown branch folklore. :(
Last edited by Pacobell73 on Fri May 08, 2009 10:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
  by jfrey40535
 
One of the arguments Bryn Athyn politico made over the years was that having the station reopened would bring "less than desirable" clientele from P
I love that argument, reminds me of the anti-Woodhaven crowd. Those people had signs on their lawn about "not bringing Philadelphia's traffic" to their backyards, yet its the suburbanites who are cramming I-95 everyday to get into the city. They just want their cake and be able to eat it too while passing the blame on urbanites who don't use highways.
  by Pacobell73
 
jfrey40535 wrote:
One of the arguments Bryn Athyn politico made over the years was that having the station reopened would bring "less than desirable" clientele from Philly...
I love that argument;reminds me of the anti-Woodhaven crowd. Those people had signs on their lawn about "not bringing Philadelphia's traffic" to their backyards, yet its the suburbanites who are cramming I-95 everyday to get into the city. They just want their cake and be able to eat it too while passing the blame on urbanites who don't use highways.
Exactly. They cannot see the forest becasuse the woods are in their way...

Thought this was an interesting article from 2007 (take note of the comments after scrolling down):
http://www.topix.com/city/quakertown-pa ... -rail-plan
  by scotty269
 
Interesting note:

I drove up to Lorimer Park today and while the rail has been torn up and taken away, the NB signal is still standing.
  by R3 Passenger
 
Pacobell73 wrote:Then the Pitcairns got more vocal and brought up the electrification issue and unsightly wires and that has made its way into Newtown branch folklore. :(
Bah! There's no need for wires for electric transportation in the 21st century anymore. Found a new interesting solution from Bombardier. They're installing this system in Berlin right now. When I saw it, I thought, "Why not Newtown?"

http://www.bombardier.com/en/transporta ... 0d800486ab
Last edited by R3 Passenger on Mon May 11, 2009 12:11 pm, edited 4 times in total.
  by Pacobell73
 
scotty269 wrote:Interesting note: I drove up to Lorimer Park today and while the rail has been torn up and taken away, the NB signal is still standing.
Yep, here are the photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/tags/newtown/
R3 Passenger wrote:Bah! There's no need for wires for electric transportation in the 21st century anymore. Found a new interesting solution from http://www.bombardier.com/en/transporta ... 0d800486abBombardier. They're installing this system in Berlin right now. When I saw it, I thought, "Why not Newtown?"
R3 Passenger, this would be perfect, agreed. Europe is at the forefront of railway technology. Ah, but see, the problem is that European governments embrace their railway networks as viable and important. I would be thrilled seeing the RiverLINE diesels on the Newtown line. Unfortunately, all we will see now are bicycles.

The day the US feds embrace our railways, then we might have a chance. The fact that President Obama has put high-speed rail on the "fast track" is promising, considering he is the first Prez to bring this to the table since the inception of Amtrak.
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/stor ... =101073906

This is the important part: "political realities most likely will mean the $8 billion will be divided among several train corridors, diluting the impact somewhat. But there may be more good news for fast-train backers: Obama is expected to seek an additional $1 billion for high-speed rail in his outline for the 2010 budget."
Last edited by Pacobell73 on Wed May 20, 2009 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by jfrey40535
 
Why is it that this and any other trail went in virtually overnight, with no MIS/EIS studies (after all, trails have a impact too!!), but getting train service back requires several consulting firms, studies, PACS, debates, more studies and consultants, and finally nothing, but if you're lucky to get something built, it takes 30 years to do it? Kind of [email protected] ackwards isn't it?

As a famous Vulcan once said, "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few...". He obviously never came to Pennsylvania.
  by Pacobell73
 
Because there is more money to be made from ripping up the track and planting a trail. SEPTA still has exposure, but less responsibility because the infrastructure is gone. Plus, it is no secret that the pro-trail politicians and folk in Mont. Co. are more politically connected.

For whatever reason, the overall impression is that trains bring 'riffraff' and trails do not. While this may be true in some cases (the RiverLINE is still overcoming its reputation of connecting two very depressed urban cities), but the Newtown line is pretty much a suburban route all the way.
  by jb9152
 
jfrey40535 wrote:Why is it that this and any other trail went in virtually overnight, with no MIS/EIS studies (after all, trails have a impact too!!), but getting train service back requires several consulting firms, studies, PACS, debates, more studies and consultants, and finally nothing, but if you're lucky to get something built, it takes 30 years to do it? Kind of [email protected] ackwards isn't it?
Actually, no. Unless the Feds are paying for it, no MIS/EIS required. If you want Federal funding for your project (and SEPTA would want that, believe me), then an MIS/EIS would be required, most likely.
  by Clearfield
 
Pacobell73 wrote:The day the US feds embrace our railways, then we might have a chance.
The highway lobby is very well funded by for-profit corporations.

The railroad lobby is not.

Where do YOU think the real juice is?
  by jfrey40535
 
Unfortunately the whole process is stacked against fixed rail passenger transit, but you would think there would be a lobby for building rail lines since there is plenty of money to be made there now with all of the consultants, computer systems and construction required in (re)building lines. So why are for-profit organizations so uninterested?
  by walnut
 
jfrey40535 wrote:Why is it that this and any other trail went in virtually overnight, with no MIS/EIS studies (after all, trails have a impact too!!), but getting train service back requires several consulting firms, studies, PACS, debates, more studies and consultants, and finally nothing, but if you're lucky to get something built, it takes 30 years to do it? Kind of [email protected] ackwards isn't it?
If you use federal funds, you follow federal rules. If SEPTA used non-federal money, there would be little need for all the studies.

However, the problem with Newtown is not red tape. It is lack of will.
  by jfrey40535
 
Does anyone know anything about tracks being removed south of Shady Lane/North of Rhawn Street? I was told that was the case by someone last week. If that's the case, that would sound like a informal permenant abandonment by SEPTA for that portion of the line as there was no pressing reason to remove the tracks for any reason, other than to waste more money.
  by Pacobell73
 
That happened nearly a decade ago. Here's the view of the culvert heading west:
http://maps.live.com/default.aspx?v=2&F ... &encType=1That was the first major step SEPTA took at implementing their neglect policy. Other incidents, like remival of the diamond at Bethayres, and paving over all the crossings, was minor compared to this one. I think Mont. Co. wanted to dig the culvert, and SEPTA basically let them do it. I believe the county has to kick in some $$$ to construct a bridge should service ever resume. But with the rails gone now, who knows?
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