• Grand Junction Branch (The North/South Side Connection)

  • 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 BandA
 
But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.
  by bostontrainguy
 
BandA wrote:But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.
Yeah, when the Grand Junction is upgraded to 40 mph (one of the options being considered - can hear the NIMBYs now!), and IF a SE leg of a wye is built during this project, the Downeaster could run to South Station saving Amtrak money and offering much better connections through Boston. It's really a once in a lifetime opportunity.
  by GP40MC1118
 
Still requires a backup move at North Station. No way to directly connect the Lowell mainline to the GJ connection at Swift.
Only way would be for them run via Reading.
  by Rockingham Racer
 
Perhaps running a few DEs via Reading isn't a bad idea. The line certainly isn't saturated. It might be worth investigating running these few trains over to the Worcester line and terminate them in Springfield. Passengers destined for Boston on the trains could change to the T in Malden. It also opens up a better market for people in Reading, Wakefield, Melrose, Malden and their neighboring towns east of them.
  by bostontrainguy
 
GP40MC1118 wrote:Still requires a backup move at North Station. No way to directly connect the Lowell mainline to the GJ connection at Swift.
Only way would be for them run via Reading.
That connection (Lowell - Grand Junction) is being built right now with the GLX.
  by BandA
 
bostontrainguy wrote:
BandA wrote:But nobody is considering the need to connect the Grand Junction towards the south-east. Presently all north-south equipment moves (which is all they are using it for now) require at least one backup move.
Yeah, when the Grand Junction is upgraded to 40 mph (one of the options being considered - can hear the NIMBYs now!), and IF a SE leg of a wye is built during this project, the Downeaster could run to South Station saving Amtrak money and offering much better connections through Boston. It's really a once in a lifetime opportunity.
This is a complete clean-room replacement of all the transportation infrastructure in the interchange! All you need right now is to plan for a balloon track in the basement of future parking garage & some ventilation fans. (Maybe a little more complicated but not much). Actually they also need to plan for increased highway lanes, haven't seen the drawings but I bet they aren't!!!

As for reverse-moves required at BOS & BON, perhaps just bypass one or both of those stations and stop at BBY, Kendall, where they cross the GLX, Orange & Silver Lines.
  by BandA
 
What I am proposing, and so far I seem to be alone in this, is a balloon or loop track somewhere where Beacon Park used to be. I suppose some local trains might want to stop at West Station, wherever that will be, so I guess this loop would have to be to the west of West Station. I haven't seen the state's proposed layout, but somehow trains have to cross over or under the ground-level Mass Pike alignment. Trains obviously will have to slow down for a sharp curve.

Alternatively, you could build a curve/loop in the middle of the Charles River, with a diamond on the Boston side. That would be the best you could do if you need to add the loop after the Brighton interchange is designed.
  by bostontrainguy
 
ceo wrote:Go look at Google Maps (here) and tell me how you're going to build an eastbound connection from the Grand Junction to the B&A mainline.
As planned the Mass Pike viaduct is going to be removed and the roadway lowered to ground level. Then the Grand Junction is going to cross over the Pike on a new bridge. If the plan instead lowers the Mass Pike one level below ground level the Grand Junction could cross over it on a NE wye bridge under the Comm Ave bridge. It would join the B&A main just north of Montford Street. There would still be a NW wye bridge as planned. It is possible.
  by bostontrainguy
 
BandA wrote:What I am proposing, and so far I seem to be alone in this, is a balloon or loop track somewhere where Beacon Park used to be. I suppose some local trains might want to stop at West Station, wherever that will be, so I guess this loop would have to be to the west of West Station. I haven't seen the state's proposed layout, but somehow trains have to cross over or under the ground-level Mass Pike alignment. Trains obviously will have to slow down for a sharp curve.

Alternatively, you could build a curve/loop in the middle of the Charles River, with a diamond on the Boston side. That would be the best you could do if you need to add the loop after the Brighton interchange is designed.
There actually is (was) a loop around the old CSX engine house but that will soon be history or already is. Actually the Downeastern could run "Backwards" to West Station and then forward over the Grand Junction to Maine very easily since it is bidirectional.
  by BandA
 
I don't think the Downeaster would want to stop at West Station since it just stopped at BBY. West Station should be for MBTA locals.
  by CRail
 
GP40MC1118 wrote:There is no direct connection being built from the Lowell mainline to the Grand Jct as part of GLX or not.
Perhaps not direct per se but it will certainly be possible without a reverse move when yard 10 is finished for access to BS&G post yard 8.
  by GP40MC1118
 
Right...The Yard 9/10 lead being rebuilt for Pan Am.

Last I knew, there was no provisions for an interlocking to connect this track to the New Hampshire Route mainline
No.1 Track (which is ridiculous even if it was just for PAR). There are also no provisions to install proper crossing
protection at Innerbelt Road and Cobblehill Road. I can't wait for DOBO or the other others negotiating this hornets
nest. And this track would no doubt have to be brought up to passenger train standards and that includes the 4th
Iron from FX to Swift. Good luck on that.

D
  by CRail
 
Well they're already talking about sending through trains between Swift and FX unrelated to any of this. I agree with both that I don't think there will be an interlocking at (let's call it) Mystic and that such is asinine. That track has been rebuilt down to the sub-grade (as you know) and I doubt would be much of a further investment to make passenger worthy. I'd be really surprised if crossing protection wasn't put in eventually, though. Innerbelt Rd. is much to wide to stop and protect as an SOP!

I also agree with a point made above that 1.) since the area is being blown up and started over anyways it's certainly possible to make the Grand Junction hook a left and head back into down and that 2.) this is the time to do it, as the opportunity will probably not present itself again while anyone reading this is alive. I doub't they'll do it, but they absolutely should!
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