Discussion related to commuter rail and rapid transit operations in the Chicago area including the South Shore Line, Metra Rail, and Chicago Transit Authority.

Moderators: JamesT4, metraRI

  by Metra210
 
I am planning on making another montage video, this one focusing entirely on inbound UP West Line Metra trains tomorrow, and just like a video I made last Sunday involving the outbound trips, I want to film the trains from different locations. Last Sunday, I filmed UP-W Train #509 from the island platform of the Kedzie station, which I live by. This station is not served by any trains on weekends, and after 7 p.m. on weekdays. While filming 509, I noticed the engineer and the conductors on board looking at me, each bearing a facial expression representing shock and surprise.

I have wanted to film Metra trains at similar stations, such as Highlands, Congress Park, and Hanson Park, but what went through my mind as I saw the faces on the crew of UP-W 509 has made me think twice. I always follow the rules regarding railroad property, and I respect these rules, but I am wondering, is standing on the platforms of Metra stations that aren't served by trains at a certain time considered trespassing?

Below is a video I made last Saturday from the island platform at Kedzie to better explain what I'm talking about.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMVPRbWUgms
  by doepack
 
Metra210 wrote:I have wanted to film Metra trains at similar stations, such as Highlands, Congress Park, and Hanson Park, but what went through my mind as I saw the faces on the crew of UP-W 509 has made me think twice. I always follow the rules regarding railroad property, and I respect these rules, but I am wondering, is standing on the platforms of Metra stations that aren't served by trains at a certain time considered trespassing?
Did you get a visit from the police after that little encounter? If not, then it sounds to me like the crew wore those expressions because they aren't used to seeing railfans filming trains at a closed inner-city station located in a tough neighborhood, instead of calling you in for trespassing. And though I'm unaware of Metra's "official" stance, as long as you stay on the platforms behind the yellow lines, you should be fine. But be careful out there...
  by umtrr-author
 
I am not an expert on this but I seem to recall that the only reason for being at a station on certain transit lines (like NJ Transit for example) was to wait a reasonable amount of time for a train, otherwise you are an unauthorized person on private property.

Whether this applies to Metra is something you'd have to research.
  by CHTT1
 
Since a great many Metra platforms are open and easily accessed by the public, I wouldn't think there would be a problem. The engineer and conductor at Kedzie Avenue were probably surprised to see someone on that platform since its not easily accessed ( I believe it's above grade level, but I might be wrong) and in an area probably not frequented by casual walkers. Maybe they thought you wanted to board the train and didn't know the station was closed on weekends. The grade level suburban stations shouldn't be a problem.
  by Metra210
 
doepack wrote:
Metra210 wrote:I have wanted to film Metra trains at similar stations, such as Highlands, Congress Park, and Hanson Park, but what went through my mind as I saw the faces on the crew of UP-W 509 has made me think twice. I always follow the rules regarding railroad property, and I respect these rules, but I am wondering, is standing on the platforms of Metra stations that aren't served by trains at a certain time considered trespassing?
Did you get a visit from the police after that little encounter? If not, then it sounds to me like the crew wore those expressions because they aren't used to seeing railfans filming trains at a closed inner-city station located in a tough neighborhood, instead of calling you in for trespassing. And though I'm unaware of Metra's "official" stance, as long as you stay on the platforms behind the yellow lines, you should be fine. But be careful out there...
No, no police confronted me afterwards, and I live right by the Kedzie station (until the 29th when I move for the western suburbs), and watch the trains every day from my backyard. I also ride this train, 509, pretty often, so I'm sure that I'm a familiar face to the train crew. I've filmed trains on the Kedzie station platform numerous times, and have never had any visits from the UP police, but the facial expressions from Train 509's crew rose a little red flag in me. I have filmed trains from the island platform twice since then, and I haven't had any problems, nor any gawks from train crew, so I'm not sure what that was all about.