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Old November 27th, 2014, 05:06 AM   #301
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slartibartfas View Post
@CNB30
Yes, those new light rail systems look nice and modern. But I was having the Denver light rail in mind which looks very conservative.
Yes, but remember, the Denver lrt is almost 20 years old now (or at least the original portion)
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Old November 27th, 2014, 01:48 PM   #302
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Suburbanist that just isn't true. If you look at New York's Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal you will see that you're argument is invalid. Grand Central is very easy to get around, very centrally situated and is a major tourist, resident and commuter destination, all the while having large egress points that can channel massive amounts of people incase of emergency. Penn on the other hand is not a destination is a pit of building, favors those who know it's layout, yet despite not having tourists and or being a destination it is much more hazardous to it's occupants. Denver Union Station is built in the Romanesque style which like the Beaux-Arts Grand Central puts and emphasis on large easily accessible Public space as part of the Building's design.
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Old November 27th, 2014, 03:05 PM   #303
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The comments regarding the Denver trains are a bit harsh. There are uglier trains, San Jose's for instance.

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Old November 27th, 2014, 04:44 PM   #304
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I honestly just think it's a cost issue...

For whatever reason, a lot of American agencies like to use several of those Japanese vendors (kawasaki, for example) that seem to be the primary ones that offer rolling stock in aluminum (or whatever it is) as opposed to hard plastics/fiberglass (or whatever composites they use).

I've always assumed it's just a matter of attaching the latter over the latter (or else, it's just attached to the frame). In any case, I've been wondering if it's just cheaper to take the metal trains - possibly might have to do with these manufacturers already doing a lot of orders for other American agencies.

The flat-end thing...I've never quite figured that out.

In any case, I don't think it's an FRA issue, as their neurotic regulations on that stuff only applies if you have mixed traffic and/or crossings.

Struggling to understand why the NYC subway rolling stock looks the way it does, I've just defaulted to chalking it up to convenience and price.
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Old November 27th, 2014, 11:41 PM   #305
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CNB30 View Post
Yes, but remember, the Denver lrt is almost 20 years old now (or at least the original portion)
That is why I looked for pics of the newer west rail corridor. They also showed those same old school vehicles. Are there differently looking light rail vehicles out there in Denver?
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Old November 27th, 2014, 11:44 PM   #306
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Could be worse... could be better... Denver kinda missed the boat on the new FRA regs that would've allowed some cooler designs. Maybe eventually we'll end up with something cool like the Hong Kong Airport express:

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Old December 8th, 2014, 08:12 PM   #307
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Track laying on future East Rail line is compete:


Photo of installation of the last ties on East Rail Line by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr
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Old January 5th, 2015, 08:08 PM   #308
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Construction of pedestrian underpass around future Westminster station on Northwest Rail line:


Photo of pedestrian underpass construction at the Westminster Station, Dec. 15, 2014 by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr

While station is constructed, elimination of level crossing across 64th Ave is planned. Taken from Google Street View:



Map of the area:


Map of year-long 64th Avenue road closure by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr

And photo of commuter rail maintenance facility:


Photo of interior of commuter rail maintenance facility, Nov. 18, 2014 by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr
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Old April 8th, 2015, 12:57 AM   #311
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East Rail Line (airport line) testing

Leaving Central Park Station by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr

Over Sand Creek by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr

Crossing York and Josephine by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr

Checking clearance to the platform by Regional Transportation District, on Flickr
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Old April 8th, 2015, 09:39 PM   #312
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Why? Why the heck there are level crossings on a brand new railway line?
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Old April 8th, 2015, 10:38 PM   #313
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Because money.
Because priorities.
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Old April 8th, 2015, 11:21 PM   #314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falubaz View Post
Why? Why the heck there are level crossings on a brand new railway line?
It's more like light rail.
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Old April 9th, 2015, 12:58 AM   #315
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
It's more like light rail.
Excellent question! I wish they didn't have level crossings on this brand new line.
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Old April 9th, 2015, 02:41 AM   #316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
It's more like light rail.
Not at all! It's correctly classified as “commuter rail line”: it'll use heavy-rail carriages, be 22,8 mile long with only 5 intermediate station and take 35' for a complete ride - compared to existing light rail lines, we have:
- distance between two adjacent stops 3,8 mile (~6,1 km) vs 1,12 mile (~1,8 km) average;
- commercial speed 39 mph (~63 km/h) vs 27 mph (~43,5 km/h) average.

The service is going to be under RTD ownership and share their letter-based naming system (assigned letter “A”), but the whole thing mustn't be misleading: RTD simply wants to boost new commuter lines treating the same both them and current/future light rail lines; this fact and the rather high expected headway (15' peak and non-peak, as well as the outer LRT sections) mean that these services will work (quite) like an European “S-Bahn” network - or at least they'll occupy the same place in Denver's transit system.
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Old April 10th, 2015, 05:58 PM   #317
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrAronymous View Post
Because money.
Because priorities.
Add, emphatically, because of POLITICS. The route from DIA to Denver runs almost completely through Denver's land connection to DIA, and, then remains within the city limits of Denver until terminating at Union Station.

This created extra expenses, such as a long SINGLE track viaduct across I-70. This viaduct is a very strange cost compromise, because had the line run due north from Powhaton Road (see

https://www.google.com/maps/@39.7652...0956,13z?hl=en )

no huge viaduct across I-70 would have had to have been built, and, the entire line could have been double tracked.

The true miracle of the DIA line is that it is being built at all. The entire line is largely a means to funnel airport arrivals to hotels in downtown Denver. Those that are worked so hard to complete the line and the rest of Fastracks should be commended, as most have been well aware for decades of the requirement to compromise with the well heeled and powerful Denver property interests.

The problem with building any public transportation infrastructure in the US today almost always centers around dealing with those property owners and speculators who are trying to maximize profit at the expense of engineering efficiency and public need.
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Old April 10th, 2015, 06:03 PM   #318
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The major problem with Fastracks, IMO, is the 20-year delay on rail service to Boulder, now that they opted for a mediocre BRT solution along US 36.
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Old April 10th, 2015, 06:05 PM   #319
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yak79 View Post
Not at all! It's correctly classified as “commuter rail line”: it'll use heavy-rail carriages, be 22,8 mile long with only 5 intermediate station and take 35' for a complete ride - compared to existing light rail lines, we have:
- distance between two adjacent stops 3,8 mile (~6,1 km) vs 1,12 mile (~1,8 km) average;
- commercial speed 39 mph (~63 km/h) vs 27 mph (~43,5 km/h) average.

The service is going to be under RTD ownership and share their letter-based naming system (assigned letter “A”), but the whole thing mustn't be misleading: RTD simply wants to boost new commuter lines treating the same both them and current/future light rail lines; this fact and the rather high expected headway (15' peak and non-peak, as well as the outer LRT sections) mean that these services will work (quite) like an European “S-Bahn” network - or at least they'll occupy the same place in Denver's transit system.
A true world class line to DIA would have required different right of way from the UP line north to DIA, double tracking throughout, and passing stations to enable 50 mph express train running. Due to the influence of property speculators and property developers, the DIA line has single track viaducts, viaducts of unnecessary length, poor station design, and, poor interfacing with the I-225 line.

The termination of the line into the expanded DIA terminal rather than making a loop with one edge at right angles to the DIA terminal is a serious design flaw. Perhaps too much ego and not enough engineering excellence was the problem.
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Old April 10th, 2015, 06:16 PM   #320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
The major problem with Fastracks, IMO, is the 20-year delay on rail service to Boulder, now that they opted for a mediocre BRT solution along US 36.
I would rank that as second to the lack of rail connectivity through downtown due to, again, property developers maximizing office and residential structure footprints at the expense of efficiency in Lodo.

The problem with US 36, which will be repeated in the widening of I-70 between I-25 and Tower Road by the Colorado Department of Transportation, is that contracts were (and will be in I-70's case) drawn up through private banking entities for profit based operation without public or legislative scrutiny.

A good example of just how well thought out Goldman Sachs personnel determined profit potential is that a minimum of THREE people per car will be necessary before tolls are waived.

In the case of US 36, the merging of RTD's BRT, private turnpike based financing, and, CDOT's desire to widen US 36, is traceable in significant part to BNSF (Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railroad) repeatedly raising the cost of sharing right of way between Denver and Boulder and Boulder and Longmont during decade long negotiations between RTD and the freight railroad.
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